Ezine Head
March 30, 2012     Volume 3, Issue 13 Follow Us   Facebook Twitter Youtube
 Editor's Notes
 Pet Alert!
12/8/2011 - Advanced Animal Nutrition Recalls Dry Dog Food
12/13/2011 - Feeders Supply, Inc. Recalls Arrow Brand Dry Dog Food
12/14/2011 - Updated New Release With Corrected Lot Numbers Petrus Feed and Seed Stores, Inc. (Louisiana) recalls its 21% Dog Food

**For a list of current pet food recalls, click HERE.

My mother-in-law, Sue and I love to be in the kitchen together. She and I are pretty well connected so we never seem to bump into each other as we’re crafting delicious dishes and deserts together.

Another “person” who likes to join us is my dog, Chewy. He loves to play the vacuum cleaner and “help clean up” any spills we may have created while we’re at work. Unfortunately, Chewy is not as agile as us and often gets reminded to “get out of the kitchen” while we’re doing our thing.

One night in particular, Sue and I dreamed up a delicious recipe for gooey fudge brownies dripping in caramel and chocolate. The dessert came out so well that Sue decided to put a few away in her purse to take home later.

After dinner, while the rest of us were watching a movie together in the living room, I noticed that Chewy was not at his usual spot next to my husband’s feet. I called out to Chewy but he didn’t come. I thought this was strange because he’s really good at coming when called so I went to look for him.

As it turned out, Chewy had found a way to get into Sue’s purse and eat the chocolate brownies that she had stashed away for later. This little sneak thief found a way to pry open her purse, pull out the baggie that contained the brownies and ate all of them! He was listless, drooling and appeared “drunk”.

I knew how toxic chocolate was to dogs
but never encountered a situation like this before so I panicked and immediately called the vet. I explained what happened and the nurse calmed me down and told me what to do. Luckily the amount that Chewy ate wasn’t enough to kill him but I was frantic to see him in such a state and watched him all night in case his condition worsened and I would have to rush him to the emergency room.

Though I wish nothing like this ever happens to you and your pooch, I know that things can occur, sometimes in a matter of seconds. Our pups have quite a nose on them, which can unfortunately get them into some bad situations if we’re not careful. That’s why it is VERY IMPORTANT that you read this week’s article on pet poison prevention. It can be the matter of life or death for your pet.

Stay safe,

Amber Keiper and the rest of the BARF World team


Important Dates to Remember

March is Pet Poison Prevention Month

  • March 6 – 12: National Procrastination Week. Time to relax and put all those impending to-do's on your list on the back burner…you can get it done tomorrow.

  • March 9: Panic Day. If you celebrated National Procrastination Week then Panic Day is most likely going to be relevant to you. Flail your arms up in the air today and panic as you realize how many things you still have to get done.

  • March 11: Daylight Savings Time. "Spring forward, Fall back". This age old saying reminds us to set our clocks forward an hour today as we start the Spring season.

  • March 15: March 15, 1975: Happy birthday to celebrity dog lover, Eva Longoria who turns 36 today. Eva owns two dogs; a maltese named Jinxy (who sometimes visits her at the set of her hit TV show, Desperate Housewives) and a pug named Oprah.

  • March 17: Happy St Patrick's Day

  • March 19, 1977:The anniversary of the final episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show. The show premiered on September 19th, 1970 and ran for 168 episodes. It won 29 Emmy awards, a record unbroken until 2002 by the show Frasier.

  • March 20: First Day of Spring


 If Dogs Could Talk

Going Away? Don’t Come Home To A Poisoned Pet

By Al Skender

Many people are planning their family vacations now that the weather has improved a bit and spring has started to show her beautiful face again. Whether you are leaving your pet with a dog-sitter or are planning to stay close to home, it’s always important to be aware of the dangers that can threaten your pet while you’re not home.

“Every year, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control hotline handles over 150,000 cases of pets being poisoned, and many of those cases involved common household items.” Dr. Steven Hansen of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) goes on to state that, “In our homes, the bathroom is the most dangerous spot for pets. The single most common reason for calls into the poison hotline is because pets have consumed medications.”

