Hi stranger! Signing up for MypetMD is easy, free and puts the most relevant content at your fingertips.

Get Instant Access To

  • 24/7 alerts for pet-related recalls

  • Your own library of articles, blogs, and favorite pet names

  • Tools designed to keep your pets happy and healthy



or Connect with Facebook

By joining petMD, you agree to the Privacy Policy.

Select the type of pet you have to find

essential nutrition advice for your pet.


5 Foods That Could Kill Your Dog

Image: chaoss / via Shutterstock
Image: n7atal7i / via Shutterstock
Image: GVictoria / via Shutterstock
Image: MichaelJayBerlin / via Shutterstock
Image: ruzanna / via Shutterstock
Image: Gayvoronskaya_Yana / via Shutterstock

Advertisement

Your slideshow will start shortly.


Dangerous Foods

By Jessica Remitz

 

While we may consider dogs to be members of our family, treating them as such at mealtimes can cause more injury to them than just spoiling their dinners. Here’s a look at the five most dangerous foods for your dog, how they affect their bodies, and what to do in case of an emergency.

1. Chocolate

Unlike their feline friends, most dogs don’t have an “off” button when it comes to finding food, says Dr. Tina Wismer, medical director at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. While the amount of chocolate your dog consumes will also determine the toxicity, symptoms of chocolate poisoning to look out for can include vomiting, diarrhea and seizures. According to Dr. Wismer, the darker the chocolate is, the more serious the poisoning can be — making baker’s chocolate and cocoa powder more dangerous than milk chocolate.

 

Check out petMD's Dog Chocolate Poisoning Meter.

2. Xylitol

An artificial sweetener found in sugarless gum, candy, and baked goods, Xylitol may be approved for people but can cause liver damage and a life-threatening drop in blood sugar in dogs. According to the Pet Poison Helpline (PPH), a 10-pound dog would only need to eat a single piece of sugar-free gum to reach a potentially toxic dose. Low blood sugar can develop within 10 to 15 minutes of ingestion, in addition to vomiting and loss of coordination, says PPH.

3. Grapes

Both grapes and raisins can cause kidney failure in dogs, with vomiting, increased urination and increased thirst potential symptoms of poisoning. Help your dog stay out of trouble by keeping grapes and raisins out of reach at all times. Dr. Wismer also recommends talking to your vet about a list of things you and your children should or shouldn’t feed your pets.

 

“Pets have different dietary requirements and metabolize things differently [than people],” says Dr. Wismer. “Dogs have amazing noses and when it comes to food, they can get themselves in trouble.”

4. Onions/Garlic

If eaten in large amounts, onions and garlic can cause the destruction of red blood cells and lead to anemia in dogs, Dr. Wismer says. Although the size of the dose determines the level of poisoning, lethargy and a reduced appetite can be symptoms of a toxic reaction. The sooner you diagnose potential poisoning the better, so if they’re acting strangely don’t hesitate to call your veterinarian.

5. Alcohol

Beer, wine and cocktails aside, alcohol can also be found in desserts and can be created in your dog’s stomach if they ingest homemade or store bought yeast dough used in making bread, rolls and pizza. Even small amount of alcohol, both ingested through alcoholic beverages and produced in the stomach, can be life threatening, making it important to call your vet before you notice any serious poisoning symptoms like seizures. Dr. Wismer suggests teaching your dogs how to “leave” or “drop” things to prevent them from consuming dangerous foods both at home and outdoors and training young children not to leave things where dogs can get into them.

 

If you believe you pet has ingested a toxic substance, call the ASPCA animal poison control center at 888-426-4435 or the Pet Poison Hotline at 855-213-6680. Both phone lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

1/6
  • Lifetime Credits:
  • Today's Credits:
Hurry Before All Seats are Taken!
Enroll
Be an A++ Pet Parent! Take fun & free courses to earn badges & certifications. Choose a course»


Comments  23

Leave Comment
  • 03/10/2014 01:50am

    The slideshow doesn't work for me, I've been trying occasionally for more than an hour. I've tried with Java Script on and off, doesn't work either way. I'm using Firefox 27.0.1 with Windows XP Home Edition, version 2002 Service Pack 3.
    Any suggestions?

  • 04/29/2014 04:44am

    Same here. Maybe it's the outdated OS i'm using (win xp) Think it should work anyway...:(

  • 07/20/2014 02:21am

    For those who cannot see, the 5 foods listed are:Chocolate, Xylitol, Grapes, Onions/Garlic, Alcohol


    Here are some more: http://www.everythingpom.com/dangerous-foods-for-dogs/

    I actually have a friend who's dog ate grapes and they had to rush her dog to the vet! Beware!

