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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 21220
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 husband was very careless and was attempting to open a head

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My husband was very careless and was attempting to open a head of garlic per a utube video he watched. apparently the head of garlic 'exploded' and a few cloves fell on the ground. He claimed that he picked up all the pieces after I got really upset because I've told him how toxic garlic is for dogs. Clearly he lied because a little while later he found a clove on the stairs and a small piece had been chewed from the tip of the clove. We have 4 dogs but I'm pretty sure which dog might have ingested that little piece of garlic. Problem is, he's a tiny italian greyhound, so he weighs in around 7 pounds or so. What should I do in the event that he did ingest a little bit of a garlic clove?

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today. My apologies that your query wasn't answered earlier. Different experts do come online at different times. Anyway, I have just come online, read about Humphrey's situation, and wanted to allay your worries.

It is quite true that garlic is not something we'd want to feed to our dogs. That said, unlike toxicities with raisins/grapes, a small one time dose of garlic is unlikely to cause any lasting harm. If anything, we may see Humphrey develop stomach upset from this.

The toxicity concern we have with garlic is when it is administered in large doses or repeatedly (as some people mistakenly will use it trying to deter fleas). In these cases, the metabolites from the garlic cause damage to the dog's red blood cells. And with this happens, we can see weakness, pale gums, anemia, a fast heart rate or collapse.

Overall, a few nibbles of this clove is unlikely to cause Humphrey any harm. I would advise feeding him a light diet (ie boiled chicken, white fish or scrambled egg with rice) for a few days if he appears to have GI upset. Otherwise, as long as we do not give any more garlic and do not see the above signs of anemia (which are unlikely here), then it is likely he will not suffer any issue with this garlic misadventure.

I hope this information is helpful.

If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!

All the best,

Dr. B.


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