Warning about stuffed animals

Awhile back at agility class, a vet, who is a fellow agility student, was telling us about a case she had. The dog ate a child's teddy bear and was very sick. When she opened the dog up to remove what she thought was an intestinal obstruction she found a huge gelatin type mess inside and the dog’s intestines were black and the tissue dead. The dog will die no surgery can fix him up there was no living intestine left from stomach to colon.
This was not an obstruction so she called the manufacturer of the Teddy Bear on a
quest to find out what the gel was and what killed the dog. Turns out the stuffing in children's toys contains ingredients for flame retardants and mite control! It is designed to become a gel. It is highly toxic. Now you would think a child's toy would be safe because it is for children, but they don't expect a child to eat the stuffing of the toys... huummmm that seems a bit scary too. But we all know most dogs demolish stuffed toys.
So do not give or buy your dog any children's stuffed animals... some people get them at goodwill etc. The vet will be posting a warning and story and I will send any other facts as needed and as I learn more. Maybe some children's toys do not have this ingredient, but better to be safe than sorry. So meanwhile, make sure all your dog toys are for dogs. Please pass this on... it is a horrible death she described and one that can be avoided.
(P.S. The vet who operated on the dog is Sandra Tuoninen, DVM in Northern MN. Her research found that it looks like the chemical is to discourage bacterial growth and is also found in some comforters and bedspreads.)


September 13, 2011

Here is some very important info for people that don't know about grapes and raisins!

Problems With Dogs and Grapes

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center has received more that: 50 well documented reports of dogs developing acute kidney failure after ingesting grapes or raisins. Veterinary toxicologists at the Center began noticing this trend in 1999. As more cases were reported enough was generated in the database to help veterinarians identify and treat dogs at risk. In all of the cases of the ingredients for potential acute kidney failure were the same. The grapes and raisins ingested were from a variety of sources. Some were commercially prepared products of various brands purchased at grocery stores and some were grown in private back yards. The cases aren't from any specific region, but instead came from across the U.S. According to preliminary data, the affected dogs began vomiting within six hours of ingesting the grapes or raisins. Most of the time, partially digested grapes or raisins could be seen in the vomit, fecal material or both. At this point, some dogs would stop eating and develop diarrhea. The dogs often became quiet and lethargic and showed signs of abdominal pain. These clinical signs lasted for several days and sometimes even weeks. In a vast majority of the cases. The dogs continued to vomit and became depressed, at which point veterinary care was sought The results of the blood tests showed consistent patterns. Elevations in creatinine and BUN, as well as hypocalcaemia and hypophosphatemia have been reported. The abnormal blood levels would increase anywhere between 24 hours to several days after the dogs ate the fruit. Kidney damage was evident in most cases within 72 hours from ingestion. As the kidney damage developed, some dogs would produce only small amounts of urine. When they could no longer produce urine, death occurred. In some cases, dogs that received timely veterinary care still had to be euthanized. Only half the dogs that received aggressive treatment, which include intravenous fluids and medication had fully recovered. In an attempt to determine causative agents or disease processes, veterinary toxicologists at the Center have screened the suspected grapes and raisins for various pesticides, heavy metals, and mycotoxins (fungal contaminants) and so far, all results have come back negative. In the case; where the grapes were grown in private yards, owners confirmed that no insecticides, fertilizers or antifungal had been used on the fruit As for treatment, the first line of defense is decontamination. Inducing vomiting in recent ingestion and administering activated charcoal helps prevent absorption of potential toxin. Dogs should be hospitalized and placed on a dieresis of intravenous fluids for a minimum of 48 hours. The blood work should be monitored daily for at least three days following the ingestion. If all blood work is normal after three days, it's unlikely that kidney failure will occur. If a dog shows evidence of kidney failure, fluids must be continued, and other medications should be used to stimulate urine production.