Potentially harmful foods for dogs


Potentially harmful foods for dogs

The following information was kindly researched, compiled and provided by Laverne Hyman.



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Permission was kindly given to us by The Humane Society of the United States to take some of the following information off their website. Please look at their website for more information www.humanesociety.org

Avocados (skin & pit) are toxic to dogs. They can cause breathing difficulties, fluid accumulation in the chest, abdomen and heart. They can also lead to cases of pancreatitis.

Onions destroy red blood cells and can cause anemia, weakness and breathing difficulties. Even small amounts can cause cumulative damage over time. This includes onions or chives, in raw, powdered, dehydrated or cooked form.

Large amounts of garlic cause the same problems as onions.

Grapes and raisins can cause kidney failure in dogs. As few as five raisins can kill them. If a dog doesn't eat enough to kill him in one go, small amounts over a period can cause severe damage.

Tomatoes can cause tremors and heart arrhythmia. Tomato plants are the most toxic. All parts of the tomato plant, except the tomato itself, are also toxic to humans.

Nutmeg can cause tremors, seizures and death.

Caffeine (from coffee, coffee grounds, tea or tea bags) stimulates the central nervous and cardiac systems, and can cause vomiting, restlessness, heart palpitations and even death within hours.

Diet products containing the sweetener Xylitol can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar, resulting in depression, loss of coordination and seizures. Unless treatment is given quickly, the dog could die.

Macadamia nuts can cause weakness, muscle tremor and paralysis. These symptoms are usually temporary.

Walnuts are also poisonous to dogs.

Chocolate can cause seizures, coma and death. Baker's chocolate is the most dangerous. The darker the chocolate, the more dangerous, but any chocolate can be fatal. An ounce of chocolate can kill a 30-pound dog.

The symptoms might not show up for a while, leading you to believe everything is fine. However, death can occur within 24 hours.

Apple seeds and the pits of cherries, peaches, pears and plumbs and apricots contain cyanide, which is poisonous.

Salty foods may make dogs drink too much water. This could lead to the development of bloat, which is fatal unless urgently treated. Bloat is where the stomach fills up with gas and, within several hours, it may twist and cause death.

Too much fat or fried food can cause pancreatitis. This includes foods such as bacon and ham.

Raw liver or too much cooked liver (three servings a week) can lead to vitamin A toxicity. This can cause deformed bones, excessive bone growth on the elbows and spine, weight loss and anorexia. Check the label on your dog food to make sure that it does not contain liver if you are already feeding liver.

Wild mushrooms can cause abdominal pain, drooling, liver damage, kidney damage, vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions, coma or death.

Raw egg whites contain a protein called avidin, which can deplete your dog of biotin, one of the B vitamins. Biotin is essential to your dog's growth and to the health of his coat. A lack of biotin can cause hair loss, weakness, growth retardation, or skeletal deformity.

Grains should not be given in large quantities and should not make up a large part of your dog's diet. But rice is generally safe if given in small quantities.

Cooked bones can splinter and tear a dog's internal organs.

Some vegetables (lettuce, potatoes or yams) are indigestible to dogs. Potato peels and green potatoes are dangerous.  Other vegetables can be good, so do some research before feeding a vegetable.

Dairy products are high in fat, which can lead to pancreatitis, gas and diarrhea. A small amount of non- fat, plain yogurt is usually safe.

Coins made from the 1980s to today contain zinc, which can cause kidney failure and damage to red blood cells. A dog that consumes even one penny can become quite sick or even die if the penny is not removed.

Some insects accumulate cardiac glycosicles in their bodies from the milk woods (Asclepiadaceae) on which they feed. An example of this is the "Danouis Chrysippus", or Monarch Butterfly. Eating these insects can lead to cardiac failure.

A small amount of certain human pain medication over a period of time can cause stomach ulcers. Cats do not have the enzyme to break down paracetomol, so any medications containing paracetomol are enough to kill a cat.


It is vital to consult your veterinarian before giving your pets any medication.


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