Veterinarian - San Diego
1540 Morena Boulevard
San Diego, CA 92110



By Heather Beeson of Morena Pet Hospital
April 25, 2013
Category: Pet Safety
Tags: Untagged


We recently had a visit from a sweet and bubbly 10 month old Pug. The owner suspected that this little fellow possibly ingested an unknown number of Advil tablets over the weekend. Since then he had been vomiting, but otherwise was still eating, drinking, and active. The owners were unsure if they should be concerned since he seemed to feel ok. Dr. Steib performed an exam which was normal besides evidence of mild dehydration. She discussed the potential serious side effects of Advil ingestion in dogs which include: kidney failure, liver failure, irritation of the stomach and intestines sometimes leading to severe bleeding and even death.

After this discussion the owners allowed the doctor to run some routine bloodwork and urine tests to assess the dog’s kidney and liver status as well as looking for signs of bleeding. Surprisingly the bloodwork and urine test showed anemia (due to blood loss) and evidence of kidney failure.

The owners were shocked at the news. Their new puppy was suddenly in a life threatening situation even though he was eating, drinking and wagging his tail. They agreed to hospitalize the little guy and allow the doctor to treat his condition aggressively with IV fluids and medications to help stop the vomiting and blood loss, in hopes of reversing the damage to his kidneys.  Dr. Steib did have to give a guarded prognosis due to the serious state his kidneys were in.  After 5 days of aggressive care from Morena Pet Hospital and his dedicated owners, his bloodwork and urine tests showed returned function of his kidneys!! He was finally allowed to go home to his family who will gradually taper him off of his medications and recheck his blood and urine tests to ensure they are stable. He was a lucky dog to recover as well as he did. Many pets suffer residual kidney damage or even death from similar situations.

Only a few weeks after the Pug visited us, a handsome 1 year old Boxer came in after ingesting a granola bar with raisins in it. These astute owners knew that raisins could potentially cause kidney failure in their dog so they brought him to a local overnight emergency hospital that checked his blood and urine for signs of kidney damage. Luckily everything looked normal but the doctor still suggested hospitalization for IV fluids and monitoring. The owners agreed and left the dog at the emergency hospital overnight. The following morning they called the doctor at Morena Pet Hospital to discuss what happened with their dog. They were considering taking the dog home because the blood and urine tests were normal and the dog was not sick at all. The doctor at Morena Pet Hospital explained that toxicity from raisin ingestion is very unpredictable and the current recommendations by veterinary toxicologists are to continue IV fluids and monitoring of kidney tests up to 3 days after the ingestion occurred to ensure no damage to the kidneys has occurred. Of course the owners wanted to ensure that their young dog would have the best chances for a full recovery and agreed to transfer their dog to Morena Pet Hospital for continued treatment and care. The following day a recheck of the blood and urine in fact showed a mild change in his kidney tests. Luckily the owners were committed to continued treatment and care.

The following day the lucky dog was allowed to return home where the owners would continue the medications needed. A week later a recheck of his kidney test showed 100% return to normal function!

Most cat owners don’t know it, but lilies are lethally toxic to cats!  Unfortunately, one of our patients had this in common—animals that have consumed a leaf of a lily flower arrangement. To bring attention to the seriousness of this plant, here is more information about this beautiful, but very toxic flower (a must-read for all pet owners).  Please refer to our previous blog article about lily poisoning in cats:

In summary, if you suspect your pet has been exposed to or ingested a toxin (poisonous substance), be sure to call your veterinarian immediately!  Time can be of the essence when treating potential organ failure.  Refer to the following links/pages for a list of potential toxins:

ASPCA Toxic and Non-Toxic Plant List:

Pet Poison Helpline:


If you are not sure if an item/substance your pet ingested is toxic, call us at (619) 275-0888.  For additional information, you may contact the National Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435.  This is a 24-hour service provided by the ASPCA with doctors available around the clock.  There is a consultation fee for this phone call.  It is vital to include all ingredients your pet has ingested.