What Foods Dogs Can’t Eat

  Summary: In this blog, we learn all about what foods dogs can’t eat. We’ll learn about five unusual foods in our kitchens that are toxic, poisonous, and dangerous for dogs to consume…   It’s hard to avoid giving your dog your food, especially when they give you those cute, infamous puppy eyes! But, some […]

Oct 04, 2023·4 min read


Summary: In this blog, we learn all about what foods dogs can’t eat. We’ll learn about five unusual foods in our kitchens that are toxic, poisonous, and dangerous for dogs to consume…


It’s hard to avoid giving your dog your food, especially when they give you those cute, infamous puppy eyes! But, some snacks that we humans can enjoy without a worry can be very toxic and poisonous to dogs, so it’s worth knowing the major ones to avoid letting near your doggo!

So, what food can dogs not eat? If you think your dog has had any one of these foods, we recommend contacting your vet.


Chocolate, in the same way that caffeine does, has a stimulating ingredient called Theobromine, which is toxic for dogs to consume. It’s found in all chocolate: milk, white and dark chocolate, with the highest dosage being in dark.

After digesting, the effects of chocolate can show from 4 to 24 hours in your dog, and can have detrimental effects on the nervous system, kidneys, heart, and gut. The symptoms to look for include diarrhea, vomiting, restlessness, abnormal heart rate, frequent urination, and seizures.

If you notice your dog showing any of these symptoms after they have eaten chocolate, you need to take action immediately.

Grapes, Sultanas & Raisins

Yes, these are foods dogs can’t eat. Grapes and raisins are known to have detrimental effects on your dog’s kidneys, even causing kidney failure. This includes foods like mince pies, fruit cake, and hot cross buns. Unfortunately, there’s no clear link between the size of your pup and the amount eaten when determining the seriousness of grape poisoning in doggos. This means it’s best to keep them out of the reach of your dog completely.

If you’re concerned your dog has consumed grapes, sultanas, and raisins, make sure to contact your vet, pronto!

A white woman's hand offers an Australian Shepherd Dog a snack from her right hand in sunlight

Onions, Garlic & Chives

These are more dangerous for cats to eat than dogs, but can still be toxic if large amounts are consumed by your pooch, whether in powder, cooked, or raw form.

Onions contain a substance called thiosulfate, which dogs don’t have the ability to digest. You can imagine how uncomfortable their stomachs will feel!

When dogs consume onions or garlic, the food might kill a large number of red blood cells, which can lead to anemia. If your dog eats a substantial amount, signs you will need to look out for are:

  • Weakness
  • Vomiting
  • Breathing problems

At worst, consuming large amounts of onion can cause red blood cell damage in your dog, but gastrointestinal irritation is more likely.

If your pooch has consumed a sizeable amount of onions, garlic, or chives, consult their veterinarian as soon as possible, then they can carry out any necessary procedures

Xylitol (Sweetener)

Xylitol is an artificial sweetener found in a lot of human food products. If a dog were to consume xylitol it can even have deadly effects, as well as a rapid decline in blood sugar and permanent liver damage. It can also cause an increase in insulin, resulting in hypoglycemia, symptoms being lethargy, vomiting, and loss of coordination. The smaller your dog, the less xylitol it needs to consume in order for it to have dangerous implications. So, xylitol is certainly food dogs can’t eat.

You need to act fast if your dog has digested xylitol, as it can take effect as quickly as 30 minutes after consumption. Symptoms will continue to show up to 12 hours after. Your veterinarian will diagnose the seriousness of it, but treatment will probably require hospitalization.

A brown and white spaniel takes a long chew treat in his mouth from a white person's hand


If your dog has consumed large amounts of salt it can result in sodium ion poisoning. Due to the dehydrating effects of salt, consumption of a salty snack can cause excessive thirst and urination. In severe cases, symptoms can additionally include vomiting, diarrhea, and a high temperature. It can even cause fatality in extreme cases.

The first thing to do if you know your dog has eaten salty food is to give them a large bowl of water. Rehydrating them is the first step toward avoiding salt poisoning. As soon as you’ve done that, call the vet. In some circumstances, hospitalization may be necessary for treatment, but the veterinarian can help diagnose how serious the situation is.

For a handy list of all foods that are toxic for dogs and that dogs can’t eat, we’ve put together a table of all known foods to avoid:

a blue and white infographic detailing what foods dog's can't eat

Sarah MiltonS

Sarah Milton

Comes from a family of animal lovers and got to grow up with a menagerie of pets! I believe owning a pet is a privilege and I love researching and creating informative, fun content for fellow pet owners to help their furry friends have the happiest and healthiest lives. When I’m not writing blogs, you can find me sharing a walk with my pet dachshund or at a yoga class!

Related posts


Join Our Mailing List For Pupdates & Access To Special Discounts!


Pay Securely With

Visa card
American Express card
Disover card
Google pay
Apple pay

© 2024 PetLab Co.

The information contained within this site is not intended as a substitute for professional medical or veterinary advice. PetLab Co. is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If your pet has, or you suspect your pet has any medical condition, you are urged to consult your veterinarian. Medical conditions can only be diagnosed by a licensed veterinarian. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Results May Vary. Not intended for human consumption. Please consult your veterinarian regarding any change in treatment or supplementation.
*In Amazon Pet Health Category in 2022
Back to top button