As far as canine food, the best thing is to stick with the dog food your veterinarian recommends for your pet, but it’s natural to want to give treats every now and then. That’s well and fine, as long as you avoid using these foods.
Onions and garlic
Garlic, onions, and leeks are part of the allium plant family, which can break down red blood cells in canines. This can cause your dog to become anemic, explains Justine Lee, a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care. Garlic in particular is five times more toxic to dogs than the other allium plants, but even the onion powder found in baby food can cause an issue, WebMD reports. Eating large amounts of raw garlic and onions is particularly concerning, but smaller amounts over a consistent amount of time can also cause issues. Symptoms of anemia in your dog can include weakness, vomiting, little interest in food, and breathlessness, among others.
Peaches, plums, and persimmons
If you live in an area with peach and plum trees, it’s best to pay careful attention. The fruit itself isn’t the issue â€” it’s the pits inside that cause damage. Most obviously, the pits can cause intestinal blockages that can turn serious. However, the pits also contain cyanide, which is toxic to humans and pets alike. Humans know to not take a bite out of the pit, while your dog might continue chowing down.
You might have chalked this one up to hype or an old wive’s tale, but chocolate really isn’t good for your dog. Like caffeine, chocolate contains methylxanthines, and can carry the same dangerous side effects as caffeine. All types of chocolate contain these compounds, though it’s more prevalent in some kinds. Dark chocolate, chocolate mulch, and unsweetened baker’s chocolate are particularly potent and harmful to dogs, according to WebMD.
“Eating too much salt can cause excessive thirst and urination and lead to sodium ion poisoning,” WebMD writes. While we know we should drink plenty of water â€” especially the moment we actually begin to feel thirsty â€” we might not remember to monitor our pet’s water intake. A chip or two won’t cause major harm, but it’s best to dole out low-sodium alternatives when possible.
Yeast in any form before it’s baked is extremely dangerous for your dog, as it will continue rising in their stomach. “Ingestion of yeast dough can cause gas to accumulate in your dog’s digestive system as a result of the dough rising,” VetsNow explains. “Not only can this be painful but it may also cause the stomach or intestines to become obstructed (blocked) or distended.” The yeast also produces ethanol as a by-product, which in your dog can make them become drunk.
Avocados contain a compound called persin, which can be toxic to dogs. Among other issues, persin can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and heart congestion in canines. Not only is persin in the fruit itself, but it’s also in the pit, leaves, and even the bark of an avocado tree.
Candy and gum
Candy and gum will often contain a sweetener called xylitol, which is also found in toothpaste and some diet foods. In dogs, xylitol can lead to an insulin spike, which ultimately is bad for blood sugar and can potentially cause damage to the liver. According to Good Housekeeping, if xylitol is among the first three to five ingredients, it’s probably toxic for your pup.
Corn on the cob
Corn might be the No. 1 filler ingredient in many dog foods, but skip the au naturel version that comes on a cob when you’re feeding it to your pet. Dogs will continue chomping on the cob long after the kernels are gone, and ingesting large bits of the cob could cause digestive issues, primarily blockages.
Grapes and raisins
The compound in grapes and raisins that is toxic to dogs is unknown, the ASPCA reports. Whatever it is, it’s dangerous enough that it can cause kidney failure in canines, and feeding grapes or raisins to your dog should be avoided completely. According to Canine Journal, eating these otherwise innocuous snacks can also cause severe liver damage.
Milk and dairy products
Not all dogs are lactose intolerant, and those who aren’t will be fine eating the occasional ice cream or yogurt treat. Even so, it’s best to avoid milk and dairy products for the most part. As with most foods that dogs can’t eat, they’ll experience vomiting, diarrhea, and other digestive issues if they are lactose intolerant. In some cases, an allergic reaction could also occur, which will most likely take the form of itchiness.