Poison proofing your home for pets - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Poison proofing your home for pets

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -

He's a seemingly playful pup, but just last week, Dobby, was far from an energetic Golden Retriever.  After eating half a pack of sugarless gum, the nine-month-old began acting sluggish and eventually started throwing up, which is when his owner, Mike Gauntner brought him here to the Crago Veterinary Centre.
 
"The ones that are usually, that we get the calls on are young, active, happy dogs that are just looking to get into everything and so they find trouble wherever they are looking," said veterinarian Dr. Wendy Smith.

The trouble here was the sugarless gum's main ingredient, Xylitol.  It's one of the most toxic products a dog can get a hold of.  You can find it in certain gums, diabetic candies, baked good even toothpaste.  Because of the amount Dobby consumed, Dr. Smith wanted him taken to an animal hospital near Akron.

"They monitored his blood sugar and you know his liver functions and things like that and the levels were higher than they liked.  So, instead of just being there over night, he was there another night," said Mike Gauntner of Austintown, Dobby's owner.

While the gum incident caused quite a scare for the Gauntner family, not to mention the costly vet bills, Xylitol isn't the only household item pet owners should be aware of.  Chocolate, grapes and raisins, fatty table scraps, onions and garlic, compost and human medications all pose serious health risks.

"A lot of times when dogs get into products the packaging becomes more of a problem than anything the plastic, the wrappers, things like that.  It really upsets their stomach and those things need to come out or sometimes can cause an obstruction as well," said Dr. Smith.

Veterinarians were concerned the gum would cause an obstruction in Dobby's stomach.  Thankfully, it didn't.  His owners say if there is anything to be learned it's to thoroughly check your home before you leave the pet alone.

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