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What is Potato (Green) Poisoning?

Although potatoes are a healthy vegetable for humans, it is best not to feed any part of a raw potato or potato skins to your dog because of the toxins they contain. The potato, as well as other vegetables, such as tomatoes and eggplant, produces solanine as a natural defense to deter insects. Even in small amounts, your dog can have symptoms similar to food poisoning due to the solanine and chaconine. Solanine is a cholinesterase inhibitor that can prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitter. This causes reduced function of the nervous system and the body’s organs by building up in the tissues, especially the liver. Solanine has also been found in other major organs such as the brain, lungs, heart, and kidneys. These toxins can make humans sick as well, but it would take a lot more potatoes than we would eat to cause even mild symptoms. However, it is best not to eat potatoes that have green skin or are growing sprouts whether they are cooked or not, and definitely never feed them to your dog.

Green potato poisoning in dogs occurs when a dog consumes too much solanine, which is a glycoalkaloid naturally produced in green or raw potatoes, potato skins, and the foliage from the potato plant. Solanine poisoning can cause heart problems, difficulty breathing, and gastrointestinal upset. The raw potato and skins also contain chaconine, which is toxic and can cause irritation to the digestive tract, nervous system symptoms (tremors), and kidney function disorders. If you think your dog has eaten green potatoes, skins, or foliage, you should call your veterinarian or visit your local animal hospital even if there are no symptoms.

Potato (Green) Poisoning Average Cost

From 65 quotes ranging from $200 - $300

Average Cost

$250

Symptoms of Potato (Green) Poisoning in Dogs

Symptoms may vary depending on how much solanine and chaconine was in the potatoes or potato skins your dog ate, and the size and health of your dog. Most often, the symptoms will be mild, unless your dog is very small, ill, or if a great amount of potatoes have been consumed in a short amount of time. The most common symptoms reported are:

  • Bleeding
  • Burning of the throat
  • Cardiac dysrhythmia
  • Death
  • Delirium
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Dilated pupils
  • Dizziness
  • Excess drooling
  • Fever
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms, such as diarrhea, abdominal pain, and nausea
  • Headache
  • Heart problems
  • Jaundice
  • Loss of sensation
  • Low body temperature (hypothermia)
  • Numbness and burning sensation of the tongue, mouth, and lips
  • Paralysis
  • Progressive paralysis
  • Seizures
  • Shock
  • Slow pulse
  • Slowed breathing
  • Swelling of tongue or lips
  • Trembling
  • Vision changes
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
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Causes of Potato (Green) Poisoning in Dogs

Solanine symptoms are caused by the interruption of the chemical acetylcholine, which is important in transmitting nerve impulses. This chemical is also reported to cause cell membrane damage, which can cause irritation of the nervous system and intestinal tract. The chemical is found in:

  • Green potatoes
  • Potato foliage
  • Raw potato skins
  • Sprouts grown on potatoes
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Diagnosis of Potato (Green) Poisoning in Dogs

Your veterinarian will need to know what your dog ate, how much, and how long ago it happened. You should also let the veterinarian know what symptoms you have seen, your dog’s medical history, and any illnesses or injuries. A comprehensive physical examination will be done, which will include temperature, weight, height, pulse, reflexes, blood pressure and breathing rate.

They will also need to complete some tests, such as complete blood count, chemical panel, blood gas, glucose level, urinalysis, kidney and liver function tests, and a chest x-ray. In addition, an electrocardiogram (ECG) may be done to monitor your dog’s heart rate if needed.

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Treatment of Potato (Green) Poisoning in Dogs

The treatment for your dog might include giving apomorphine to inducing vomiting and activated charcoal to absorb any toxin that may be left in the stomach. The veterinarian will provide IV fluids and oxygen therapy. If they suspect there is still toxin in your dog’s system, he may perform a gastric lavage. Medication, such as a physostigmine or pilocarpine might be administered to help boost your dog’s nervous system, and gastrointestinal protectants and laxatives may be used as well.

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Recovery of Potato (Green) Poisoning in Dogs

How well your dog recovers depends on the amount of solanine ingested and how quickly treatment is given. As with any illness, providing a quiet place to rest when your pet returns home is key to recovery. Be certain to contact your veterinarian if you have questions or concerns. To prevent this from happening again, do not let your dog eat raw potatoes, potato skins, or foliage and make sure he cannot get into the trash where potato peels may be.

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Potato (Green) Poisoning Average Cost

From 65 quotes ranging from $200 - $300

Average Cost

$250

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Potato (Green) Poisoning Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

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dog-breed-icon

German Shorthaired Pointer

dog-age-icon

Eleven Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

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15 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Moaning And Gas

My mom gave him some cooked potato skin from a baked potato yesterday. Today he has been moaning and a bbn it gassy, but lately he is always a little gassy. It may of had some butter on parts

Sept. 29, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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15 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. If your dog is moaning and uncomfortable, he may need to be seen by a veterinarian. If he is doing well otherwise, you can try a 24-hour fast where he does not eat any food but can have water, and see if that settles his stomach. If it does not end he is still uncomfortable, then it would be best to have him seen by a veterinarian right away. I hope that he is okay.

Oct. 1, 2020

Was this experience helpful?

dog-name-icon

dog-breed-icon

German Shorthaired Pointer

dog-age-icon

Eleven Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

thumbs-up-icon

5 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Moaning And Gas

My mother fed our GSP some potato skin the other night. It was cooked, but it may have had some butter on it. He is like moaning in pain and has some slight gas, but here lately he always has a bit of gas. I'm worried.

Sept. 29, 2020

Owner

answer-icon

Dr. Michele K. DVM

recommendation-ribbon

5 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. If you think that your dog is moaning and is painful, he may need to see a veterinarian. One thing you can try is to fast him for twenty-four hours, water is okay but no food, and see if that helps settle his stomach. If it does not, and he continues to have problems, then seeing a veterinarian is the best thing to do for him. I hope that all goes well for him and he feels better soon.

Oct. 1, 2020

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Potato (Green) Poisoning Average Cost

From 65 quotes ranging from $200 - $300

Average Cost

$250

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