Some substances, like over-the-counter medications, that are safe for people, can in fact be deadly for our pets. Even if owners are unsure about the toxicity of a substance, they should take precautions and keep it secured in closed containers and out of reach or view of their animals.

In some cases, it is not necessary that your dog eat or drink the potential poison; the poison can enter the animal’s body in other ways such as if it comes in contact with their fur or paws. When pets groom themselves, either by licking their paws or fur, they will undoubtedly ingest the toxic substance and be at risk for toxicity.

Common Household Items Toxic To Pets

Often the most dangerous poisons for pets are certain “people foods” and over-the-counter or prescription drugs. However other common household items that are toxic to your pooch include:

  • Anti-depressants can cause vomiting and in more severe case – serotonin syndrome; a dangerous condition that raises the body temperature, heart rate and blood pressure of your pet and can even cause seizures.
  • Automotive and household chemicals are one of the most dangerous substances. Substances containing antifreeze, solvents and pool chemicals can poison pets. Symptoms include stomach disorders, depression, and chemical burns. Various cleaning, washing and bleaching agents can cause poisoning and respiratory problems.
  • Avocado can also be dangerous when fed in large amounts. In the avocado there is a substance called “persin” which can cause vomiting and diarrhea in pets.
  • Chocolate contains theobromine, which is a diuretic.  Your dog may be very thirsty and urinate a lot - vomiting and diarrhea are usual symptoms as well. Here's the real danger…theobromine is also a cardiac stimulant so it could increase your dog's heart rate or cause irregular heart beats. For that same reason, it is also a good idea to keep coffee and caffeine away from your pet.
  • Domestic plants can also be harmful to pets. Here is a list of the most toxic plants: azaleas and rhododendrons (during the flowering these plants contain toxins that can cause vomiting, diarrhea, coma and possibly death); tulips and daffodils (the bulbs of these plants can cause serious stomach problems, cramps, and damage to the heart); sago palm (a few seeds may be enough to cause vomiting, seizures and liver failure).
  • Fertilizers used in the garden, which are made of dried blood, poultry manure and bone meal, are very attractive for pets but can be toxic for them if consumed.
  • Fleas and tick medications are also dangerous. Each year thousands of animals around the world are inadvertently poisoned by these substances. Problems arise when a pet accidentally swallows these substances, or an overdose occurs (this is especially the matter for small pets).
  • Food from people’s table bears dangers as well. Pets and people have different metabolism. Some foods and drinks that are safe for humans can be dangerous and sometimes deadly for dogs.
  • Grapes and raisins are also unsafe. Experts are not sure why, but these fruits can cause kidney failure in dogs. Even small amounts can cause problems.
  • Medications for pets may be dangerous too. Pets can be poisoned and die from drugs meant to help them. The most common problems are encountered with overdose of prescribed painkillers.
  • Nuts - We know for certain that Macadamia nuts are one of the most toxic nuts for dogs followed by walnuts and almonds especially bitter almonds.  When dogs get into these delicious nuts we're not sure exactly what happens... because the toxic compound is unknown but dogs seem to develop tremors and weakness or paralysis of the hindquarters.   And sometimes there is pain or swelling when you manipulate the limb or touch this area.  The good news is the toxicity doesn't seem to last long; nevertheless nuts in general should be avoided.
  • Onions contain the toxic ingredient, thiosulphate that causes the problem. At first you might notice some vomiting and diarrhea and your pet will become tired and lethargic.  Your pet develops haemolytic anemia, which is when the red blood cells actually burst within the body.  The breath in the body is much less because the red blood cells, which carry oxygen, have been reduced or destroyed. 
  • Over-the-counter or prescription medications for people are dangerous. Even small doses of narcotic drugs, which are okay for people, can have the opposite effect on your animals. Some of the most common and harmful drugs for dogs include non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory medications, which can lead to stomach and intestinal ulcers, or kidney failure.
  • Wine, Beer or other Alcoholic Beverages - A glass of that special vintage wine is definitely a NO-NO!  We mentioned how dangerous grapes are so it's logical that wine is equally as bad.  Beware of alcohol poisoning, which can cause liver failure and even death.
  • Xylitol as the sweetener can be found in many foods, including chewing gum and candy. Xylitol causes a rapid drop of sugar in blood, which leads to weakness and cramps. Some pets liver failure was observed, too.

