Ho Ho Ho… and a trip to the Vets 


Christmas is a wonderful time of year, but we should also remember that common Christmas treats may be harmful for our pets; read on to help keep your pet safe during the festive period!

Click here if you need a day or night vet in Surrey or in south Birmingham and Bromsgrove 


It’s best to avoid giving chocolate to your pet as even a small amount, especially of darker chocolate or cocoa powder, can have high levels of the toxic chemical theobromine. 

*Remember to keep those chocolate tree decorations out of paws reach!

Dogs can’t cope with eating theobromine and may start to show signs such as vomiting, twitching and tummy pain, through to collapsing and having a fit.
If you think your dog may have eaten chocolate, then best advice is to call your day or emergency vet, as soon as possible. If you tell them the type and approximate amount of chocolate eaten, and the breed of dog you have, they will be able to tell you if the toxic level of chocolate has been eaten.

It may be advised to bring your dog into the clinic to make it vomit (please NEVER try and make your dog vomit at home by methods advised in the Internet). If a large amount of chocolate has been eaten, your dog may need to stay in the clinic for treatment.

This is present in artificial sweeteners and so can be found in cakes, biscuits and jam, especially low sugar or diabetic products.

Best advice is to read the ingredients of all your Christmas treats – just to make sure you’re aware of any that contain xylitol.

It can cause collapse, liver damage, and can be fatal. 

It’s very easy for your pet to eat it accidentally, however it is extremely toxic and it’s crucial that you get to your vet ASAP so they can make your dog vomit and start any treatment that may be needed

Grapes and Raisins

These are EXTREMELY dangerous to dogs. This is because the poisoning they cause is unpredictable. One dog may eat raisins and be ok, but another dog may eat just one or two and go into kidney failure.
Christmas is a time we see a lot of patients with raisin kidney damage, as pets get hold of mince pies, Christmas cake, Christmas puddings and some chocolates.

If you think your pet has accidentally eaten grapes or raisins, then call your vet ASAP. They will most likely recommend a blood test and possibly fluids (a drip).

Onions, Leeks and Garlic
These foods can be hidden in things like stuffing, gravy and sausages, but if eaten, they can cause damage to red blood cells, meaning your dog can become very poorly (anaemia) very quickly.
Call your vet if you think your dog may have eaten onions, shallots, leeks or garlic. 

Don’t let this information be a worry over Christmas, but just get family and friends to be careful and have a look at the ingredients of your Christmas treats!

Merry Christmas! 


One thought on “Ho Ho Ho… and a trip to the Vets 

  1. Great article Sarah 🙂 Having had a dog that has eaten raisins ( had to have a night in the vets ) The same dog also got hold of a Chocolate chip cake and had to be made to vomit ( under veterinary supervision). And then this evening ( same dog again ) stole a pot of diet Yoghurt. I know only too well how quickly they can get hold of these things. Thanks to your article I was able to quickly tell if I had to ring the emergency vets again. Fortunately there was no Xylitol in it, but Aspartame, which although may give her a stomach upset, wouldn’t at such a small amount be worse. People don’t realise the amount of things around our houses that can be dangerous , and dogs being dogs can easily get hold of , especially with children in the house.

    Liked by 1 person

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