Grapes and Dogs:
A Killer Combination

Grapes and dogs are an extremely dangerous combination. It is unknown exactly what component of grapes is toxic to dogs, but dogs that ingest grapes or raisins are at risk of acute renal (kidney) failure, which is fatal.

grapes and dogs dog eating grapes

So far, the toxicity has not been narrowed down to any specific type of grape. Both seeded and seedless grapes as well as all varieties (red, green, etc.) appear to pose a danger. It is also not known if it is necessary to ingest the skins to receive the toxic effect. Of course, since raisins are dried grapes, they, too, pose a great danger to dogs.

Grape seed extract, however, has not to date been shown to have any toxic effect on dogs. Toxicity only appears to occur when the actual grape itself is ingested.

Signs of Grape Poisoning in Dogs

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy
  • Excessive thirst

From April 2003 to April 2004, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center managed 140 cases involving grapes and dogs. In these cases, the dogs ingested varying amounts of grapes or raisins. Of these 140 cases managed by the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, more than 50 of the dogs developed clinical signs of toxicity, ranging from vomiting to life-threatening kidney failure. Seven of the dogs died.

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center advices that people do not give grapes or raisins in any amount to their dogs.

If your dog has ingested any amount of grapes or raisins, take him to your veterinarian or the nearest emergency veterinary clinic immediately. If possible, call when you are on your way to alert them that you are bringing in a dog who has ingested grapes (or raisins) and is at risk of renal failure.

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If you feel your pet has ingested a toxic substance, call an animal poison control center, such as the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (888-426-4435) or the Pet Poison Helpline (800-213-6680) immediately. Your pet's life depends upon it!

Click here to read the story of how a puppy who ate an entire loaf of raisin bread was treated in time and saved.

Read about more toxic foods for dogs.

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