There's no denying the UK is a nation of barbecue lovers.
More than 100 million Brits enjoyed a BBQ last summer – but they can prove extremely hazardous for our beloved pets.
This is because certain foods – such as meat bones – can cause upset stomachs and choking.
So, if you’re wanting to fire up the BBQ this week, you might want to note which foods are a no-go for your canine companion.
To help you sort the tasty from the toxic, the pet experts at Bob Martin are here to tell us which five barbecue foods we shouldn’t feed our dogs this summer…
This may surprise you, as there's nothing a dog loves more than gnawing on a meaty bone. But in reality, bones can actually be far more dangerous for dogs than you may think. Bones that are made specifically for dogs are fine, but you should avoid giving them the discarded ones from BBQ meat.
This is because bones can splinter into small fragments, especially when cooked. They can therefore become a choking hazard, pierce your pets gums, and can even cause internal damage if swallowed.
Make sure to dispose of any bones as soon as you're finished, so your dog isn't tempted to start gnawing on them.
Corn on the cob
Corn on the cob is one of the most popular veggies to put on the barbecue, but it should be saved for just humans. It is dangerous for our dogs, as gnawing on it may lead them to ingest a large chunk of cob, which can cause both choking and intestinal blockages.
The good news is that the sweetcorn itself is actually good for dogs. The kernels are full of protein and fatty acids that provide them with energy.
To let your pet join in on the barbecue fun, remove the corn from the cob, and dispose of the cob before your dog sees it as a new chew toy.
It may be the perfect nacho dip for us, but guacamole can be poisonous for dogs. Avocados contain a toxin called persin, which can be lethal for some animals. Although dogs are more resistant to it, the toxin can still cause some damage to their stomachs.
Guacamole can be even more harmful to dogs if you add some spice. Dogs have sensitive stomachs, and they can't handle spicy food the same way that most humans can. If they eat it, they're likely to suffer from vomiting, diarrhoea, and dehydration.
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Onions are very toxic for dogs, and can cause serious complications. This is because they contain a toxic ingredient called n-propyl disulfide, which can impact red blood cells.
N-propyl disulfide is found in every part of the onion, and does not break down when the vegetable is cooked, so it should be completely avoided.
As well as not feeding your dog the vegetable itself, you should make sure to keep an eye out for onion in ingredients lists.
Grapes and raisins
Grapes and raisins are highly toxic for dogs – even the smallest amount causes serious damage, and can potentially be fatal.
However, dogs don't have to avoid fruit all together. Many fruits are safe for your dog to eat as a treat, and some even have great health benefits. For example, both watermelon flesh and blueberries are low calorie, and full of antioxidants that support your pet's immune system.
A spokesperson for Bob Martin toldTeamDogs: “When having a barbecue, try not to give into those puppy dog eyes and end up overfeeding them. Most barbecue food is very salty and can make dogs dehydrate, especially on hot days. Stick to small portions and keep their water bowl full throughout the day.”
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