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Garlic, Onions and Susceptibility to Toxicity for Dogs and Cats

Dr. Jeff

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Hi everyone-

This forum thread is for discussing the conventional vs. homeopathic conceptions of toxicity associated with garlic, onions, other foods, medications, etc.

This is an extremely important topic because of the topic it raises.

That being the topic of each of our pets sensitivity (aka susceptibility) to all environmental factors that can also act as toxins.

For example, many of you have asked why some vets say that garlic is toxic while others do not.

Click/tap here for a blog article that discusses susceptibility vs. toxicity.

Here's an extract from a journal article that shows how difficult it is to induce toxicity to garlic:


However, despite the findings in this study, the authors conclude that garlic should not be fed to dogs.

Hmmm...

As they write on the Springtime site (and yes, they have a vested interest in saying that garlic is safe) it is the dose that matters the most.

That is partially correct but doesn't take sensitivity to garlic (or any other potential toxin) is taken into account.

This is the same sensitivity that can be seen by one dog getting kennel cough while another with the same amount of exposure does not.

Here is a great article from the government of India about this important topic:


BTW-This article is also in your HMDM folder for future highlighting.

I have one extreme case mentioned at a vet conference of the "morbid susceptibility" discussed in this article that I should mention.

That is a kitty who developed a transient hemolytic anemia whenever he was given pizza with garlic powder!

However, I'm willing to bet that this kitty was not evaluated holistically as reflected by BEAM and early warning signs.

Personally, I've never seen a case like this in 34+ years of practice (how about you @Dr. Christina @Dr. Sara and @Dr. Erin?).

Here's a well-balanced holistic veterinary magazine article about using garlic:

 

Dr. Christina

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Jun 15, 2017
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I have also never seen a case in 37 years of practice with problems from garlic.

In the last 10 years I have heard of a few, and totally agree with Dr. Jeff that it is sensitivity, which can happen with anything. I feel the benefits outweigh the risk, even in cats and small dogs. I regularly mixed garlic into my raw meaty bone mixture for my cats.

Dr. Christina
 
F

Frances

Hi, When I first joined HA I listened to a webinar and they mentioned that a small amount go garlic, like one clove in a pound of food would be ok, because garlic has many benefits. Is it okay to give garlic, and if so how much and how often?

I was reluctant to add garlic, but I added a clove to 2 pounds of home cooked dog food. I had only done this twice and my pets have been fine.

I am concerned if it is a good thing, especially as my dogs have had health issues. One had hemolytic anemia and is finally recovered..and my other dog had a liver shunt and throws up....but I will say, knowing and understanding my dog's BEAM has helped me see what causes him to throw up and what works well.
I have learned sooooooo much from Dr jeff and Dr Christina, and this group and I am truly grateful.
 

Dr. Sara

Veterinarian
HA! Faculty
Joined
Dec 30, 2018
Messages
298
Hi everyone-

This forum thread is for discussing the conventional vs. homeopathic conceptions of toxicity associated with garlic, onions, other foods, medications, etc.

This is an extremely important topic because of the topic it raises.

That being the topic of each of our pets sensitivity (aka susceptibility) to all environmental factors that can also act as toxins.

For example, many of you have asked why some vets say that garlic is toxic while others do not.

Click/tap here for a blog article that discusses susceptibility vs. toxicity.

Here's an extract from a journal article that shows how difficult it is to induce toxicity to garlic:


However, despite the findings in this study, the authors conclude that garlic should not be fed to dogs.

Hmmm...

As they write on the Springtime site (and yes, they have a vested interest in saying that garlic is safe) it is the dose that matters the most.

That is partially correct but doesn't take sensitivity to garlic (or any other potential toxin) is taken into account.

This is the same sensitivity that can be seen by one dog getting kennel cough while another with the same amount of exposure does not.

Here is a great article from the government of India about this important topic:


BTW-This article is also in your HMDM folder for future highlighting.

I have one extreme case mentioned at a vet conference of the "morbid susceptibility" discussed in this article that I should mention.

That is a kitty who developed a transient hemolytic anemia whenever he was given pizza with garlic powder!

However, I'm willing to bet that this kitty was not evaluated holistically as reflected by BEAM and early warning signs.

Personally, I've never seen a case like this in 34+ years of practice (how about you @Dr. Christina @Dr. Sara and @Dr. Erin?).

