Did you know macadamia nuts can cause paralysis in dogs? As few as 5 nuts can cause paralysis in a 20kg dog. These nuts are commonly on the menu at Christmas time, and many people are unaware that they are potentially toxic to dogs. They retain their toxicity even when cooked, and can be particularly tempting for dogs when coated in chocolate.
Macadamia nut toxicity is not well studied, but we do know that these relatively low numbers of nuts can cause the following:
- weakness and ataxia in hind limbs, spreading to forelimbs
- reduced responsiveness
- collapse, paralysis
- swollen, painful joints
- occasionally vomiting
- occasionally hyperthermia
While these symptoms are generally reversible, severely affected dogs, particularly those that are paralysed, will need hospitalisation and supportive care.
Please be mindful of this lesser known toxic food, and remember to keep them out of your pet’s way.