Monday, July 11, 2011

Grape and Raisin Toxicity, A Guest Blog By Heather Reynolds Of Trupanion Pet Insurance

Heather Reynolds is a pet lover and internet journalist at Trupanion, North America’s fastest growing pet insurance company. Trupanion offers 90% coverage of veterinary bills with no payout limits. Enrolled pets receive lifetime coverage for diagnostic tests, surgeries, and medications if they become sick or injured.

Did you know that cats should never eat grapes or raisins? Grape and raisin toxicity is a serious health condition and can occur in cats after they ingest just one grape or raisin. While it is not clearly known what makes this fruit toxic, the outcome is severe.

Because grapes and raisins are so commonly found in households, it’s important to be aware of the symptoms in case your curious little friend finds one. If the fruit is ingested, a cat will normally start showing symptoms within 48 hours, so it’s important to see a veterinarian right away. 

Symptoms include:

·        Vomiting
·        Diarrhea
·        Weakness
·        Refusal to eat
·        Increased thirst
·        Abdominal pain

Eventually, the cat will be unable to urinate and will develop acute renal failure (where the kidneys suddenly fail to do their job). It’s a very quick and sad progression.

But this condition is curable! If grape or raisin ingestion is suspected, the main goal is to prevent the toxins from being absorbed by the body. So, a veterinarian will most likely induce vomiting with the use of hydrogen peroxide or apomorphine and then use charcoal pills to prevent any remaining toxins from being absorbed. Often, intravenous fluid therapy is also needed.

The cost of treatment can range from $100 to over $1,700, depending on the severity of the condition.

Obviously, prevention is key for this condition. Make sure to keep all grapes and raisins fully out of reach of cats (remembering that cats have incredibly climbing skills and some ‘hiding spots’ like the top of the refrigerator may not be effective). Also, make sure all family members and visitors know the danger of this fruit, as well as other common foods that are toxic to cats like chocolate, onions and garlic, because if your family is anything like mine, ‘people food’ sometimes finds its way to pets from well-meaning friends who just can’t stand those sweet begging eyes.

How do you keep toxic items like this out of reach of your feline friends?


  1. Thanks for this! I have re-posted it. x

  2. @Sixties Vintage you are welcome! Heather always writes informative and important posts for us. Thanks for sharing too! xoxo

  3. Dear Caren, Thank you for this post ! Mom used to know it's toxic but we didn't know it's this bad if cat eat it !!! It's Evil Food !

  4. I had no idea!! Very very good to know

  5. Caren, this is such important information. Thanks so much for inviting Heather Reynonlds to share it. I never knew this.

  6. We have plenty of those "toxic" foods. Thanks so much for the info x

  7. Wonderful article and so important!

  8. very informative content and i enjoyed reading your blog keep it up.

  9. @Mr.Puddy, it must certainly IS "evil food"!! You are right! Thanks to Heather for posting this!

    @Flights thanks!

    @jen yes Heather does a great job, thanks!

    @Caro you "have" those toxic foods? I hope not!! ((((hugs))))

    @Mario you are most welcome my special kitty! xoxo

    @Knotted Fingers, thank you, yep it is important to know, thanks to Heather!

  10. MOn Dieu! Thanks so much Caren, for this informative post, we didn't know about it, really!
    Oh gosh, it's dangerous,thanks for publish this post!
    love and purrs

  11. @Luna you are most welcome!! Yes they are super dangerous! xoxo

  12. Dear Caren, Cody and Dakota,
    Good thing me thinks grapes and raisens is disgusting! Mommy thanks yous for the post!
    Please give kisses to Cody for mes

  13. Great article and a terrific reminder. We don't have grapes at our house because the Man thinks they look like eyeballs. Raisins go from cereal box to bipeds mouths - so I guess we are pretty safe here, but I am going to send a link to this post out to my friends.

  14. Thanks for remembering to mention onions and garlic! Mama used to let me lick her plate until she heard that those foods are toxic, now she doesn't!

  15. @catfromhell yes they are disgusting! You are welcome but it is Heather we have to thank for writing this for us! xoxo

    @Fisher and staff yes it sure is! lol at "man thinks they look like eyeballs" Thanks so much for sharing!!! xoxo

    @Athena yes thank you Heather!!! I don't think I knew about garlic til recent years myself!

  16. Fortunately, a) my human is already aware of this, and even better, b) I think grapes and raisins are icky. They are very careful here about the human food we get to eat. Usually we get stuff like grilled salmon or roast chicken - yum!

