Keeping Your Dog Safe from Toxic Pet Foods [Infographic]

toxic pet foods cover

My grandmother was a dog lover, but she always had one hard and fast rule when it came to dogs: No human food. No matter how sad her dogs would look hoping for a little holiday turkey or some gravy, she never gave in to their begging.

Her saying whenever we grandchildren would try to sneak her two dogs a little bit of food from the table was always a simple one.

I don’t eat the dog’s food, so the dogs shouldn’t eat my food.

Even though she was doing that a few decades ago, maybe grandma was ahead of her time. As veterinarians and dog owners have learned, feeding a dog too much food designed for human consumption can lead to a variety of health problems for the dog. Some foods that humans regularly eat can even be toxic to canines, leading to health problems, perhaps even death.

dog begging for bad human food

Dogs and Dangerous Foods

It would be easier for pet owners if dogs would just ignore foods that were toxic for them, but most dogs don’t. Pet owners just have to be extremely cautious about their food storage habits and their timeliness in cleaning up and discarding of food after a meal. It only takes one mistake with a certain type of food left on a counter for a dog to ingest it and become seriously ill.

As you’re trying to make sure your dog is safe around human food, it’s worth memorizing the list of six foods that are especially dangerous for dogs to eat that I’ve included here. While this list isn’t all-inclusive, hopefully it can help you become especially diligent about cleaning up these foods after you’ve eaten them at your home.

Toxic Pet Foods

1.Avocado: All parts of the avocado plant could make certain dogs ill, including the seeds and leaves.

2.Caffeine: Dogs may experience vomiting or even seizures after drinking a beverage that contains a large amount of caffeine.

3.Chocolate: The chemicals in chocolate can be especially toxic to dog, including causing permanent damage to the dog’s internal organs, including the heart and kidneys. Darker chocolates are typically more toxic for dogs versus a milk chocolate or a white chocolate.

4.Grapes, sultanas, and raisins. Just a few grapes can be especially tough on a dog’s digestive system, causing vomiting or dehydration.

5.High fat foods. If you feed your dog table scraps, especially those with high fat content such as are consumed often around the holidays, the dog could suffer from diarrhea and Consistent eating of high-fat foods aimed at humans can lead to kidney damage in dogs. Mince pie fits in this category, especially if it contains raisins.

5.Macadamia nuts: Even after ingesting just a few macadamia nuts, a dog may experience vomiting or weakness. Macadamia nuts aren’t fatal to the dog typically, but it could become very sick. The symptoms may not appear for as long as 48 hours though.

Every Dog is Different

You may have fed your dog some of the foods listed here and in the infographic below, and it may not have become sick. Just keep in mind that that each dog is a little different in terms of how these foods interact with them. Even dogs of the same breed may have differing food reactions, even if it’s the same human food prepared in the same manner.

To be as safe as possible, just don’t let your dog eat any of the foods listed on our toxic pet foods infographic, either purposefully or accidentally. Or to be even safer, just follow my grandma’s advice and keep all human food away from your dogs. They’ll be healthier and safer in the long run … as long as you can handle the short-term guilt over ignoring the dog’s best attempts at begging.

food that is toxic to pets

Sloan McKinney is a journalist based in Southern California. After writing about pop culture for a number of years, she has recently begun writing for a new audience. Inspired by DeAnthony, her cat, as well as her dog Max, Sloan now hopes to help other pet owners guarantee their animal companions happy and healthy lives.