When your dog is giving you sad puppy eyes from beneath the table at dinnertime, we know firsthand how hard it is to not spoon them everything on your plate (especially when what’s on your plate is not something you’re particularly fond of)! There are quite a few human foods that are considered dangerous and highly toxic to dogs– and if you’ve got a friendly pooch perched at the end of your dinner table every night, it’s important to know which foods are toxic, and which are safe. Here are 10 human foods your dog should never eat:
A common ingredient in sugar-free gum, Xylitol can be fatal and has almost immediate effects on dogs if consumed. Xylitol is extremely toxic, so make sure to check packaging on anything labeled “sugar-free” before feeding it to your dog. In fact, it might be better to completely avoid feeding your dog anything with the “sugar-free” label altogether.
You should never, under any circumstance, feed your dog chocolate. For dogs, and many other animals, it’s a highly toxic substance that has fatal potential. If you keep chocolate around the house, store it in a highly inaccessible place that your dog won’t be able to reach– preferably high off the ground and stored away in a safe space. If your dog eats even just a small amount, take them to the vet right away.
3. Onion and Garlic
Onion and garlic are included in the allium group, a plant family containing Allium– which is highly toxic and dangerous for both dogs and cats. Allium damages red blood cells, which reduces oxygen flow, and results in anemia, organ failure, or fatal consequences.
While cinnamon is not the most toxic or dangerous spice, it’s best to avoid giving it to your dog. It’s an irritant which, in large quantities, can lower your dog’s blood sugar– but won’t cause any serious long-term damage if taken in extremely small amounts. Overall, to be on the safe side, it’s best to avoid altogether if you’re unsure about what’s considered a safe amount.
Almonds are dangerous for the esophagus, causing scraping, tearing or irritation. They also increase risk of developing pancreatitis due to high fat content, while simultaneously, high salt concentration can lead to “water retention and salt toxicity” if consumed in large quantities.
6. Milk and Dairy Products
Milk is another food that, if consumed in large quantities, can lead to pancreatitis because of its high fat concentration and natural sugars. Other dairy products run the same risks, although not as much as milk. For example, cheese is much safer to feed your dog than milk, and is often used to disguise pills when trying to feed them to your dog. Alternative milks should also be avoided, especially almond, cashew, and oat milks. Coconut milk is fine to give to your dog, since it’s a naturally occurring product, and isn’t classified as a milk or nut (like cow milk or nuts such as almonds and cashews).
7. Grapes and Raisins
Since they contain an unknown substance that’s highly toxic to dogs– potentially causing liver failure– grapes and raisins are an off-limits food for dogs. According to ASPCA, the mysterious toxicity of these foods has been continuing for 20 years– and there’s still no concrete understanding as to why grapes and raisins are so toxic to dogs and their livers. A going theory recently stated that the culprit is a toxic substance known as “tartaric acid.” There’s also a possibility that this tartaric acid causes kidney failure as well as liver failure, just one more reason to avoid grapes and raisins at all costs.
A fungicidal toxin known as persin is the cause of this well-loved food’s toxicity, causing dangerous side effects for dogs. When scouring the internet, you’re sure to find many sources and pet blogs telling you that avocado isn’t AS toxic for dogs as it is for other animals, therefore meaning that it’s fine to feed avocado to your dog. This is not the case. Although avocados may be LESS toxic for dogs than for other animals, it doesn’t mean the food is 100% safe for your pup to eat. Avocados contain persin in various quantities depending on the part of the fruit, which is dangerous, but at the same time, avocados are also high in fat– which is a danger for developing pancreatitis.
For dogs, caffeine is considered a toxic substance due to the side effects it causes. These can include: increase in blood pressure (causing cardiac arrhythmias), loss of muscle control, seizures, or vomiting and diarrhea.
10. Raw Eggs
While eggs contain high amounts of protein, raw eggs are completely toxic to dogs, and should be avoided at all costs! Cooked eggs are fine to feed to your dog, and as we mentioned, are a great source of protein. But when eggs are ingested raw, they contain an enzyme called “avidin” which restricts the absorption of a B Vitamin called biotin. This leads to a biotin deficiency, which puts dogs at risk of developing an unhealthy coat, skin problems, and even the possibility of salmonella poisoning.