7 Human Foods that Could Be Poisonous for Dogs

Mar 14, 2019

Updated: 5/20/2020

Every single day dogs are accidentally poisoned by “people food.” Figure out the culprits to protect your pup. (photo credit: Camylla Battani)

March is Poison Prevention Month, and doggie daycare Hounds Town USA wants to remind everyone to keep your dog safe! Some of our favorite foods (and vices) are poisonous to pets. If you suspect that your pup has ingested any of these items, please contact the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center at (888)426-4435 immediately for assistance.

1. Chocolate

The problem with chocolate, especially dark chocolate and baking chocolate, is that it contains methylxanthines which are extremely poisonous to dogs. Depending on weight, even just 3 ounces of dark chocolate (picture less than half a cup) can induce severe reactions like vomiting, tremors, seizures, and even death. Keep your chocolate someplace safe where it can’t fall or accidentally be ingested by your dog. And make sure your kids don’t eat chocolate in a place where pieces can be inhaled by your favorite canine vacuum cleaner.

2. Sugar-Free Gum

Or really anything that can be made with the sweetener xylitol. Xylitol consumption can lead to liver failure in dogs, depending on the amount consumed. Even one pack of gum can be fatal in some dogs. This stuff can even be found in mouthwashes and toothpaste, so keep that tube out of reach so your pup doesn’t use it as a chew toy!

3. Onion and Garlic

We all love our pizza and tomato sauce, but onions and garlic (along with leeks and chives) are toxic for dogs. Whether they’re raw, in powdered form, pill form, or even in foods seasoned with them, onions and garlic (especially) are a no-no for your pet. The reaction depends on the amount consumed, but even a little bit over time can be very harmful. Besides, do we really want to contribute to the canine halitosis crisis?

4. Raisins and Grapes

Both of these should be avoided at all costs, as they are highly toxic to dogs and could potentially lead to kidney failure. The puzzling bit for doctors though is that they still haven’t figured out why. Time is of the essence with exposure, so if you suspect your dog has eaten raisins or grapes, get medical help immediately.

 5. Macadamia Nuts

For some reason, macadamia nuts are toxic to dogs and can result in difficulty walking, diarrhea, and vomiting. Rare cases can result in pancreatitis because of the high-fat content in nuts (and this also applies to almonds, pecans, and walnuts), but no matter how many macadamias were consumed, you should consult with the vet about the best way to treat.

6. Booze

If humans can get alcohol poisoning, rest assured your pup can too. In fact, any amount of alcohol is considered poisonous to dogs. That includes beer, wine, cocktails, and even boozy desserts and foods. The bottom line? Just say no!

7. Marijuana Edibles

The Pet Poison Hotline has reported a massive increase in cases around marijuana toxicity. Whether it’s an edible, a joint, or second-hand marijuana smoke inhalation, it’s never safe to expose your dog to marijuana. Dogs can experience a variety of effects from vomiting and difficulty walking to tremors and seizures. They can even potentially fall into a coma. Always get help if your dog has consumed marijuana. The most important thing is, to be honest with your vet. They want your dog to be as healthy as you do!

For more information on Hounds Town, visit www.houndstownusa.com.