Are acorns poisonous to dogs?

Remember — acorns can pose a threat to dogs.

Acorns contain tannic acid, which is believed to be the toxic element of the nut and can cause damage to the liver and kidneys. Ingested acorns can also cause intestinal blockages.

Heath Veterinary Clinics in Burgess Hill and Hurstpierpoint, West Sussex, treated a dog who had become very ill from eating the nuts.

Max, a four-year-old Labrador, was brought into the surgery when his owners noticed he was lethargic, acting out of character, unable to settle, and drooling excessively. He was given an emetic injection which induces vomiting as the vet suspected he could of ingested something toxic. Within minutes, Max vomited up a large number of acorns.

The dog had been playing in the woods earlier in the day but his owners hadn't realised he had been eating the nuts. After treatment Max improved quickly and thanks to the swift action by his owners initial reports showed that no harm had been done. Max was scheduled to have further tests to check there was no long-term damage.

Sarah Soloman, Practice Manager at Heath Vets, said: "Whilst it can be difficult to watch your dog's every move when out walking them, it's important to try and ensure they don't eat or play with acorns due to the toxic ingredient."

Signs of toxic illness can include vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, a lack of appetite, and lethargy. If your dog displays any of these symptoms take him to the vet immediately.

Tags: advice, health

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