A small amount of garlic can be toxic to pets, but why?

      Allium sativum. Allium sativum, commonly known as garlic, is a species in the onion family Alliaceae.
      Its close relatives include the onion, shallot.
The active ingredients of garlic oil are; allicin, allin, dially disulfide, thiosulphate, methyl alkyl disulfide and diallyl trisulphide.
Disulfide and thiosulphate is toxic to cats and dogs if ingested.
The ingestion of garlic cause conditions like hemolytic anemia and methemoglobinemia.
Wild and domesticated Allium species have been used for culinary and ethnomedicinal purposes since the beginning of recorded history. About 95 species of native or cultivated leeks, chives, garlic, shallots, scallions, and onions are present in North America, and more than 80 ornamental Allium species are available. Allium species and the products derived from them can be toxic to dogs and cats; however, relatively few Allium species are of important toxicological interest.  While mass consumption of garlic puts pets at high risk, your pet can also become poisoned after chronic ingestion of small amounts of garlic over a period of time.
How much garlic is toxic to pets:
Garlic is approximately 5 times more concentrated than onion, so consumption of onion as little as 5 g/kg in cats and 15-30, g/kg in dogs is harmful clinically for red blood cells damage.
Since garlic is more concentrated than an onion, and even smaller ingested amount could lead to toxicosis—as little as one clove of garlic can lead to toxicity in cats and small dogs.
Note that a pet weight, breed, and prior health history can vary the toxicity level of ingested garlic.
Symptoms of garlic toxicity:
Symptoms of this condition can include:
Vomiting and diarrhea
Pale gums
Increase heart rate
Some pets may show abdominal discomfort, abdominal pain, and discolored urine.
Differential diagnosis:
Differential diagnoses include another common toxicosis: brassicaceous vegetables, propylene glycol, acetaminophen, benzocaine, vitamin K3, dl-methionine, naphthalene, zinc, and copper. Common feline disorders associated with Heinz body formation include diabetes mellitus, particularly if ketoacidosis is present; hepatic lipidosis; hyperthyroidism; and lymphoma and other neoplasms.
By physical examination
Lab tests
Medical history
An abdominal radiograph (x-ray), ultrasound and CT scan may also be used to check a dog’s liver and spleen.
No specific antidote is available for Allium species toxicosis. Treatment involves gastrointestinal decontamination and removing the Allium species source, treating the anemia, and providing general supportive care. Inducing emesis can be valuable in asymptomatic dogs and cats provided no complicating factors are present and ingestion was within the last one or two hours.
Antioxidants, such as sodium ascorbate, vitamin E, and N-acetyl cysteine have minimal overt protective effects in onion powder toxicosis in cats. Diets low in potential oxidants are recommended; semi-moist foods that contain propylene glycol should be avoided, particularly in cats.
Prognosis of toxicity:
A patient’s prognosis depends on the species of the plant involved, the severity of the anemia, and the institution of supportive care. In companion animals, avoiding exposure is the best preventive strategy. Feeding pets onions or other Allium species or their derivatives should be stopped.


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