  17. Great info. We also want to remind your readers that many of the same foods listed as toxic to cats are also toxic to doggies.

  18. What great information. This was something we didn't know. We will make sure to be careful.

    Nubbin wiggles,
    Oskar & Pam too!

  19. Well interesting, first time i come to know by some1 that raisin and grapes are toxic for cat. Thanks for the information. I will take care of that.

  20. lol Caren, what I meant to say was I "like" those toxic foods. Good job Austin doesn't. It's like certain plants (lilies etc), he does keep away from them, but one can't be complacent. xox

  21. Very interesting! I never knew that!

  22. @Sparkle, well you are a smart cat so I figured YOU would already know! :) You are lucky you get salmon and chicken, I just get RABBIT! Love, Cody

    @Caro lol!! Whew! Thank goodness it is a human that likes that stuff! You made me nervous! lol xoxo

    @Guantes glad you will take care of it. Get rid of the grapes and raisins lol

    @Oskar I am glad you found out! It is bad for woofies too! xoxo

    @Artemisia yep! I am glad you mentioned that too!

  23. Thank you for this! Marmie had no idea grapes and raisions were bad for me. She eats raisins all the time!

  24. One of my kitties are so curious and tries to eat anything on the floor! I have to be really careful because as written on today's post, things commonly found in households can be very dangerous.

  25. I did not know this about grapes and raisins, thank you for the info. :-)

  26. Well, see, my Human says it really IS a good thing she hates raisins! And she's not into grapes all that much either, unless they're crushed and fermented, MOL!

  27. Great post! I never knew that - thanks for sharing!

  28. Always good to raise awareness of toxic things found in homes. Sometimes we forget!

  29. I will certainly pass this info on my SIL & daughters as they have cats in their homes.

    Check out today’s posts….
    The Filthy Truth
    What’s Happening to My Teeth, part 5

    ~Cathy Kennedy, Children's Author
    The Tale of Ole Green Eyes

  30. Always nice to provide information to help other pet owners. :) I really love the community here and am always excited to contribute.

  31. Wow I had no idea about this - I had some grapes get away from me and I think I got them all up but now I am paranoid (I saw Stella playing with one right after they fell and gathered all teh ones I saw but then a few days later I found one that had gotten stuck under the stove that they later found and played with). I knew they were a problem for dogs if they ate a lot but had no idea about cats - thanks so much for posting this!!

  32. Thanks for sharing this. Want to keep the kitties safe!

  33. Yep, I knew ... but it's always good to remember. I'm not sure my cats would eat them, but I guess you never know.

  34. Since these items are toxic to both dogs and cats, we try to be very mindful of keeping them safely out of reach!


  35. @Ann you are welcome!! YES! let's chat soon!!

    @Julia, better safe than sorry :)

    @Pat I do the same, I am completely paranoid about grapes, raisins and chocolate!

    @Amy thanks so much for stopping by! I know you have been crazy busy so I really appreciate it. Try not to worry too much about Stella, she probably didn't do anything but swat it under a couch or something. I guard the grapes like a hawk!

    @Amin you are welcome! Thank you!

    @Heather we love you too and thank you sooo much for yet another wonderful piece!

    @Cathy Kennedy I am hoping to get around to the blogs today but not sure that I can. I had a dear blogging friend call me and we were on the phone forever (due to my babbling), and I am watching the AllStar game tonight. I was gone most of the day. If I can get over there I will, sorry!!

    @OKcats so true!

    @Denise, you are welcome! Heather did a great job as always!

    @Spitty LOL about the crushed and fermented!!!

    @chocolate angel, you are most welcome!!

    @Tamago I am with you! I should have named Cody and Dakota "Hoover" and "Dirt Devil" because they both eat anything and EVERYTHING off of the floor!

    @Link, you are most welcome! I am glad that your Marmie read this so she can be careful with the raisins!

  36. Thanks for sharing this info. Pet Insurance can prevent you from having to make difficult decisions.

  37. I am aware of this fact and let me tell you that grapes are more harmful than raisins for pets especially for cats.

  38. I am aware of this fact and Grapes are more harmful than raisins for pets especially for cats.

  39. You might not think cats will eat raisins, but our cat licked out my daughter's cereal bowl (which had the remainder of her Raisin Bran). He got deathly sick and the vets wouldn't believe that I thought a raisin was the culprit (they'd never heard of that!). Now I'm wondering if he'd have even gotten sick from the raisin-soaked milk, even if he didn't actually eat a raisin?