Not So Healthy Ingredients for Your Pet: Grapes

The next ingredient we’re examining in our ongoing series on Not so Healthy Ingredients for Your Pet are grapes. It is well documented that grapes and raisins are toxic for dogs. Toxicity for cats is not fully known, but it’s best to play it safe and keep the grapes away from your cat.

What is a Grape?
We’re all familiar with grapes. They are an edible, pulpy, smooth-skinned berry or fruit that grows in clusters on vines of the genus Vitis. They come in many varieties and are a good snack – for humans. Raisins are simply dried grapes.

Why would grape be in pet food?
They wouldn’t. We found zero instances of grapes in any of the dog or cat foods in our pet food ingredient database which is good because while they may be a great snack for humans they are taboo for your pets.

Are there any risks to feeding your pet grapes?
YES. As we said, grapes and raisins are highly toxic to dogs (and might be for cats). Scientists have yet to determine the exact toxin in the fruit or the amount of grapes eaten to produce toxicity, so it’s best to avoid them completely. Accidents do happen, so watch your pet closely for any signs and get to your vet immediately if they exhibit any of the following signs:

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Signs of grape poisoning:

  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea – within a few hours of ingestion
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy, weakness, unusual quietness
  • Abdominal pain
  • Dehydration
  • Diminished urination

The toxin in grapes affect the kidney and can even lead to complete kidney failure, so early treatment is critical.

If you are certain your pet has ingested grapes, the best course of action is to induce vomiting. This is only helpful if the ingestion occurred within the last few hours. You can call the Pet Poison Helpline (http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/contact/ ) or your local veterinarian for instructions on caring for your pet.

Grape Factoids:
There are more than 8,000 varieties of grapes – which is why there are so many different types of wine!

Napa Valley, California has the highest concentration of vineyards with over 200.

Grapes come in multiple colors, white, red, black, blue, green, purple and golden.

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Sources:

https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/natural-foods/can-dogs-eat-grapes1/

https://www.petmd.com/dog/emergency/digestive/e_dg_grape_raisin_toxicity

http://topfoodfacts.com/20-interesting-facts-about-grape/