Dear Floofy Column – March 2015
I watched a show where a dog made bubbles from a piece of chewing gum. Is that possible and would it be OK to try it with my pooch?
Hubba Bubba Cool!
I don’t know if your show was filled with computer animation or special devices to help the doggie use his snout in more human than canine ways, but I’m guessing there was some help involved. Nevertheless, this reminds me of a story that happened to me.
While I was visiting family in West Virginia at the end of December, one of my relatives who always has at least three packs of gum, reached into his pocket and pushed a packet towards me.
“Want a piece of gum?” he asked. “It’s pineapple.”
Since I was in the pseudo South, I had a glass of sweet tea in my hand and declined. After he offered the rest of the clan his supply, he turned towards my dog, Ginger, and asked her if she wanted some. Ginger, a sweet rescue who warms to people slowly, moved towards him and planted herself in front of his feet sniffing out the scent of her potential “treat.”
“Can she have some?” he asked me.
Why on earth anyone would give gum to a dog was beyond me as I couldn’t recall watching any dog chew gum. I asked if it was sugar free, recalling that somewhere I had heard that an ingredient in it was toxic to dogs.
Turns out that it was and I politely declined on Ginger’s behalf, citing her safety as the reason. In reality, there are a hodgepodge of items we encounter that can have grave results when ingested by our furry friends. And the list goes beyond the typical holiday precautions that are often shared by media and other sources when poinsettias are in abundance.
In fact, I recently discovered that in some dogs grapes can be toxic. Not all dogs react to them, but it could be fatal for some. So with all the random items to worry about or not be aware of, I determined to source out the culprits. I located a free poster download from DoggieDrawings.net that can be shared with those who want a quick reference for potential hazards from food items around the house. I share this with my friends who don’t have dogs so they know what not to offer my pooch. And I’m offering it to you. Some of the items may surprise you.
So, the next time someone offers your dog a stick of gum or you want to try a new trick, you can point to this list and decline with confidence.