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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This was posted on my fish forum, thought we could use it here as well,

January 25, 2008 6:09 am

If you have a dog... PLEASE read this and send it on.  If you don't have a
dog, please pass along to friends who do.   Written by: Laurinda Morris,
DVMDanville Veterinary ClinicDanville , Ohio

This week I had the first case
in history of raisin toxicity ever se en at MedVet. My patient was a
56-pound, 5 yr old male neutered lab mix that ate half a canister of
raisins sometime between 7:30 AM and 4:30 PM on Tuesday.  He started with
vomiting, diarrhea and shaking about 1AM on Wednesday but the owner didn't
call my emergency service until 7AM.

I had heard somewhere about raisins
AND grapes causing acute Renal failure but hadn't seen any formal paper on
the subject. We had her bring the dog in immediately. In the meantime, I
called the ER service at MedVet, and the doctor there was like me - had
heard something about it, but....

Anyway, we contacted the ASPCA National
Animal Poison Control Center and they said to give I V fluids at 1 1/2
times maintenance and watch the kidney values for the next 48-72 hours.
The dog's BUN (blood urea nitrogen level) was already at 32 (normal less
than 27) and creatinine! over 5 ( 1.9 is the high end of normal). Both are
monitors of kidney function in the bloodstream.

We placed an IV catheter
and started the fluids. Rechecked the renal values at 5 PM and the BUN was
over 40 and creatinine over 7 with no urine production after a liter of
fluids.  At the point I felt the dog was in acute renal failure and sent
him on to MedVet for a urinary catheter to monitor urine output overnight
as well as overnight care.

He started vomiting again overnight at MedVet
and his renal values have continued to increase daily. He produced urine
when given Lasix as a diuretic. He was on 3 different anti-vomiting
medications and they still couldn't control his vomiting.

Today his urine
output decreased again, his BUN was over 120, his creatinine was at 10,
his phosphorus was very elevated and his blood pressure, which had been
staying around 150, skyrocketed to 220.. He continued to vomit and the
owners elected to euthanize.This is a very sad case - great dog, great
owners who had no idea raisins could be a toxin.

Please alert everyone you
know who ha s a dog of this very serious risk. Poison control said as few
as 7 raisins or grapes could be toxic. Many people I know give their dogs
grapes or raisins as treats including our ex-handler's. Any exposure
should give rise to immediate concern. Even if you don't have a dog, you
might have friends who do. This is worth passing on to them. Confirmation
from Snopes about the above...


Q. Are grapes and raisins really poisonous to pets?
From Janet Tobiassen Crosby, DVM,Your Guide to Veterinary Medicine.FREE
Newsletter. Sign Up Now!

Originally thought to be an urban legend, it is now known that raisins and
grapes are indeed toxic to dogs. The type of grape and the type of dog
doesn't seem to matter, and the toxic amount may be a small serving to
several ounces. Read this FAQ to learn what is known about this mystery
toxin and to safeguard your pets from accidental posioning.

A. Some dogs naturally love eating raisins and grapes and will seek them
out; from the pantry or growing in a vineyard. Pet owners have used
raisins as a training treat, and some have used them as a "healthy" snack
alternative for their dogs.

ToxicityA computerized animal toxicity
database helped veterinarians see a trend in 1989, noticing that in some
cases of acute renal failure (sudden kidney failure) dogs shared a common
history: the consumption of raisins or grapes just prior to the kidney

The type of grape or raisin doesn't seem to matter, and the
amount consumed may be a single serving of raisins or a pound or more of
grapes. (Raisins are much more concentrated.)

Researchers are exploring
the possibilities: a mycotoxin (fungal toxin), pesticide, herbicide or
heavy metals, but thus far the actual toxin is unknown at this time.
Clinical SignsVomiting and jittery (hyperactive) behavior are seen
immediately to within the first 24 hours after ingestion. Diarrhea may
also be seen, and the vomitus and feces may contain partially digested
grapes or raisins. After 24 hours, the dog may be come anorexic, lethargic
and depressed. Additionally the abdomen may be painful, the dog may stop
drinking and urinating. Ultimately, the kidneys fail, and without
aggressive treatment, many dogs will die.

TreatmentIf the raisin or grape ingestion was 2 hours or less, the
veterinarian will want to induce vomiting to rid the body of the toxin and
then administer activated charcoal to absorb any remaining toxin.
Aggressive intravenous (IV) fluid therapy is required to keep the kidneys
in good health. Additional kidney medications may be indicated, depending
on the patient.

If you suspect that your pet has consumed any amount of grapes or raisins,
please contact your veterinarian immediately.
Additional ResourcesASPCA National Animal Poison Control CenterAnimal
Poison Hotline

880 Posts
I think its pretty common knowledge that raisin, grapes, chocolates, onions, etc. are bad for dogs.  At least among dog lovers.

2,592 Posts
I never knew about grapes/raisins either before coming here or alot of other foods like onions.
As a first time dog owner I'm glad there are resources out there like this forum to lead us in the right direction!
Thanks for sharing that information aquagirl900!
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