Botanically known as Allium schoenoprasum, chives are flowering plants that belong to the family Amaryllidaceae. These perennial plants are related to garlic, onions, leeks, scallions, and shallots.
Some of their common uses are in culinary, where its flavorful leaves are used in various cooking while fresh or after they have dried. Also, its flowers are used to make salads or for cooking before they mature or open up.
Besides the use in culinary, chives are part of ornamental plants cultivated in gardens for landscaping purposes.
Finally, while many parts of the world have naturalized it, you will find chives commonly growing in nature in Asia, North America, and Europe.
Are chives bad for dogs?
Yes. Chives are bad for dogs. While a small amount may not result in any symptoms, an amount of about 0.5% of their body weight or more will cause poisoning or toxicity.
Why are they toxic? It is because they have n-propyl disulfide. This organosulfoxide causes oxidative red blood cell damage increases the chances of them rapturing.
Whether in powder form, fresh, raw, cooked, or uncooked, these herbs will cause poisoning, and this applies to all other genus Allium members.
To make matters worse, some of the compounds that chives have cause red blood cell dilation and relaxation of heart muscles leading to low blood pressure and reduced efficiency for these pets to pump blood.
Finally, some pooch breeds are susceptible to poisoning. For instance, the Akita, Shiba Inu Japanese dog breeds are more vulnerable to chives poisoning.
Signs and symptoms of toxicity
Symptoms may take a few days before they appear. Commonly noted ones include diarrhea, drooling, abdominal pain, anorexia, and an irritated mouth.
Additionally, “the affected animals develop anemia, and show symptoms such as weakness, rapid breathing, high heart rate, pale color in mucous membranes and reddish or brown urine,” notes Live Science.
Your vet will consider the patient history, conduct urinalysis, complete blood count, a biochemistry profile, and so on.
A confirmation of Heinz body hemolytic anemia is more conclusive, and it will help rule out other possible cause of poisoning to these pets.
If still present in their stomach, your vet will induce vomiting. Also, activated charcoal may help decontaminate the GI tract.
In severe cases, IV fluids, medicines to reduce stomach discomfort or even blood transfusion where necessary.
Do not give your dog any food that has chives, garlic, leeks, onions, shallots, and so on. Also, limit their access both to stored spices or if you grow them in your garden.