11 Common Toxic Foods for Dogs

Dogs love to eat. Even the biggest of dog lovers will still admit that canines can be like scavengers. And we love them for that! However, there are toxic foods for dogs that you should never allow your four-legged friend to eat.

There are some toxic foods for dogs that you never would’ve guessed could harm their health. A lot of food that is perfectly fine for humans can cause harm to your dog.

There is hardly any way that we could list them all, so be sure to do your research. However, here are some of the most common culprits behind your dog’s diarrhea and similar stomach problems.

Is Human Food Bad for Dogs?

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We’d always suggest you feed your dog with foods that are specialized for canines. However, most human food is perfectly fine for your pet to eat.

However, because canines have a different digestive system, there are toxic foods for dogs that you wouldn’t suspect in. This is why you should always do your homework and be sure that your lunch is fine for your dog. Also, a lot of human foods can harm your dog after just a few bites.

If you catch your dog munching on something from this list, don’t count his bites. Stop him immediately and closely monitor his behavior. Just one taste of some of these foods can cause irreversible damage.

So, what are some toxic foods for dogs that humans tend to eat on an everyday basis?

1. Alcohol

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Let’s face it. Most people wondered whether or not dogs can get drunk.

Even though the answer is ‘Yes’, dogs should, under no circumstances, drink alcoholic beverages. Canine’s organs can’t process alcohol the same way we can.

Instead, alcohol can cause, in milder cases, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, and a decrease in coordination. However, in heavier cases, alcohol can cause breathing difficulties, coma, and even death.

This is why it’s important to always keep alcoholic drinks away from your pet. If you suspect your dog has taken just a sip of your beer, contact your vet immediately.

2. Chocolate

Everyone loves chocolate. Even your dogs will look at you while drooling if you take anything sweet from the fridge. However, human chocolate is poisonous for dogs – and this is not only because of sugar.

Chocolate contains theobromine, a substance similar to caffeine, which can harm dogs. How much theobromine will chocolate have depends on the food itself.

Typically, dark chocolate is more dangerous than milk one, as it contains more cacao. Theobromine can affect the dog’s heart, guts, kidneys, and even the central nervous system.

If your dog’s eaten chocolate, monitor him for a whole day. The symptoms of theobromine poisoning usually occur four to 24 hours after consumption.

Some of the most common signs include vomiting, diarrhea, and hyperactivity. Sometimes, dogs can even get seizures that can have fatal results.

3. Caffeine

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Similarly to chocolate, caffeine also contains methylxanthines. If your pets consume anything with methylxanthines, they can get symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, panting, excessive urination, and thirst.

Methylxanthines can also cause some more serious conditions, such as tremors, abnormal heart rhythm, and even seizures. Sometimes, they can even cause death. As to how much coffee your dog can have – a lick or two probably won’t harm him. However, if your gluttony dog swallows a whole lot of coffee beans or black tea, you’re in for a disaster.

4. Nuts

 

Eating most types of nuts isn’t the worst thing your dog can do. However, nuts contain high amounts of substances that your dog really shouldn’t eat, such as fats and oils.

Eating just a few nuts most likely won’t harm your canine friend. However, if he eats them regularly, he might even develop pancreatitis.

The only exception to this is macadamia nuts. Your dog should under no condition eat macadamia nuts.

They can cause hyperthermia and tremor, amongst more common symptoms such as diarrhea and vomiting. A dog who ate macadamia nuts will usually show signs of poisoning in the first 12 hours of ingestion.

5. Salt and Spicy Food

Most of us have seen comedy skits of dogs farting after eating spicy food. However, is spicy food bad for dogs? Salt and most other spices can dehydrate a dog.

They cause excessive urination and thirst, which is never good. In the worst case, they can even cause sodium ion poisoning.

The symptoms of poisoning include diarrhea, vomiting, tremors, high or low body temperature, and even seizures. Yes, your dog can die from eating food that is too spicy. The same goes for any food that is rich in salts, such as potato chips or popcorns.

