Can Dogs Safely Eat Tomatoes
Commercially prepared pet foods even those hyped to be of premium quality may not have all the necessary nutrients that will ensure the pet’s overall health. This is why dog owners would still provide the pet with supplements and vitamins. Fruits and vegetables are good sources of these essential nutrients. Some common people foods though have toxic effects on the dog thus owners need to know which of these people foods can cause poisoning.
Humans use tomatoes, a member of the nightshade family in varied ways. People eat raw tomatoes or use the fruit as ingredient in sauces and in dishes. Tomatoes have loads of healthful benefits for humans. This red edible fruit is rich in lycopene, a potent antioxidant. This red fruit is known to prevent heart diseases, cataracts and cancer.
Dog owners have the habit of sharing whatever is being eaten with the pet. Are tomatoes safe for the dogs? Plants that belong to the nightshade family have some toxic effects when consumed thus being a member of this family, tomatoes are noted to have some toxic effects too. Alkaloids, the naturally occurring substance that have some poisonous effects is present in tomatoes. Unwanted effects of ingesting tomatoes range from being mildly irritating to fatal.
Dogs can eat tomatoes. By eating tomatoes, dogs would get the healthful benefits humans get from these red fruits. Ripe tomatoes can be safely eaten by dogs but dog owners must keep the pet away from tomato plants as the leaves, the vines as well as the green unripe fruits has solinum alkaloid which is highly toxic to dogs. This toxic substance present in tomatoes is called tomatin.
After the dog has ingested unripe tomatoes, the solinum alkalois would take effect and the dog would show signs of poisoning. Excessive drooling, vomiting, diarrhea or constipation are signs of tomato toxicity. The toxic substance tomatin is not efficiently absorbed by the intestines thus dogs would suffer from stomach upsets. Dogs that have eaten large amounts of the unripe tomatoes would suffer from severe symptoms of poisoning that can even result to the death of the pet. The heart and the central nervous system will be affected by the toxin thus the dog will develop tremors, have breathing difficulties and suffer muscle weakness. The toxin found in unripe tomatoes can cause heart arrhythmias, a condition that can lead to the death of the dog.
Tomato toxicity is dose dependent. The dangerous effects of this fruit would depend on the amount of fruit ingested in relation to body weight. Tomato toxicity can be prevented by making sure that the pet only ingests ripe fruits.
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