There are some foods which can pose a serious health risk to dogs. Side effects range from mild digestion issues to severe illness, coma, or even death. The following is a list of common food items that should not be fed to your dog.
Alcoholic beverages. These can cause intoxication as well as coma and/or death.
Chocolate, tea, coffee. These foods contain caffeine and theobromine or theophylline, which can affect the nervous system and heart.
Garlic and onions. Contain disulfides and sulfoxides, which can damage red blood cells and cause anemia. Cats are more likely to get this than dogs. Garlic is less toxic than onions.
Hops. Unknown compound which causes panting, elevated temperature, increased heart rate, seizures, and even death.
Liver. In large amounts, vitamin A toxicity can affect the bones and muscles.
Macadamia nuts. Raw or roasted, these contain an unknown toxin and can affect the nervous system, the digestive system, and the muscles.
Mushrooms. May contain toxins which can affect multiple organs, cause shock and even death.
Persimmons. These seeds may cause an intestinal obstruction and enteritis.
Raisins and grapes. These have an unknown toxin that can cause renal (kidney) damage. No problem has been found with grape seed extract.
Rhubarb, potato and tomato leaves, tomato and potato stems. These foods contain oxalates, which can affect the nervous, digestive and urinary systems.
Salmon. Salmon Poisoning Disease is a potentially fatal condition seen only in dogs that eat certain types of raw fish. Salmon and other anadromous fish (fish that swim upstream to breed such as trout and steelhead) can be infected with a parasite called Nanophyetus salmincola. This is most prevalent in the Pacific Northwest (Washington, Oregon and California).
Salt. May cause an electrolyte imbalance.
Photo: Torri 479
Supplements that contain Iron. Can damage the digestive system lining and may be toxic to liver, kidneys and other organs.
Sugarless Chewing Gum. May contain Xylitol which can cause sudden drop in blood sugar, weakness, vomiting, lethargy, loss of coordination and even seizures as well as possible Kidney failure. Xylitol can also be found in candy and other food items.
Sugary foods. May lead to obesity, dental problems and could result in diabetes mellitus.
Tobacco. Contains nicotine, which affects the nervous and digestive systems. It can lead to a rapid heart beat, collapse, coma or death.
Yeast dough. Unbaked dough. Yeast expands and produces gas in the digestive system, which can cause the stomach or intestines to rupture.
You should assume that if a food item is not healthy for you, it is not healthy for your dog. There are many other household items that are toxic to your dog as well, such as prescription and over-the-counter medications, household plants (oleander, sago palm or yew plant), antifreeze, batteries and mothballs, just to name a few. If your dog has consumed any of the items listed or something that you are not sure of, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Animal Poison Control Center – 888-4ANI-HELP (888-426-4435)