Most of the things you eat on a daily basis are perfectly safe for your dog to eat, and many others can be used in small amounts as treats or training rewards. However, there are several foods that you should never give your pet, including chocolate, caffeine and alcohol, grapes and raisins, onions, garlic and xylitol (a sweetener often found in gum and candy). You should also be careful with some meats like onion powder or raw bones that may contain salmonella or other bacteria dangerous to your dog’s health.
If you love your dog, please don’t give them chocolate. This is one of the most toxic foods for dogs. Chocolate contains theobromine, a chemical that can cause a dog’s heart to beat irregularly and lead to seizures, coma or death. The darker the chocolate, the more dangerous it is for dogs. And any type of chocolate poses a risk for dogs—even milk chocolate and white chocolate with cocoa butter.
Onions can be very toxic to dogs, as they have a compound in them called N-propyl disulfide which is not present in any other food. This compound can lead to hemolytic anemia and Heinz body formation. In addition, onions are low on the glycemic index so they may cause dog’s blood sugar levels to drop if they eat too much of them, which could result in hypoglycemia.
3) Grapes and Raisins
It’s important to avoid giving your dog grapes and raisins as these foods are very toxic. Grapes and raisins contain a toxin that can lead to kidney failure in dogs, so they should never be given to them. The toxin is found in the seeds, skin, leaves and stems of the plant. The symptoms of grape toxicity can occur from just one serving of grapes or raisins (which are generally much smaller than one serving). Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea and lethargy. If you think your dog has consumed any amount of grapes or raisins then it is best to take him or her immediately to a vet for treatment.
4) Xylitol (artificial sweetener)
Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that is found in many sugar-free items including gum, baked goods and toothpaste. If ingested by dogs, it can cause low blood sugar levels, liver failure and even death. As little as 0.1 grams of xylitol per pound of body weight can be toxic to some dogs so keep it out of reach.
5) Raw Eggs
Eggs are bad for dogs because they can cause food borne illnesses such as salmonella. Salmonella is a bacteria that can live in the intestines of infected animals and humans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The bacteria can be found on raw foods, including eggs, and even in some types of unpasteurized milk. In rare cases, it may cause an infection elsewhere in your dog’s body.
6) Alcoholic Drinks
No matter how you spin it, alcohol isn’t a healthy choice for your dog. Alcoholic beverages contain high levels of sugar, as well as smaller amounts of alcohol. Sugar can cause an increase in bad bacteria in the gut, while alcohol can lead to issues with coordination and even seizures. If you do plan on giving your dog a treat containing alcohol, be sure to keep their portion very small – too much could lead to serious health problems.
Garlic is toxic to dogs and can cause damage to a dog’s red blood cells, which are the cells that carry oxygen throughout the body. Garlic poisoning can be fatal if left untreated. Symptoms of garlic poisoning include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, excessive thirst and urination, pale gums and anemia. If you suspect your dog has eaten garlic or any other toxic food item, call your veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline immediately at (800) 213-6680.
8) Coffee and Caffeine
Coffee and caffeine are bad for dogs, as they can cause heart problems, seizures and even death. This includes decaffeinated coffee and tea, which still contain a small amount of caffeine that’s enough to hurt your pet. In fact, chocolate is bad for dogs too. And while it doesn’t seem like these two things have much in common, cocoa beans are part of the same family as coffee beans. So if you love your dog (or your pup), please don’t give them coffee or chocolate!
9) Fruit Seeds and Pits
It’s not just grapes, apples and peaches that can cause problems for your dog. In fact, many types of fruit seeds and pits can be toxic to dogs. These include apricot, cherry, peach and pear pits; apple seeds; persimmon; as well as other fruits such as avocado, kiwi, pineapple and mango. Seeds from the following plants should also be avoided: castor bean plant (ricin), larkspur (delphinium), colchicum autumnale (colchicum autumnale), Datura stramonium (jimson weed)
10) Fatty Trimmings From The Kitchen
These can be found in almost any kitchen, but they should not be given to your dog. Trimmings from the kitchen are dangerous because they are often high in fat, which is bad for dogs. This can lead to obesity and other related health problems. Trimmings also often contain onion and garlic, which can cause anemia in dogs.