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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 17139
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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My dog just ate pasta with sauce that included cooked onions

Customer Question

My dog just ate pasta with sauce that included cooked onions and cooked onions- both diced fairly coursely as well as italian sausage. I would say she ate half a large restaurant portion.
She is a 15 pound Maltese Yorkie Mix. How worried should I be.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 11 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian & I would like to help you with your wee one today.

How long ago?

How much onion was there?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Just about 20 minutes ago and probably a couple tablespoons of mined onion and garlic combined in what she ate. I saw 5g garlic or onion/ 1kg of dog wait but I have no idea how much that is.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 11 months ago.

Thank you,

That means that we see toxicity at that dose. So, it would translate to 34g of either that could cause her adverse signs (ie GI upset, vomiting, diarrhea, but also anemia as the toxin can rupture red blood cells). So, if you think we had more then 2 tablespoons of onion in this pasta, we need to be proactive here.

Since it was 20 minutes ago, we can induce vomiting now. To induce vomiting at home, you can administer 3% hydrogen peroxide orally at a dose of 1ml per pound. (2 teaspoons per 10 pounds of body weight). You can give it via dropper, syringe, turkey baster – we just want to get it in. After giving this orally, move the abdomen around or get your wee one walking about to get things mixing. This should usually lead to vomiting. If it is unsuccessful after 10 minutes then it can be repeated twice more. And if we still have no vomiting, then you'd need to consider seeing your local vet (or ER vet) so that apomorphine (a very strong injectable emetic) can be administered just get this out of the stomach and avoid any adverse issues.

As well or alternatively, you can also consider administering activated charcoal at this stage. This is available over the counter from the pharmacy (ask for the high strength version, not the one for gas) and works by binding any remaining material in the stomach. For activated charcoal, we tend to give 1-4 grams per pound every 8 hrs. This can be mixed with food to be fed or with water to syringe feed (do note that it stains, so keep it away from white carpets/clothes). This will just limit how much is absorbed and reduce the intoxication risk here.

Finally, after the above, we do want to try to address any potential GI upset here for the next 24-48 hours. To do so, you can consider offering a light diet option for a few days. Examples of an easily digestible diet include cooked white rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, scrambled egg, or meat baby food (as long as its free from garlic or onion powder). Ideally, we want to offer this as small frequent meals to keep the stomach settled. And if you see nausea, then we can also treat with an antacid. There are a number of antacids that are available over the counter and pet friendly. Ones we can use here include Pepcid (More Info/Dose @http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/famotidine-pepcid) or Zantac (More Info/Dose @ http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/ranitidine-hcl-zantac). Whichever you use, we'd give this 20 minutes before food to allow absorption and of course double check with your vet before use if your wee one has any known health issues or is on any medications you haven't mentioned.

Overall, onions are dangerous for dogs. The sausage only would cause GI upset +/- pancreatitis but it is onion that can cause issues with the red blood cells. Therefore, if there was more then 2 tbsp. in what she had, we'd want to use the above to avoid any harm for her.

Please take care,

Dr. B.

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Expert:  Dr. B. replied 11 months ago.
Hi Amy,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
nekovet