As a longtime dog breeder and pet owner, I have been asked a lot of questions regarding pet care. Many of those questions stem from pet tales and myths that have been perpetuated over the years but have little or no proof behind them. The tales sound legit, so they are believed to be factual and keep being passed down through the generations. But how many of those common pet tales are the truth and how many are folklore?
Chocolate Will Kill Dogs
The possibility is there. It’s also possible that dry kibble, baby carrots and any other food will kill dogs under certain circumstances, but it’s highly unlikely.
Chocolate is not the best thing for a dog to eat, but the sweet treat won’t kill him unless he ingests a large quantity of dark chocolate or baker’s chocolate, both of which contain the highest concentration of theobromine, a caffeine like substance that acts as a strong stimulant. If you toss your dog an M&M every now again, it won’t hurt him and if he happens to get into the bag of M&M chocolates when you’re not looking, the sweet treat will come out both ends until it’s out of his system and he will be none-the-worse for wear.
As a side note, most cats don’t like chocolate and avoid it.
Dry Nose Means Fever
A dog or cat’s nose is normally wet, but a dry nose doesn’t mean your pet has a fever. A rectal thermometer reading is only way to discern if a fever is present (normal body temp for a dog or cat is 100F- 102F). A dry nose does mean something is not quite right and the pet should be monitored for other signs of distress.
Use a Flea Collar
Putting a flea collar on your pet is not the best way to kill fleas and the collar poses a choking hazard. A harmless and more effective way to kill and repel fleas is to add a mix of brewer’s yeast and garlic powder (found at health food stores) to your pet’s food each day.
Cats Always Land on Feet
A cat’s spine is more flexible than ours and they do have the ability to turn themselves in mid-air during a fall, but they don’t always have the time to get into the right body position land on their feet.
Bones Makes Good Dog Treats
No, no and no. Dogs love to chew on bones, but those bones (especially chicken bones) splinter while being chewed and your dog can swallow a small shard of bone that can lodge in his throat or windpipe. There are a variety of healthy treat available for dogs and cats, so never give them a bone.
The Hershey Company