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Toxic Dog Food List: What to Avoid for Your Pup's Health

Toxic Dog Food List: What to Avoid for Your Pup's Health

Most dog owners love giving their canine companions scraps from the table, but it's important to know exactly which human foods can be poisonous to dogs and why it is important to keep them out of reach when you're away. In this post, our Memphis vets share a comprehensive list of foods that are toxic to dogs.

As responsible pet owners, ensuring the health and well-being of our beloved dogs is of utmost importance. One crucial aspect of their care is providing a safe and nutritious diet. Unfortunately, there are certain types of dog food that can be toxic and harmful to our furry friends. 

Below is a list of common household foods that are toxic to dogs.

1. Xylitol-Containing Products

Xylitol is an artificial sweetener commonly found in sugar-free gum, candies, baked goods, and some peanut butter brands. It is highly toxic to dogs and can cause a sudden release of insulin, leading to a dangerous drop in blood sugar levels. Xylitol ingestion can result in symptoms such as vomiting, loss of coordination, seizures, and liver failure. Always check ingredient labels carefully and keep xylitol-containing products out of your dog's reach. 

2. Chocolate and Caffeine

Chocolate and caffeine-containing products, such as coffee grounds and energy drinks, should never be given to dogs. These contain methylxanthines that can cause symptoms ranging from increased heart rate and agitation to seizures and even death.

3. Grapes and Raisins

Grapes and raisins may seem harmless, but they can cause kidney failure in dogs. Even a small amount can lead to severe illness, so it's crucial to keep them away from your canine companion.

4. Onions and Garlic

Onions and garlic, whether raw, cooked, or powdered, can damage a dog's red blood cell production and potentially lead to anemia. It's best to avoid feeding them any food that contains these ingredients, including certain seasonings and sauces.

5. Avocado

While avocados are a healthy fat that offer numerous health benefits for humans, they can be toxic to dogs. There is a content in avocados called persin which is damaging to dogs' GI tracts. it can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and pancreatitis in canines. 

6. Corn on the Cob

Although corn kernels themselves can mostly be safely ingested by dogs, the cob (or pieces of it) are very difficult for your dog to pass through their system. Ingesting cob could lead to physical blockages and even tearing of the stomach lining.

7. Cooked Bones

Speaking of tearing the stomach, cooked bones are extremely dangerous for your dog to eat. While they are not actually "toxic" or "poisonous," we believe they belong on this list as something you should absolutely never feed your dog. Cooked chicken, beef, or pork bones can splinter when chewed and tear the lining of your dog's throat, intestine, and stomach. Further, cooked bone marrow can be hard for dogs to digest.

A good alternative to this would be rawhide or vet-approved dog bone treats.

8. Alcohol

Even in small doses, alcohol can have a great impact on your dog's health. The components of alcohol can cause sickness and diarrhea in dogs, as well as central nervous system damage. So make sure you aren't giving your pooch a piece of that steak if you cooked it with red wine!

What else do I avoid feeding my dog?

When it comes down to it, the best way to ensure you aren't feeding your pooch something toxic is to ask your veterinarian. Before making it habit to feed your dog things from your plate, get clearance from your vet! Not to mention, your dog's age, breed, and size can impact which foods are okay to feed them and which ones aren't.

Remember, it never hurts to ask, and it's better not to give your dog a treat from your plate until you're absolutely certain it is safe to do so.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Do you think your dog ingested something potentially toxic? Contact our Memphis veterinarians immediately.

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