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Foods You Absolutely Shouldn’t Feed Your Dog

Our dogs are like family. Still, you shouldn’t feed dogs much of what people eat every day. Many staple foods, drinks, and snacks that we ingest can cause a multitude of problems for dogs, including potential death! Save your self sadness and a vet bill. Here is a list of food not to feed dogs, and what to do if your pet does get some forbidden delicacy.

Food Not To Feed Your Dog

Raw fish and any raw or undercooked meat, bones, and eggs.

Raw animal products can cause your dog to get sick from salmonella and other bacteria. Meat that’s too fatty can give your pet intestinal distress and leave you with a pretty gross mess to clean up.

Cooked bones.

Cooked bones can splinter and get stuck in your dog’s throat, or scratch or perforate other areas of their digestive tract.


Canines lack the enzyme necessary to digest onions in any form, cooked or raw. Onions contain thiosulfate, which is toxic to dogs.

Garlic or chives.

Garlic and chives are toxic for the same reason as onions. In fact any plant from the Allium species should not be feed to your pup.

Raisins or grapes.

Any amount of raisins or grapes is toxic to dogs. If you drop one on the floor, pick it up and throw it away before your dog can eat it.

Apple seeds.

While apples are okay for dogs, apple seeds contain cyanide. Over time, eating too many can harm your pet.


While avocados contain persin, it’s a toxin that’s not necessarily harmful to all pets. Still, avocado fruit should be kept away from your pet because the pit can be a choking hazard.


Peaches can cause digestive upset in some dogs. Like with apples, the bigger threat is the pit. A peach pit contains toxic compounds and also has a very rough texture which can damage your dog’s throat and digestive tract with its abrasiveness.


Again, the pit of the plum can be toxic to dogs.

Citrus fruits.

The high sugar content of citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and clementines can cause your dog intestinal distress. Don’t risk your dog’s tummy and your having to break out the carpet cleaner.

Gum, or anything containing xylitol.

Gum is dangerous for dogs because most chewing gum contains the sweetener xylitol. Even the smallest amount can be toxic for your dog. Xylitol can cause seizures, organ failure, or even death in dogs.


Dogs will occasionally eat tobacco products, mistaking them for food or a chew toy. Any form of nicotine, whether it’s in a cigarette, nicotine gum, or a vape pen, is poisonous to dogs.


While a small amount of milk chocolate might not harm your dog, it’s hard to tell what amount of theobromine and caffeine in chocolate will damage your dog. Usually, the darker the chocolate, the more seriously it could affect your dog. Cocoa powder is the most dangerous to dogs.

Coffee, or anything with caffeine.

Caffeine is potentially lethal to dogs, though it would have to drink a whole lot of brewed coffee to hit that level. More dangerous are coffee beans or coffee grounds. Keep your dog out of the trash!

Coconut, or coconut oil.

The medium-chain triglycerides in coconut meat and coconut oil can cause intestinal distress in your canine companion. From my research, coconut water is not harmful for dogs.

Macadamia nuts, almonds, pecans, and walnuts.

Depending on the nut, your dog can develop intestinal distress, and intestinal blockage, or organ damage.


The yeast and/or the alcohol in wine, beer, and spirits can damage your dog.

Anything salty.

Too much salt can cause sodium poisoning in your pet. Dogs really don’t need their food salted at all. That’s a human habit.

Yeast dough.

Raw dough can ferment in your dog’s stomach and create a lot of gas in their system. The buildup is painful, and potentially deadly.

What To Do If Your Dog Eats Bad Food

If you suspect your dog has eaten one of these potentially harmful food products, call your vet or call Animal Poison Control run by the ASPCA. The number is staffed 24 hours a day and 365 days a year. Call 888-426-4435. Record this with your other emergency numbers and post in a conspicuous place in your kitchen.

Print off the infographic below and keep it handy for both what food not to feed your dog, and the number to call in case you have a question.

Food Not To Feed Your Dog. Love your pets? Learn unique ways to board your dogs when you travel.

Anne Parris

Anne Parris is a managing partner Midlife Boulevard. Her personal blog, Not A Supermom, is your typical mommy blog that her kids say used to be funnier. Anne has a business degree and a dusty résumé from a top accounting firm and a Fortune 500 company, which she reminds herself of every time she is washing underpants. She lives with her family in Virginia and blogs mostly to support her coffee habit.

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Suzanne Fluhr

Sunday 20th of August 2017

Thanks for posting this. I knew about some of these foods being poisonous for dogs, but not all of them. It's helpful to have it all in one place.

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