Dogs will beg for whatever they see their owners eating or drinking—even if that human treat is poisonous to canines. Sometimes this applies to your morning cup of coffee. A daily dose of caffeine may be essential to your wellbeing, but the same can't be said for your furry companion. If your dog ingests coffee—whether in the form of beans, liquid, or grounds—it's important to take action quickly.
According to the American Kennel Club, the same stimulant that makes coffee so appealing to people can be disastrous for pets. Dogs are especially sensitive to caffeine, and in addition to getting a burst of energy, consuming coffee could raise their heart rate to dangerous levels. This is especially true for smaller dogs. Some symptoms of caffeine poisoning in dogs include panting, vomiting, restlessness, elevated body temperature, and abnormal heartbeats.
Like some substances that are toxic to dogs, a minuscule amount of coffee won't kill them. So if you catch Fido stealing a couple of laps from your mug, it's best to monitor them for signs of illness instead of rushing them to the vet right away. The situation is more serious if your dog gets into coffee grounds or coffee beans, which have a higher concentration of caffeine than brewed coffee.
In severe cases, gorging on coffee can cause coma, seizures, or even death in a dog. When you catch your dog with the morning's coffee grounds from the trash, you should contact your vet immediately or call the pet poison helpline before their condition worsens. If a doctor determines your animal is in danger, they can treat them by inducing vomiting or giving them fluids or activated charcoal to absorb the toxins.
Every dog owner wants to keep their pet safe, but harmful toxins are often hiding where you least expect them. Here are some common dangers to look out for the next time you walk your dog.