All of these substances have different effects to the body of your pet. Problems will often arise beginning with the gastrointestinal tract and neurology (seizures), followed by cardiac and respiratory failure, and eventually coma and death.

Pet owners should remember that although they love and enjoy many foods, consume different medications or use chemicals indoors and outdoors, all these facts could be harmful and sometimes even deadly for their pets.  They should educate themselves and share useful information on harmful agents with other pet owners.

What To Do If Your Pet Is Poisoned

It is very important to be prepared for any emergency will a well-stocked pet first aid kit and the number for animal poison control in an easy to find location, especially if you have a dog-sitter for your pet while you’re away:

ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center
(available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year)
$65 consultation fee
1(888) 426-4435

If your pet has ingested a poisonous substance, call Animal Poision Control (above) and refer to you pet first aid handbook. While you wouldn’t think it, some ingested poisons are not advisable to induce vomiting so be sure to check the label of the ingested substance before attempting.

According to BARF World’s “Dog First Aid Handbook”:

If you know the ingested poisonous substance, follow the directions on the label. If it tells you to “induce vomiting”, give the dog one teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide orally for every 10 lb. of his body weight. Use the syringe included in the your K-911 Pet First Aid Kit and get the solution down his throat. He should begin to vomit in about 10 minutes after ingestion of the hydrogen peroxide solution. If not, repeat the process.

Be aware that hydrogen peroxide is very caustic and can cause your dog stomach upset. Also, bloody vomit is very common with hydrogen peroxide use. After your pet has recovered, give some Nux Vom and wait 12 hours before offering any food or water. After 12 hours give him a small amount of water mixed with Luxolite then begin to offer small amounts of food over time.”

Lastly, make a list of all foods your pet is allergic to and keep detailed instructions of any medications your pet is taking so that whoever is watching your dog while you’re away will not risk overdosing your pet.

Hopefully these tips will give you peace of mind when traveling away from your beloved canine friend.


Al Skender is a Raw Diet Educator for BARF World Inc. He's a self-proclaimed expert on the German Shepherd breed, owning several of them throughout his life. He enjoys being outdoors and prefers it to being stuck in front of the television, unless The Office or CSI is on. For more articles like these and to learn more about the benefits of raw food for your pets, sign up for The Intelligent Pet monthly e-zine at barfworld.com/ezine

 Hot Dog Products

Stay Prepared For Any Emergency with the K-911 Pet First Aid Kit

Our dogs seem to have a tendency to investigate and sniff out the oddest things. While this personality trait can be endearing, it can also get your pooch into trouble fast.

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control hotline (1-888- 426-4435) reports that they normally handle over 150,000 calls a year from pet owners whose pets have been poisoned.

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 Bark Out Loud

String of Poisoned Dog Incidents in Chicago, Pet Owners Warned

“Pet stores and veterinarians on the North Side are sending out a warning: someone is putting squirrel poison where dogs can get it, and it has killed some dogs already.” (Click here for the full article.)

Wags of Wisdom:

“The contamination of grains used in pet food, particularly mycotoxins, can be deadly. Mycotoxins are toxic substances produced by fungi in moldy grains and they are found in rye, corn, barley, oats, wheat, peanuts, Brazil nuts, pecans, and walnuts…The most common mycotoxins are aflatoxins B1. These are known carcinogens in laboratory animals and presumably in our pets…Deoxynivalenol (DON), also known as vomitoxin, is a common contaminate of wheat, barley, rye, and corn. Pets who eat grains contaminated with vomitoxin can have symptoms that include vomiting, diarrhea, and refusing to eat.”
-Ann N. Martin, “Foods Pets Diet For: Shocking Facts About Pet Food” (NewSage Press, 2008)

“A well-trained dog will make no attempt to share your lunch. He will just make you feel so guilty that you cannot enjoy it.”
-Helen Thomson, English writer


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