Hazard ahead!! Things to be aware of during the festive season.

hazardahead2With the busy time of Xmas & New Year upon us I’d like to remind you all of foods and other things that can be so dangerous for our dogs.

I don’t know about you, but I love giving my dog treats. It makes him happy, so in turn I am happy. But there are some things we should not give our dogs! We are the adults, so no matter how much your dogs sits and stares at your food begging for you to hand it over, we have to consider that what we can eat, they may not be able too!

So I am here to remind you of some harzards for dogs this time of year! Lets start with food!


These little things can cause a dog to go into Kidney failure. So extremely serious that you keep these away from dogs!!! Remember these are in Xmas Mince pies!!

These can cause upset stomachs in dogs, breathing difficulties, fluid buildup in the chest, but the most dangerous thing for them to the eat is the pit. Since it’s slippery, the pit can accidentally be swallowed by dogs, leading to obstruction of the gastrointestinal tract. So be careful!

Can cause Cyanide poisoning in large quantities. Big NO.

Onions damage red blood cells. If enough onions are consumed a blood transfusion might be necessary. Stay clear!

Raw Garlic.
These are apart of the onion family, however stronger than an onion, which makes them more toxic! BAD!

Water melon Rind.
Expect surgery to remove this!

Apple Seeds/core.
These contain cyanogenic glycosides which is also known as cyanide! Pear cores/seeds are also a no no too!

Peach, Plum, Apricot or Nectarine Pits.
These can cause an intestinal blockage. Expect Surgery to remove!

Corn Cob.
These also cause intestinal blockage. Surgery is likely. I cannot tell you how many surgeries I have assisted in removing a simple corn cob!

Extremely toxic to the heart & nervous system. It contains caffeine & Theobromine which fall under the Methylxanthines umbrella. The darker the chocolate the higher the toxicity. Symptoms are, vomiting, dehydration, abdominal pains, severe agitation, muscle tremors, irregular heart rhythm, elevated body temperature, seizures and death.

Intoxication, Coma & Death. Steer clear!

Dogs need to avoid Caffeine! Caffeine contains Methylated xanthine. It stimulates your dogs nervous system causing vomiting, heart palpitations and even death.

Dogs are Lactose intolerant. This can cause vomiting and diarrhoea and other gastrointestinal complications that can eventually lead to bacterial diseases.

Dogs do not have the right enzymes to break down such fat. Excessive amounts of cheese is dangerous!

Yeast Dough.
Raw yeast dough (what bread is made from) can ferment in a dogs stomach & become toxic. This can be very painful for your dog.

Cooked Bones.
When bones are cooked they go from being soft to hard. So when a dog bites into a bone, the bone turns into sharp splinters! If your dog swallows these they could puncture anywhere from the throat through to the back end!

Macadamia nuts & Walnuts.
These can cause nervous system & muscle damage.

Bacon can lead to the disease pancreatitis. Once a dogs pancreas develops pancreatitis it becomes inflamed and stops functioning. Any fatty food can cause Pancreatitis. So be careful!

Ingestion of lilies can cause gastrointestinal upset, depression, anorexia and tremors. These are highly poisonous to cats too & can cause death!

Xylitol.(Sweetener found in sweets & Chewing Gum)
This sweetener isn’t so sweet to our pets! It can result in low blood sugar, seizures, liver failure and death. The symptoms can show up fast! In as little as 30 minutes or as long as 12 hours after ingestion. Treatment must be performed quickly and aggressively or the result can be fatal.

If your dog eats ANY of these things, take your dog to the vet immediately. Out of normal vet hours visit any of the emergency centres that are open 24 hours. Always keep your vets details or the emergency vet details close by! I keep mine on the fridge and in my phone.

So now that we have discussed items that dogs should not eat, let talk about what scary for some dogs!


How spectacular are fire works!? I love them, they are mesmerising and amazing! However some dogs do not love them one little bit! My dog, thankfully is absolutely fine with them! When he was young and there was a loud noise such as thunder or fireworks he would look to me to see my reaction. My reaction around him was NO reaction! I wasn’t bothered, so neither was he. From that moment on he was just cool with them! That is a tip for anyone with a young impressionable dog.

But not all dogs have had that moment to learn from and are completely petrified of fireworks, thunder and lightening therefore becoming a phobia!

So what should you do?


When you know that fireworks or a storm is coming- prepare!

If your dog has to be outside, make sure he or she has a collar with a tag with your phone number, council tag and a microchip. If he or she escapes then whoever finds your dog can call you immediately!
Secure your yard! Simple.
It is ideal to bring your dog inside where he or she can be secure. I recommend you continue to go about your usual whilst the frightening skies are scaring your dog. If your dog sees you’re ok with the scary noise then this can be comforting to your dog.
Consider turning the tv up louder than usual to mask the sound. Or some kind of music.
Close the drapes, shutters or what ever you have on the windows so your dog cannot see the havoc going on outside!
Try your best to distract your dog from it. Play ball, play with toys, lay some treats out like a game. Stimulation will distract them!
Its important you talk to your pet in a calm loving sweet voice. Make some pleasant small talk if you will! Your voice could be the key to calm your dog.


Never scold your dog if they start to become destructive or exhibit bad behaviour. Remember they are scared and Panicked!


Talk to your vet about some calming medication.
I can recommend using Thundercoats (ask your vet or pet store) and also Rescue remedy Drops (available from all good pharmacys).
Also discuss with your vet or dog behaviourist some handy tips or training for the future. All dogs are different and respond differently to loud noises. Whilst some dogs respond to some distractions others may not. Its finding the right happy medium for your dog.
There are things such as CD’s of frightening noises. Sounds terrible, but they are a good tool! You play the CD each day whilst your dog is enjoying some favourite food or play, but play the CD LOW so you can hardly hear it yourself. Over time you slowly increase the volume so your dog becomes used the sound and feels ok with it! Ask your vet about these.

Just you being with your pet is a comfort. Try not to console your pet, this can be interpreted by your dog that this IS scary and its ok to react this way. You want to act normal around your dog and speak to him or her and use distractions. Try to make them see that you’re not upset or scared, so neither should he or she!

I hope this has helped you all in some way. After all we love our dogs and would never want them to be harmed or upset or frightened.

I am always a phone call away if you would like to discuss any of this further with me.
0407 763 674

Don’t forget on New Years Eve to make sure your Dog is safe & Secure!

Over and out for this week! Check in next week for my next discussion!

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