a human hand holding a bunch of grapes and a dog smelling them
Can Dogs Eat Fruit?

Can Dogs Eat Grapes?

Grapes are one of the best things about the Fall season. These tasty fruits are a very common treat for adults and kids! They may seem harmless and healthy… But are they a good idea for your canine friend? Can dogs eat grapes? Here is all you need to know on this subject!

Can dogs eat grapes?

a bunch of green grapes

No, grapes are not safe for dogs to eat.

The reason why grapes are poisonous to dogs remains a bit of a mystery. However, we are now sure that a chemical compound in this fruit is responsible for a fast and catastrophic kidney damage and consequent kidney failure. Usually there’s not much quantity needed to cause harm – for example, in a small dog, like a Chihuahua, one grape could be enough to cause damage.

The effect grapes have on the body is remarkably variable. Some dogs experience serious trouble only by eating a couple, while others only have symptoms if they delight themselves with a feast of grapes! Because the mechanism underlying the toxicity is unknown and the intensity of the side effects so unexpected, the best you can do is to avoid both fresh and dried grapes (raisins and sultanas).

What are the signs of toxicity?

a dog looking to the left, with a few bunches of grapes surrounding them

The symptoms tend to occur between 12-24 hours after the dog eats grapes. These can include:

  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea. You may see pieces of grapes in your dog’s stool or vomit.
  • Increased urination and drinking a lot (initial stages of kidney failure)
  • Decreased urination or not urinating (sign of the kidneys shutting down)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy, dehydration and bad breath

What to do if my dog ate grapes?

a bunch of purple grapes

If your dog ate grapes, it is usually an emergency situation. Dogs react to grape toxicity in a very individual way – even one grape can make your dog sick, no matter the body weight, age or health status. However, the more grapes a dog has eaten, the more serious it can be. Do not induce vomiting unless you’re instructed to do so. Take your dog to your local veterinarian as soon as possible.

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