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Can dogs and cats eat gingerbread?

There are many delicious treats during Christmas that tempt both our dogs and cats. But what really happens if our animals happen to ingest one or more gingerbread cookies? Are gingerbread cookies toxic to dogs or cats? Read what our vet says here!

This article was written by a FirstVet vet

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Question:

Can dogs and cats eat gingerbread, or is it dangerous?

Gingerbread and dogs

Gingerbread is not a great treat for dogs, but occasional crumbs do not pose a danger, even for a small puppy. If a dog eats several gingerbread cookies, or gingerbread dough, there is a risk of a stomach upset, such as diarrhoea, vomiting or bloating.

Ingestion of large amounts of bicarbonate, or repeated ingestion of spices such as cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg can also be toxic. If inhaled, these powdered spices can cause choking and coughing, breathing difficulties and asthma-like signs. Ingestion of large amounts of nutmeg may cause hallucinations, disorientation, increased heart rate, high blood pressure, dry mouth, abdominal pain and seizures. These signs can last for 48 hours.

Gingerbread and cats

Cats are often less voracious than dogs, but if they were to taste gingerbread, it is highly unlikely for it to be dangerous for them either.

When to contact a vet?

  • If you are worried about your pet, you should always contact a vet
  • At FirstVet, you can always get help with an initial assessment, treatment, and if necessary, referral to your local vet clinic

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