Your dog is like family to you. It makes sense that you feed your pet with good quality natural pet foods to keep them healthy and happy.  But did you know certain human foods are dangerous for dogs?  Here is a list of the foods you should never serve your dog as dog food.

Dogs poisonings

Accord to one study, 95% to 98% of all requests for help due to poisonings come from pet owners of dogs and cats. Most of these calls come in the summer or in December during the holidays when pets are apt to eat foods that aren’t safe. Most of these poisonings happen when someone feeds a dog or cat some human food that is toxic to them.

What should you do if your dog eats something dangerous?

If you think your dog has ingested toxic food, act immediately, and follow these steps.

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1 – Call your vet’s office right away.

Follow their directions.  Give your vet as much information as possible about your dog’s symptoms. Your vet may instruct you to induce vomiting or bring your dog into the office.

2 – Call the pet poison hotline (888.426.4435) for advice.

This ASPCA hotline is staffed for emergencies like this 24 hours per day. Don’t hesitate. They might offer you life-saving advice.

3 – If your dog hasn’t eaten for several hours, try offering them a small meal.

If they refuse to eat, they are probably going to vomit. Don’t force the issue

4 – Induce vomiting under the vet’s guidance

If your vet suggests that you Induce vomiting, try giving your dog 1 teaspoon of 3% hydrogen peroxide per pound of your dog’s weight plus 3  teaspoons of water.  Use a turkey baster or syringe to administer the peroxide and water. Your dog should vomit within 15 minutes. If not, call your vet back to see what they recommend.

15 Things Never to Offer as Dog Food

Do not assume that because food is healthy for you, it will be healthy for your dog. Dogs may have a toxic reaction to even the healthiest human foods. Here’s a list of the foods you should never feed your dog as a treat or dog food.

1 – Garlic

According to the American Kennel Club, garlic in even the smallest amount is dangerous for your dog. It damages your dogs’ gastrointestinal tract causing nausea, drooling, vomiting, and diarrhea. Garlic is in the allium family, which contains an inorganic compound called thiosulfate. It can also cause damage to your dog’s red blood cells. All types of garlic, whether fresh, powdered, or dried, are dangerous for your dog.

2 – Onions, leeks, or chives

Similar to garlic, these veggies are in the allium family. They hurt your dogs’ digestive tract and red blood cells. If you think your dog has ingested any of these foods, call your vet right away.

3 – Chocolate

Another toxic food for your dog is chocolate. It contains methylxanthine, which causes gastrointestinal distress. If your dog eats enough, it can have seizures or die. Dark chocolate is more dangerous than milk chocolate.

4 – Grapes and raisins

Grapes and raisins are very dangerous for your pet. According to Purina, researchers aren’t sure what the exact toxic ingredient could be, but they think it could have something to do because dogs can’t metabolize flavonoids, tannins, or monosaccharides found in grapes and raisins.  Serious kidney failure and sudden death are the side effects if your dog eats grapes. Call your vet immediately if you think your dog has eaten grapes or raisins.

5 – Macadamia nuts

Weakness in the back legs, diarrhea, and vomiting are side effects your dog may experience if they eat these fatty nuts. Macadamia nuts cause pancreatitis, which is inflammation of the pancreas. Just to be safe, it’s best to avoid giving your dogs any type of nut since so many are toxic and others are a choking hazard.

6 – Yeast in the dough

If you’re baking bread, keep a close eye on your dog. ASPCA warns that eating dough with active yeast can cause bloating and stomach problems. Some dogs can lead to a twisted intestine, a life-threatening emergency that may require immediate surgery. Once baked, your pup can enjoy a small bite of bread occasionally…as long as it’s not raisin bread.

7 – Oranges. Lemons and grapefruit

Citrus fruits, although packed with vitamin C, are dangerous for your pet. The seeds, peels, and stems present the biggest problems. But citrus, in general, can irritate your pooch’s stomach. Citrus essential oils are also dangerous, irritating your dog’s central nervous system.

8 – Raw meat or eggs

Raw meats and eggs can contain salmonella, bacteria, or E. coli that can make you and your dog very sick. Raw eggs contain avidin, an enzyme the slows down your dog’s ability to absorb B vitamins. This can lead to problems with their coat and skin.

