One of our team recently visited Formby Beach with her three dogs and was made aware of the potential dangers of palm oil washing up on our shorelines.
Palm oil is a type of vegetable fat derived from palms that is offloaded offshore where it makes its way to our coast lines and beaches. It is fatty and waxy in appearance and is often found in white or yellowish pebbles or blocks along the shore. Palm oil is usually foul smelling and very attractive to our canine companions and whilst it isn’t actually toxic to dogs, it is often mixed with harmful bacteria and toxic substances such as diesel from ships.
Common symptoms following ingestion include vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy, dehydration and in some cases pancreatitis – a potentially life threatening condition. Washed up palm oil can also cause blockages within the gut due to its semi solid state. This is classed as a veterinary emergency and could lead to surgical intervention.
If you’re worried your dog has eaten palm oil, call your vet immediately and bring your dog straight to the practice. Depending on the severity of symptoms, age and condition of your pet, it is possible your animal will need to be hospitalised for blood testing, intravenous fluid therapy and supportive treatment.
If you’re planning to have some fun on the beach with your dogs, please be extra vigilant and check for the latest updates in the area you plan on visiting.
For more information or advice, call one of our branches and speak to the team.