I was chatting with a Brewer buddy of mine about his dog and mentioned that hops can kill dogs if they ingest them. He wasn’t aware of this, so I was inspired to spread the word. Hopefully we can protect hungry canines from some pain or worse.
When dogs eat hops the symptoms will likely be hyperthermia, increased and heavy breathing, and rapid heart rates. I have read that dogs generally ignore hops that are growing, but you might want to fence them so your dog can’t get at them. Dogs like to eat hops when they’ve been coated in sweet delicious wort. If you see your dog eat hops, spent hops or spent grains mixed with hops then don’t wait for signs, just take your pet to the vet. The vet will induce vomiting, so if you are unable to get to a vet try to make your dog spit up the hops somehow. A Louis CK joke leads me to believe that making them drink hydrogen peroxide does the trick. It seems that some breeds are more susceptible to this, notably greyhounds, but I wouldn’t rely on a dog as being immune. There is more to the treatment than just getting your dog to heave, as discussed in the first link below, so a professional vet is always your best bet.
While I’m all for composting, if you have a dog or if dogs might gain access to your compost pile then I think it is best that you only put spent grains in and dispose of your kettle waste elsewhere.