Caffeine, besides having a slight stimulating effect on the peristalsis in the intestine, is useful because it stimulates the general circulation by accelerating the heart, increasing its force and raising the blood pressure. It affects the heart muscle directly. Overdoses cause such rapid heartbeat that blood pressure drops.
- it increases the rapidity and depth of respiration;
- it stimulates the nervous system;
- it increases muscular strength and power;
- it stimulates the production of urine by heightening the activity of the kidneys without irritating them, thus it is a diuretic.
Since caffeine is an effective, if mild stimulant, many dogs with degree of cardiac insufficiency benefit from it. One level teaspoon of instant coffee contains about one grain of caffeine, which is helpful for a twenty-pound dog. It must be given frequently since the effectiveness lasts only a half hour or so. Very little coffee is required as a good size dose for a dog. The error most people make is in giving their pets too much. In proportion to the human dose, when used as a stimulant, caffeine enough for a Cocker weighing twenty-five pounds is only one third to one half a cup, whereas a cup is enough for a great Great Dane. Yet an owner will often mistakenly give two cups to a small dog if the dog is hungry for it.
As a stimulant to counteract a narcotic or barbiturate poisoning, fairly large amounts of coffee should be given, but great care is necessary to prevent some from running into the lungs of the anesthetized dog. If coffee is not handy, strong tea is an excellent substitute. A cup of tea contains almost as much caffeine as a cup of coffee. Cocoa contains thorniness, which action is similar to that of caffeine. Ask your veterinarian before administering medications for potentially serious problems.
Ammonia in the containers of aromatic spirits to sniff is often given to dogs and other pets, or it is given orally as a stimulant. A dog the size sofa Cocker can stand one half a cubic centimeter in water, but very often enlarge doses are given mistakenly. Ammonia has also been given to stimulate kidney action and to help an dog to raise phlegm from the trachea, but for these purposes it is inferior to other drugs that do this.
The following are some signs of caffeine dogs:
- The dog would always be in an excited state.
- The breathing rate of the dog would also increase considerably.
- Not only the caffeine effect would be increased respiratory rate but also would characterize fast heart rate.
- The dog would also feel tremors in the muscles
- The dog may suffer from occasional fits as well.
- In severe cases the dog might bleed heavily.
- If taken to a veterinary surgeon he or she would find the dog to be suffering from arrhythmias or abnormal breathing of heart and generalized nature of congestion.
Caffeine is present in food items like coffee, tea, cocoa, chocolate and certain soft drinks. The substance is also present in measured quantities in cold treatments, lucozade, pain killers, in some stimulant tablets and drinks as a well.