Medical Monday #5: Are Grapes and Raisins Poisonous to Dogs?

Many pet parents know that chocolate is poisonous to their pet, but they don’t always realize that grapes and raisins are too!

Small amounts of these seemingly harmless household items can be fatally toxic to dogs. 

The crazy thing is, it is not generally known why grapes and raisins cause problems for dogs. I remember learning is school that it had something to do with the tannins in the grapes binding to certain minerals in the body and that causes issues, however I couldn’t find research online to support this, and its possible my memory is blurred. 

What should I watch out for (PetMD)?

Abdominal Pain





Lack of Urine Production: this is a sign of sudden kidney failure

If I know my dog ate grapes or raisins, what should I do?

This is an emergency and requires immediate attention. Call your veterinarian, emergency clinic, or the Pet Poison Helpline at 1-855-213-6680 immediately.

Photo courtesy of the Pet Poison Helpline Google Plus Page

Photo courtesy of the Pet Poison Helpline Google Plus Page

One thing all pet parents should have in their house is hydrogen peroxide, and know how much you should give your dog to induce vomiting. However, ALWAYS speak with a veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline before giving your pet hydrogen peroxide. Even if your pet vomits after eating something toxic, you should always take them to your vet for further treatment and care.

Rachel, you worked as a veterinary technician, what did you hospital do when a pet ate something toxic?

Initially, we made them vomit using an injection of apomorphine, which will cause them to start vomiting within 30 seconds to one minute. Then, we feed them activated charcoal which helps prevent the absorption of toxins. Depending what they ate, when they ate it, and how much, we would run blood work and urine, and keep them hospitalized with IV fluids.

How do I prevent my pet from eating something toxic?

Firstly, know what common household items are toxic and keep them out of reach of your pets. Also make sure all of your family members know as well!

Pet Poison Helpline has a list of poisons, here.


Have you ever had your pet eat something toxic? What did you do? How did your veterinarian proceed?


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9 Comment

  1. Reply
    July 21, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    No more wine with dinner?
    Kyla recently posted…Sobbing SundayMy Profile

    1. Reply
      July 23, 2014 at 8:53 am

      Lol, Kyla you are so sophisticated!

  2. Reply
    Caren Gittleman
    July 21, 2014 at 3:44 pm

    I once refused to review a book because the woman had written in it that she used to give her dog frozen grapes as a snack…(oh yessss she did!)….when I told her why I wouldn’t review the book she pooh-poohed it. Wonder if her dog is still alive.
    Caren Gittleman recently posted…A Children’s Book with a Powerful Message:How Meg Changed Her Mind by Ethel K.CoffeyMy Profile

    1. Reply
      July 23, 2014 at 8:54 am

      Caren good for you!! The problem is that what grapes are capable of doing to the body are not visible (i.e. kidney failure) and although her dog’s kidney levels could have been elevated, she was unaware, and for some people, that is enough to ignore the issue.

  3. Reply
    July 21, 2014 at 4:21 pm

    You’re right, many pet owners know that chocolate is poisonous for dogs, but don’t know that grapes and raisins are too. I only found out about grapes and raisins being toxic to dogs two years ago – and I’ve been a pet owner for many years.
    This is valuable information that needs to be shared. Thank you.
    Barb recently posted…Flea and Tick Protection-what is safe to use?My Profile

    1. Reply
      July 23, 2014 at 8:55 am

      Barb, no problem! I didn’t know that either until I started working in vet med, that is why it is always important to share these pieces of information.

  4. Reply
    Sarah Hadley
    July 22, 2014 at 3:58 am

    I am very possessive when it comes to pet food and this is a very useful list for keeping my pet away from toxic food.

    1. Reply
      July 23, 2014 at 8:56 am

      Sarah, thank you for stopping by! I am glad you found this list of toxic food very useful, I know many of them come as a shock to owners and its therefore very important to remind pet parents of the everyday items that seem harmless.

  5. Reply
    M. K. Clinton
    July 22, 2014 at 6:37 pm

    I notice that eggs are listed in the small print! I definitely need to investigate that further. I don’t give the boys raw eggs, but they do eat the occasional soft scrambled egg. Now, I worried! ☺
    M. K. Clinton recently posted…Basset Hounds 101 ~ Part 4My Profile

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