6. Most Fruits

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Fruits are extremely healthy for humans, as they contain high amounts of vitamins. However, there are a lot of toxic fruits for dogs.

In fact, we wouldn’t recommend you giving any sorts of fruits to your canine friend.

For example, grapes and raisins are bad for your dog’s kidneys. Citrus plants are rich in citric acid that can cause damage to the central nervous system.

Citric acid is present in almost every part of the citrus plant, including even leaves, seeds, and stems. Small amounts aren’t likely to cause any harm, but it’s better not to risk it.

Also, avocado is poisonous to most pets, including dogs. Although avocado isn’t likely to cause any serious harm to your dog, it’s best to avoid it completely. It can cause cardiovascular damage in a lot of animals.

7. Garlic, Onions, and Chives

These smelly vegetables and herbs can damage your dog’s stomach and cause irritation to its guts. This can even lead to conditions such as anemia.

The worst of the three are onions, as they contain most toxic substances. Also, signs of onion poisoning can occur even a few days after your dog has ingested it.

Onion in any form is poisonous for dogs, so it doesn’t matter if he ate raw, dehydrated or cooked onions. Also, your four-legged companion can be poisoned from eating food that has onions in traces.

A few examples of this are Chinese foods and pizza. Some people like to feed their puppies with commercial baby food, without realizing that it contains onion. If you have puppies, always feed them with vet-approved foods!

8. Moldy Foods

When you say ‘mold’, you think about disgusting, old food that became spoiled. However, many moldy meals are among toxic foods for dogs that you eat every day.

One of them is white bread. In fact, most foods that contain yeast dough are bad for your pets. Yeast dough can rise inside a dog’s digestive system which can cause gasses and painful cramps.

However, this can also lead to twisting of the stomach and guts, which is a potentially deadly condition. Not only that, but sometimes yeast can produce ethanol, which can further lead to alcohol poisoning.

9. Milk and Dairy

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Unlike most humans, dogs can’t digest lactose as they don’t have enough lactase in their guts. This most likely won’t cause your dog any serious harm and he will be left with just diarrhea and vomiting.

Still, why would you cause harm to your pet without any reason? Humans also hate eating food they can’t digest properly. Keep your dog safe and pain-free by hiding any dairy product from him.

10. Xylitol


Xylitol is an artificial sweetener that is usually used as a substitute to sugar. It can be found in sugar-free gums and most diabetic foods.

It is harmless for humans, however, in most animals, it can cause insulin release. As a result, this can lead to hypoglycemia, dangerously lowered sugar levels.

Dogs are extremely sensitive to this and eating even a small amount of food containing xylitol will poison them. This is additionally dangerous as some small sweets such as candy contain very high amounts of xylitol.

Some symptoms of xylitol poisoning include vomiting, lethargy, and clumsiness, but it can also cause seizures and death. Xylitol can also cause fatal liver disease as well as blood-clotting disorders.

11. Cooked Bones

Your dogs will love chewing on raw bones, which are perfectly healthy for him. Just ensure that you are monitoring him, so he doesn’t swallow a sharp piece.

However, cooked bones should be avoided. Not only are they more likely to splinter, but large quantities can cause constipation. This can further lead to causing gut perforation, which can have fatal results.

What to Do if My Pet Has Eaten Any of Toxic Foods for Dogs?

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In this article, we have tried to let you know which food is toxic in which amounts. Most of these foods can cause harm even when ingested in the smallest amounts.

It is best to call your vet if you know that your dog’s eaten anything from this list. Toxic foods for dogs can cause life long issues for your pet.

Be sure to monitor him for at least 24 hours, to make sure that there aren’t any signs of food poisoning. Contact your vet immediately if you notice any of the dangerous symptoms.

Eating the wrong food can seriously damage your dog’s health, or even kill him.