What Foods Dogs Can't Eat
December 20, 2018 | 3 min read
Updated December 20, 2018
By Sarah Milton
Published: December 20, 2018
Updated: May 5, 2023
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!
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:
- 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 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.
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:
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!