Pumpkin spice is everywhere during this time of year. From drinks to snacks, it seems like there’s no escaping it. But have you ever wondered if pumpkin pie spice is safe for your furry friend? In this article, we’ll delve into the potential dangers of pumpkin spice for pets and explore which ingredients could pose a risk.
What’s in Pumpkin Pie Spice?
Pumpkin pie spice is typically a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and either cloves or allspice. While items made with this spice may or may not contain actual pumpkin, it’s worth noting that pumpkin itself is safe for pets. In fact, it can even help with digestion and be recommended for pets with an upset stomach. So, let’s take a closer look at the individual ingredients.
While small amounts of cinnamon are not toxic to pets, a large spoonful of dry cinnamon powder could lead to respiratory issues. In addition, cinnamon oil can be toxic even in small amounts, causing irritation on the skin or in the mouth. Large overdoses or exposure to the essential oil can result in low blood sugar, liver disease, vomiting, diarrhea, and changes in heart rate, especially in cats.
Believe it or not, nutmeg contains a toxic substance called myristicin. However, the levels included in most foods are not likely to cause harm. It’s important to note that if your pet ingests a large amount of nutmeg powder or whole nuts, it could lead to vomiting, abdominal pain, changes in blood pressure and heart rate, and even disorientation, seizures, or hallucinations.
The potential danger with cloves lies mainly in substances like clove oil or ingestion of whole cloves, rather than the amount of powder used in recipes. Both clove oil and allspice, another common ingredient in pumpkin pie spice, contain compounds called eugenols, which can cause liver toxicity in cats. Clove oil may also induce vomiting, tremors, seizures, and staggering in cats. However, cloves appear to be relatively safe for dogs. Interestingly, clove powder or oil can cause numbness and is sometimes used as a natural pain reliever for mouth pain in humans.
Ginger is generally safe for dogs and cats. However, as with all ingredients, it’s important to avoid feeding large amounts or giving pieces of fresh ginger to your pet.
So, what should you do if your pet accidentally consumes something flavored with pumpkin spice? While we don’t recommend intentionally feeding your pet pumpkin spice cookies or other treats, a small bite is unlikely to cause harm. Just be cautious with essential oils or extracts, especially around cats. If you’re concerned, it’s always best to consult with your veterinarian.
Enjoy the flavors and scents of fall safely with your pets! To learn more about pet safety, visit Katten TrimSalon.
This blog is brought to you by Katten TrimSalon, providing expert pet grooming services in Red Lion, York, and the surrounding communities.
Source: Pet Poison Helpline