11 Toxic Foods For Dogs- Human Foods for Dogs to Avoid
A favorite past time of many dogs is to watch and “help” their owner cook. Plonking themselves by your feet ready to catch any fallen ingredients. Offering their service to dispose of food trimmings and off-cuts!
Symbiotic relationships such as this can work quite well as long as the household chef is mindful of exactly what ingredients their dog is receiving. Especially considering many of our everyday food items and ingredients are toxic foods for dogs!
Obviously extra tidbits and meat off-cuts can soon add up calorie wise and if given in excess will result in an obese dog. But even more alarming is the potential for your kitchen companion to wind up at the local vet clinic if foods poisonous to dogs are accidentally fed.
This also applies to the feeding of table scraps and left-over meals whose ingredients list can often include foods toxic to dogs.
What you may consider as tasty menu options (for example French onion soup, avocado salad, chocolate brownies and macadamia slice), is actually poisonous food for dogs- a dangerous menu indeed!
So it pays to think twice before sharing your culinary masterpieces with your number one canine fan. All the more reason to abstain from feeding your dog too many left-overs especially if they contain any of the 11 human foods poisonous to dogs listed below!
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Toxic Foods for Dogs:11 Poisonous Foods for Dogs to Avoid
- Chocolate & cocoa– Cocoa contains theobromine which adversely affects the heart, central nervous system, lungs and liver of dogs. Typical signs of intoxication include excitement, trembling, panting and collapse. The greater the cocoa content of chocolate the more toxic it is.
- Onion (raw, cooked, powdered) – When eaten by dogs, onion causes destruction of the red blood cells resulting in anemia. Symptoms typically include weakness 3-5 days after consumption, red tinged urine and exercise intolerance.
- Garlic (raw, cooked and powdered). Like onion, garlic can also destroy dog’s red blood cells. The effects of this toxic food for dogs can be cumulative.
- Grapes, raisins and sultanas– can cause vomiting diarrhea, weakness, staggering gait and abdominal pain approx. 24 hours after consumption. Serious intoxication by this poisonous food for dogs can result in kidney failure. Discover fruits good for dogs here.
- Avocado- contains persin which can cause abdominal upset and symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea. The skin and seed portion of the avocado fruit are most toxic. Guatemalan variety fruits are known to contain flesh toxic to dogs. The leaves and bark of avocado trees are also poisonous and avocado seeds can cause intestinal obstruction if swallowed.
- Caffeine (soft drinks, coffee beans, coffee grounds, tea, coffee) – Caffeine containing foods should not be considered suitable human foods for dogs. Caffeine can affect the heart, lungs and central nervous system of dogs. Symptoms of intoxication include hyper excitability, vomiting, tremors and convulsions.
- Macadamia nuts– cause vomiting, muscle and joint pain, weakness of hind legs and a wobbly gait 6-24 hours after consumption. The toxic effects of this poisonous food for dogs may persist for 48 hrs.
- Stone fruit seeds (peach, plum, apricot, cherry) – seeds contain cyanide and if eaten can cause vomiting, rapid and irregular heart rate, heavy breathing and coma. Larger seeds also pose risk of causing intestinal blockage requiring surgical removal.
- Pizza and bread dough– The high fat, salt and calorie content of pizza makes it an unsuitable human food for dogs. Uncooked pizza dough can rapidly expand in size if eaten by dogs. Within the warm moist environs of the stomach, yeast becomes activated causing dough to rise, resulting in painful, potentially life threatening bloat.
- Xylitol Artificial Sweetener (found in sugar free gums, toothpaste, sugar free sweets). Xylitol causes insulin release in dogs resulting in a sudden drop in blood sugar levels. Weakness, collapse and seizure can occur within half an hour of consumption. Toxic foods for dogs containing xylitol, have been linked with liver failure.
- Alcohol– all forms of alcohol are toxic to dogs. Dogs are much more sensitive to alcohol than humans. Typical signs include vomiting, disorientation and stupor progressing to cardiac arrest.
Why are These Human Foods Toxic to Dogs?
The physiological makeup and digestive capacity of dogs is quite different to ourselves and this is why some of the foods that we happily eat pose as poisonous foods for dogs. The toxic effects of these foods vary greatly between dogs and can be hard to predict.
For example it is not uncommon to come across dogs that happily eat avocado on a regular basis with no toxic effect (such as those dogs that eat the fallen fruit from fruiting avocado trees in their home garden). And yet other dogs, who have consumed only a small amount of avocado, end up with serious tummy upsets.
The effects from all eleven toxic foods for dogs are dose dependent, so the greater the amount of the food consumed the more likely resulting intoxication. Likewise if you own a small dog the more likely their intoxication if one of these poisonous foods is consumed.
So it pays to always keep a close eye on exactly what your dog consumes and to think twice before feeding your dog left over meals. It’s also a good idea to dog-proof your kitchen to prevent your dog’s access to the pantry, fridge and food storage areas.
Should a toxic dog food be accidentally consumed by your furred friend, try to determine exactly how much has been eaten and then seek immediate advice from your veterinarian.
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