Vet advises Exeter pet owners to avoid feeding dogs and cats barbecue scraps

With temperatures set to reach up to 30 degrees this week, an expert is warning pet owners against the potential dangers for dogs and cats eating food from the barbecue.

According to a 2019 study, one in three Brits feed their pets food directly from the dinner table but barbecue foods in particular can be extremely unhealthy and even dangerous for animals.

Leticia Fidalgo Buron, vet and technical manager at Webbox, said: “While many of us love a barbecue, it’s important that people don’t leave food unattended or feed their pets scraps – even if they look like they’re enjoying it.

“Not only can the high salt levels in most barbecue foods make them very thirsty but it can, in serious cases, cause high temperatures and even seizures.

“What’s more, barbecuing often does not properly cook the meat all the way through, meaning animals can get all kinds of nasty bacteria from the raw meat, including salmonella and listeria. At the very least, this can cause some digestive upset such as diarrhoea or vomiting but can sometimes lead to something even more serious.

“It is a common misconception that you can feed dogs bones when, in fact, this is highly dangerous. Every year, I see hundreds of cases of dogs with severe gastrointestinal problems or internal damage whose owners have given them the small T-Bones from a steak, thinking it will not be an issue.

“Bones, especially chicken bones, can get stuck in their intestines and stomach, causing all kinds of internal damage or can cause the dog to choke if it gets stuck in their oesophagus.

“Lastly, the carbonisation on the outside of burnt meat can cause vomiting or other stomach upset for our pets, with some experts citing it as a cause of cancer.”

The Exeter Daily