View Full Version : Help me do a simple math problem.

StephanieFox

02-13-2015, 09:05 PM

I have math anxiety and although this is a simple problem, the answer I keep coming up with seems wrong. Can anyone help. It's for a piece on foods bad for dogs.

Here's the statement: Garlic is the most toxic of the two. A toxic dose of raw garlic is around 1 gram for each pound a dog weighs. Onions are less concentrated, with a toxic dose of 1 gram per 5 pounds of dog.

So, how many ounces of each can a dog ingest? I came up with .7 oz of garlic for a 20 lb. dog, but that can't be right.

Thank you so much for figuring this out for me. Math isn't taught in journalism school for good reason.

Marlys

02-13-2015, 09:11 PM

I have math anxiety and although this is a simple problem, the answer I keep coming up with seems wrong. Can anyone help. It's for a piece on foods bad for dogs.

Here's the statement: Garlic is the most toxic of the two. A toxic dose of raw garlic is around 1 gram for each pound a dog weighs. Onions are less concentrated, with a toxic dose of 1 gram per 5 pounds of dog.

So, how many ounces of each can a dog ingest? I came up with .7 oz of garlic for a 20 lb. dog, but that can't be right.

Thank you so much for figuring this out for me. Math isn't taught in journalism school for good reason.

No, you're right. 1 gram per pound, 20 pounds, so 20 grams. There are 28 grams in an ounce, so 20 out of 28 = .714 ounce, which rounds to .7 ounce.

What doesn't look right is that onions are said to be LESS toxic, but it takes a smaller amount to kill a dog: one gram per five pounds, or only 4 grams to kill that same 20-pound dog. That would be only .14 oz.

StephanieFox

02-13-2015, 09:25 PM

Here's what I got off a vet website. So, for a 20 lb dog, how much of each, in oz., would be a problem? Thanks!

In general, garlic can be more concentrated than an onion,” says Dr. Justine Lee, a board-certified veterinary specialist in both emergency critical care and toxicology and the CEO and founder of VetGirl. “It’s actually considered to be about 5X as potent as an onion.”

Consider the rule of thumb when it comes to onion toxicity: Consumption of as little as 5 g/kg of onions in cats or 15 to 30 g/kg in dogs has resulted in clinically important hematologic changes. According to scientific studies, onion toxicosis is consistently noted in animals that ingest more than 0.5% of their body weight in onions at one time.*

Marlys

02-13-2015, 09:51 PM

Here's what I got off a vet website. So, for a 20 lb dog, how much of each, in oz., would be a problem? Thanks!

In general, garlic can be more concentrated than an onion, says Dr. Justine Lee, a board-certified veterinary specialist in both emergency critical care and toxicology and the CEO and founder of VetGirl. Its actually considered to be about 5X as potent as an onion.

Consider the rule of thumb when it comes to onion toxicity: Consumption of as little as 5 g/kg of onions in cats or 15 to 30 g/kg in dogs has resulted in clinically important hematologic changes. According to scientific studies, onion toxicosis is consistently noted in animals that ingest more than 0.5% of their body weight in onions at one time.*

A kilogram is about 2.2 pounds, so 6.8 grams (15 divided by 2.2) to 13.6 grams (30 divided by 2.2) per pound would be a problem. If you round to 7 and 14, then that's .25 to .5 of an ounce per pound, since an ounce = 28 grams. For a 20 pound dog, that means 5 to 10 ounces of onions would result in those hematological changes.

If you work backwards from the garlic being 5 times as potent as onion, you'll get 1 to 2 ounces of garlic being as bad. Above, you got .7 ounce of garlic--not terribly far off the lower figure, and I'm sure it does vary a bit.

So, garlic: .7 ounce to 2 ounces for a 20-lb dog

onion: 5 to 10 ounces for a 20-lb dog

The half-percent of body weight figure seems a closer match to the cats' 5g/kg, so I'd leave that out if you're just talking about dogs.

StephanieFox

02-13-2015, 10:08 PM

Thanks so much! I'll use the figures you gave. I have a very limited word count range – 795 to 815 words – so this helps me say amounts in a limited number of words.

(My eyes glazed over on your explanation you how you got your figures. Back in journalism school, I saw 10,000 x 10 worked out on the chalkboard. I could do that in my head, so compared to some writers, I'm not so math-dumb.)

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