Some might argue that dogs eat raw meat in the wild. While that is true, your pet leads a very pampered life in comparison. His or her tummy is not accustomed to this diet.

9 – Xylitol

Any synthetic sweetener is dangerous for your dog, but xylitol is especially toxic for dogs. This sweetener is used in lots of gums, candies, baked goods, and toothpaste. If your dog ingests any of these products, call your vet right away. Synthetic sweeteners induce insulin release, which leads to liver failure. Vomiting, lethargy, and failing over due to loss of coordination are side effects of your dog eating this sweetener.

10 – Salty snacks

Salt is a big no-no for all pets. If your dog eats salty foods, it can lead to sodium poisoning. Watch for these signs that your dog has eaten something with a lot of salt:

  • Excessive thirst
  • Excessive urination
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Tremors
  • Temperature
  • Seizures

Never give your dog snacks like potato chips, pretzels, salted popcorn, or tortilla chips.

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11 – Avocados

How can something so good be so bad? Avocados are delicious and healthy for humans, but not for your dog. Avocadoes contain persin that causes diarrhea and vomiting in dogs. Keep the avocado seed away from your dog since it’s toxic, plus your dog could choke on it.

12 – Unripe tomatoes

Ripe tomatoes are okay for your dog to eat if they don’t eat too many, but unripe tomatoes are unsafe for dogs. These little green veggies contain “tomatine,” which damages your dog’s nervous system, digestive tract, and kidneys. If you have a garden, be sure to fence it in to keep out your hungry furry friend.

13 – Any fruits with seeds and pits

Fruits that contain seeds and pits are hazardous for your dog. Most dogs are small enough that when they ingest fruit seeds or pits, they get poisoned. Pet owners are surprised to learn that chemicals in pits change to cyanide when mixed with stomach acid. It’s easy to miss some seeds and pits if they fall on the floor. So, keep a close eye on your dog when you’re working with fruits with pits or seeds.

14 – Coffee

You may love your morning cup of hot coffee. It’s a quick pick me up for you, but your dog doesn’t need a caffeine boost. In fact, caffeine will poison your dog. Caffeine poisoning causes:

  • Restlessness
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Fast breathing
  • Heart palpitations
  • Tremors
  • Falling

If you think your dog has drunk or eaten something with caffeine in it, call your vet right away.

15 – Raw potato

Raw potatoes seem harmless, but they are unsafe food to feed your dog. Raw white potatoes are part of the nightshade veggie family, which contains solanine, a toxic compound for dogs. Cooking the potatoes diminishes the solanine, so they’re safe for your dog to eat.

What human foods can you serve as dog food?

Of course, not all human foods are bad for your dog. There are lots of good fruits and veggies to feed your dog without worry. Here is a list of the best human foods you can serve as dog food.


If you choose to give your furry friend these fruits, be sure to wash them completely, remove all the seeds, then cut them up in small bite-size pieces to prevent choking.

  • Blueberries
  • Pears
  • Bananas
  • Cantaloupe


Like fruits, be sure to completely wash, peel and seed these vegetables before giving them to your dog. Never give your dog whole pieces of vegetables since they may cause your dog to choke.

  • Carrots
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Green beans

Cooked meat

Be sure the meat is cooked completely and deboned. Avoid giving your dog meat with any type of spice or sauce since these may be toxic to your dog.

  • Cooked chicken that has been deboned. Skip rotisserie chicken since they’re prepared with a lot of salt. Never give your dog chicken bones.
  • Ground beef

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Final thoughts on things you should never use as dog food

Your dog is like family, so it’s important to feed your pooch healthy foods. When you’re having a meal or a snack, you may be tempted to give your dog a little snack, but resist that urge and get your pooch a dog treat. Food that is safe and healthy for you may be toxic for your dog. Even small pieces of some foods can cause a problem. Get familiar with what foods are toxic and have the pet poison hotline on your phone.

If you think your dog has ingested toxic food, call your vet or the hotline right away. They will tell you what to do. Of course, there are lots of safe human foods your dog can eat. Give these as little treats once in a while, or follow your vet’s suggestions on how to serve these foods as dog food for your dog.