July is national picnic month

Mar 1, 2021 1:36:27 PM

Out for a picnic with your dog?

Here is our poochie picnic etiquette…

Although we all want to love our dogs and make them really happy all year round, there are some human foods that should not be fed this summer, or at all. It really does go without saying that your diet and your dog’s diet go through different digestive systems. Of course, if we are taking them on a summertime picnic, we would love for them to share our joy of the experience. And our poochie picnic partner will not be shy about looking at you with those yearning eyes, whilst doing their best Jedi mind trick on you.

The best option is to give them part of their Trophy feed at the picnic rather than topping up with human food. However, if the drool and puppy eyes get the better of you, make sure you do not offer them the following items!

  1. Alcohol should not be fed as it causes lack of coordination and poor breathing. It can also potentially put them at risk of coma, and even death. Always provide fresh water. Even in tiny amounts, alcohol can influence dogs in the same way it can people, just remember your dog’s body weight is significantly less than a human’s and its tolerance of alcohol is significantly less too.

  2. Apples may seem harmless, unfortunately the apple seed does contain small amounts of cyanide. Therefore, it is best to core your apple before feeding to your dog.

  3. Other fruits such as plums and peaches have stones that contain cyanide too. These are toxic, and the size of the stone can cause obstructions. Grapes and raisins are toxic, even in small amounts.

  4. Chocolate contains the drugs theobromine and caffeine, and dark chocolate is very toxic for dogs.

  5. Caffeine is particularly dangerous for dogs and therefore tea and coffee should not be given to them.

  6. Even bones, particularly cooked chicken bones (mmmmm, spicy wings) can splinter and get trapped in the dog’s throat or cause serious issues in the stomach or intestines if swallowed.

  7. Uncooked garlic, onions and chives are all high risk and affect the canine’s red blood cell count leading to anaemia.

  8. Fat trimmings such as pork, duck, or other pure fats, are not a good option, especially if fed in excess as this can lead to obesity and pancreatitis.

  9. Liver is a form of offal.  Tiny amounts are OK if it is cooked. Even so, too much is too high in vitamin A; this is particularly bad for puppies as it will affect bone development.

  10. Milk and dairy products are triggers for diarrhoea, as adult dogs do not tolerate lactose in the same way that puppies can and in some cases, this may trigger an allergy.

  11. Sugary and salty items should always be minimised and avoided where possible. Additional salt and sugar should not be supplemented to a dog’s diet. Remember that gravy for humans can be loaded with salt.

  12. Lastly, never leave ashtrays or tobacco in reach of your dog.

On a picnic, or at any time for that matter, should any toxic material be given accidentally to your dog, always try to note how much has been consumed so that your Vet can make an accurate risk assessment.

The range of pet treats on the market now is both amazing and bewildering, but why not take a few of your pal’s favourite treats instead of feeding them from the picnic rug?

In terms of the most important items to take for your dog on a picnic:

  1. Water, lots of it and something to drink from. Prosecco is not a suitable alternative!

  2. Something to shade them with. Nature does well here, but if you are going to an exposed area, such as the beach, additional shelter will be needed.

Enjoy this special time of year with your special friend. We will be! Why not share a photo of you both on a day out with us on socails.

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