Here's a well-balanced holistic veterinary magazine article about using garlic:

I have never seen a case of garlic toxicity, and I do recommend garlic at low levels for both dogs and cats. Certain individuals can be exquisitely sensitive to substances that do not bother the vast majority of animals. It only makes sense to use caution, and gradually introduce animals to any new food or supplement, especially one that, at high levels (like garlic and onions), could cause toxicity.
 

Dr. Jeff

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Thanks so much for the kind words Frances.

How much does your pup (who didn't have hemolytic anemia) weigh?

I wouldn't take a risk with your other dog who is predisposed and has already had hemolytic anemia.

What kind of garlic do you want to use?

Also, Earth Animal may be with us tomorrow night night on the webinar, so you can also ask then (whether Tom is there or not).
 

Dr. Jeff

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In the vein of full-disclosure, here's another well-balanced article that discusses garlic in dogs and cats:


Their conclusion:

Many people presume that supplements are
safer than drugs, but the reality is that there is
very limited safety data on dietary supplements
for horses, dogs, and cats to determine safe use.
The committee was unable to determine an
upper limit of safe use for the three supplements,
lutein, evening primrose oil, and garlic. This
shortage of data resulted in trying to estimate
existing intake levels as those presumed to be
safe. The committee believes these levels are
conservative for lutein and evening primrose oil,
but probably more on target for garlic because of
known reports of adverse events.

So, avoid giving your dogs and cats a head (each head is 10 or more cloves) or two of garlic!

Note that they discuss the "upper limit" not mindful moderate use.

We'll discuss more about this tonight.
 

lizkunz

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Joined
Aug 29, 2017
Messages
124
For the first time, I tried fresh garlic tonight as directed. They managed to pick out some of the small pieces. So I'm not worried about the toxicity. Maybe they will work their way up. On another note, Green Sprays came today and sprayed our yard with a garlic solution for mosquitos. Everywhere I go I smell garlic!
 
F

Frances

Thanks so much for the kind words Frances.

How much does your pup (who didn't have hemolytic anemia) weigh?

I wouldn't take a risk with your other dog who is predisposed and has already had hemolytic anemia.

What kind of garlic do you want to use?

Also, Earth Animal may be with us tomorrow night night on the webinar, so you can also ask then (whether Tom is there or not).
Hello Dr Jeff,
I wasn't in attendance for the webinar but am listening to it now and gathering information. My 1 year old Maltese is just under 7 pounds.
I would prefer fresh garlic in the home made food I make.

Today I made over 1 pound of ground meat with veggies, some herbs
(parsley, thyme and oregano) and added two small crushed garlic cloves. The food I prepare for him is always blended/ pureed.

Yes, keeping our older Maltese way from garlic and onions is the best right now, although she has been in the clear and back to normal for about three months.

Thank you for your advice.
frances
 

JoannC

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Joined
Oct 22, 2018
Messages
160
I am going to try a very small amount of garlic on Teddy not sure if he will eat it. Could it help if there was a remote chance of lung worm? This past weekend I had him on the deck and he was trying to pull me in one direction on a harness leash With me pulling in the other direction. After a bit of exertion he lowered his head and had a cough I had not heard in a long time. It sounded congested, like when he was 2 yrs old yet I know his lungs are clear. He did this one more time in the evening and has not coughed since. His in-house fecal stools were negative this week, but i wondered with all that he has been through if somehow I missed parasites in his lungs? Is that possible. When he was a kitten he had a cough like that Timmy never did, and when he did cough on Saturday it reminded me of that. A raspy cough. If lung worm is suspected, the vets locally want to exam, do a chest X-ray which I would not want to put him through and then a fecal special test. Not sure what it would be called. Can you tell if a cat has lung worm with a fecal test? His BEAM is 100% except for one day, last Saturday, he saw a Sun beam ray on the floor, and somehow lost his balance, and his hind legs briefly went out under him. He immediately regained his balance and no further episodes.

So would giving garlic help to expel lung worm if there, and is it best for Teddy to use fresh first, then try earth animal garlic if he won’t eat the fresh garlic? Thank you
 

Dr. Jeff

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You're welcome Frances, and yes and no JoAnn.

A standard fecal float may not show lungworms.

There's a special test for that, right @robinafolson?

Yes, a tiny amount of raw garlic could be useful for any parasites as well as his overall balance.

If he's hyper-sensitive to it, you may know after just 1 or 2 meals, but as always, keep an eye on his BEAM.
 

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