Dahlias can be poisonous to dogs. If your dogs ingest any part of the dahlia plant, they may experience some mild symptoms. These could include vomiting, diarrhea, or abdominal pain. There are a few precautions that you should take if you have one of these flowers in your yard. First and foremost, keep plants away, including dahlias, from your dogs. Second, never give them any part of the flower – even the petals – as they can be toxic. Third, if your dogs eat a dahlia, make an appointment with their veterinarian as quickly as possible for diagnostics and treatment advice. Learn more about these things through this blog. Stay safe and read through this blog to avoid any toxic surprises!
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Dahlia Poisoning in Dogs: What Causes It?
A toxic substance in the dahlia causes skin irritation and gastrointestinal upset in dogs. Dahlias and their tubers (roots) contain phototoxic polyacetylene substances, which can cause skin irritation if they come into contact with sunlight. The exact nature of the toxicity in dogs and whether or not it is caused by phototoxic polyacetylene substances remains unknown.
Dahlia poisoning in dogs is a condition that results from eating the leaves or flowers of the dahlia plant. This can happen when your dog eats any part of the flower or foliage, including the petals, stamen, and pistil. Dahlias are native to North America but have become increasingly popular as landscaping plants in many parts of the world.
Dahlia Poisoning Symptoms in Dogs
If you’re worried about your dog getting dahlia poisoning, there are a few things that you should keep in mind. The first thing to do is call your veterinarian as soon as possible if your dog shows any signs of weakness or distress. Dahlia can be toxic to the whole body, so even if only one part of the body is affected, it’s important to get help as soon as possible.
Other symptoms that may indicate dahlia poisoning include:
- Mild Dermatitis
- Stomach problems
- Unwanted weight loss
- Incoordination or unsteadiness on their feet/legs
- Behavior changes such as being more playful than usual OR an increased intensity in aggression towards other animals
- Painful red patches
Dahlia Poisoning in Dogs: A Clinical Assessment
Give the veterinary staff as much information as possible about the dahlia exposure when you arrive at the clinic, including how much was consumed and how long ago it occurred. The group will work alongside the vet as they perform a thorough physical checkup. The vitals, including your pet’s heart rate, pulse, and reflexes, will be examined. He may be tested for traces of the plant in his vomit.
Complete blood count, serum chemistry, urinalysis, and fecal sample are common diagnostic tests in any healthcare setting. The goal of these examinations is to determine your dog’s overall health and to rule out the presence of any underlying diseases that could exacerbate the toxicity, however mild it may be. The staff will examine your dog’s fur and skin closely to determine if the dermal exposure has left any lasting effects that need to be treated.
Dahlia Poisoning in Dogs: First Aid
The amount of ingestion and the results of the tests will determine how to treat your dog. The most common method to eliminate the plant is to induce vomiting with hydrogen peroxide. Toxins will be absorbed by activated charcoal, and the body will be cleansed with gastric lavage. Kidneys will be flushed with intravenous fluids to prevent dehydration from vomiting and diarrhea. Your vet will likely recommend a topical ointment to soothe your dog’s irritated skin and prevent further discomfort.
Dogs Recover from Dahlia Poisoning
Assuming you took your dog to a vet right away, dahlia poisoning can be treated and cured in as little as 24 hours. You should call your vet if the skin irritation persists for longer than a week or two despite treatment. If there are no underlying complications or infection, and depending on how many dahlias your dog ate, the dog has a good chance of recovering. Dahlias and other poisonous plants should be relocated from areas where your dog can access them. Please bring your dog back for follow-up visits as needed and give us a call if you have any questions as he heals.