Are Conkers Poisonous To Dogs?

conkerConkers are certainly a hazard to dogs, even the spikey shell can cause serious, painful injury and of course they can be a choking hazard. The cases as well as the actual conkers can be a risk by causing an intestinal blockage,  this can require surgical removal.

Serious cases of poisoning to dogs do happen but are rare.

The actual poison is aesculin and is found throughout the horse chestnut tree, including leaves.

In reality a dog would need to ingest quite a few conkers for toxicity to occur.

If you know your dog has been in contact with conkers or is showing the following signs; salivation, vomiting which may contain blood and diarrhoea, There may also be abdominal pain which could be presented by increased thirst and a reduced appetite. Also look out for restlessness and muscle tremors, the dog may be restless

It can take from 1 to 6 hours after ingestion for clinical signs and then can be seen for up to 2 days afterwards.

What to do if you think your dog has suffered from conker poisoning.

Clearly you need to get your dog to the vet, If you can do this within two hours of ingestion the vet may be able to administer vomit inducing medication and they may also perform gastric lavage to rince out the stomach to ensure as much of the poison is removed from your dog’s system as possible.

There is no known antidote.

Alternatives may include intravenous fluids.