  • 07/30/2014 12:19pm

    grapes would also include dried grapes, aka raisins

  • 09/13/2014 01:28am

    actually garlic is very healthy for dogs. idk where yall got yalls resources but garlic wont kill ur dog. infact giving garlic to ur dog help with flies and ticks. most dogfoods have garlic in it

  • 10/15/2014 05:59pm

    It may be your video card, I am running XP PRO SPC, but Firefox 32.0 and I have no problem at all viewing the slide show. try updating firefox first and see if that helps

  • 11/24/2014 08:44pm

    Worked ok with Explorer but not with Chrome

  • Garlic is good!
    04/08/2014 04:52am

    Onion is not good for dogs, agreed. But garlic is, in small amounts (half a glove a day for small/medium dog, whole glove for large dog). Garlic has a long list of health benefits, helps to fight (Toxocara canina) 'worms' and repels fleas. Garlic is a natural antibiotic, antioxidant, anti-allergen, antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-protozoan, anti-viral and anti-carcinogen. Garlic can also be used topically to treat ear mite infestation and ear infections. I make my own dog food and include small amounts of garlic. I have a very healthy, happy dog who hasn't seen a vet except for her microchip & neutering.

  • 09/25/2014 05:12am

    Are u sure. Can I give it to my pet dogs? Look , please be very sure !

  • 10/08/2014 02:10pm

    Ur dog can have garlic. Just make sure to use garlic powder. the cloves are indeed harmful to them if injested, but in powder form, ur dogs will be just fine.

  • 10/08/2014 02:12pm

    actually cloves are harmful for dogs, but garlic is healthy for them in powder form. the dogs digestive system cant digest garlic cloves

  • Are you serious?!?
    06/20/2014 10:38am

    Why in the world would you post a picture of a pup eating a hot dog under the heading "5 foods that will KILL your dog"?!? Now I know where NOT to go for pet advice!

  • 06/20/2014 12:08pm

    One hotdog isn't going to kill a dog, (unless he chokes on it and that's highly unlikely). A regular diet of such trash is certainly unhealthy for any pet or human, but one occasionally is much different than a candy bar, a plate of sauteed onions or chicken jerky from China.

  • 06/20/2014 06:15pm

    My very point.

  • 06/20/2014 06:32pm

    Sorry about that, I thought you meant 'why would they show a picture of something harmful'. Hot dogs are almost that bad, but not quite.
    What they're doing is called sensationalism, it's a ploy to get people to ha a W.T.F. moment then check it out to see what's up.
    I guess it worked on you and me both.

  • 06/20/2014 06:30pm

    Not a problem... no need for an apology, but thanks. It's often hard to figure out what people mean in their posts.

  • 10/15/2014 06:06pm

    I have a dog that eats anything that hits the floor, and she is healthy as can be, in fact, when we travel, I used hot dogs, sliced, for treats. Way healthier than those packaged treats from China. Now she doesn't get a whole onion, but she does eat onions, raw and cooked, garlic powder in her food (agreed, great for fleas and ticks, and better than chemicals), I try not to let her get to the grapes, but she has on occassion stolen some. She eats milk chocolate and all without any adverse effects. So a lot of this may depend on each individual dog. They are as unique as people, and what bothers one may have no effect on another. The only thing she has not ever had is sugar free gum. Even I can't have that. Makes me sick.

  • 08/29/2014 10:30pm

    Good grief! It does not state anything about a hot-dog poisoning, harming or anything else for that matter. It's only the initial picture of a dog eating a hot-dog AND cold-cuts! ....Deep breath there, Jim Dandy & Oggyyyy.

  • 08/30/2014 12:06am

    SnoDov, I don't need to breathe deeply, I was just pointing out that hot dogs aren't immediately dangerous to dogs

  • Comment to the garlic.
    09/13/2014 01:35am

    GArlic will not kill ur dogs people. Garlic is actually very healthy for them, It provides a 24-hour shield against fleas, ticks, mosquitoes, gnats, etc, its Safe, effective alternative to chemical products.Its one of the world's most powerful antioxidant foods. it Promotes friendly bacteria in the digestive tract. It Provides four times more organic sulfur than any other food. It contains natural MSM and it stimulates immunity - antibacterial, anti fungal, antiviral, & anti-parasitic*

  • 09/13/2014 01:37am

    also, if dogs cant eat hotdogs then they might as well not eat wet dogfood.

  • Typical "Slideshow"
    11/06/2014 10:14am

    Give me a break. This is typical Internet "slideshow" shrieking designed to get you to flip through five pages of ads to generate revenue. Garlic "killing" a dog? These are animals that will eat their own vomit and poop, and you're telling me that garlic and onions will "kill" them? How much as we talking about? A clove? A bulb? A 50 pound sack force-fed with a wooden pole? The internet is a big place and there is plenty of room to post accurate, complete information. Quit insulting us with slideshows designed only to generate mouse clicks.

  • 11/06/2014 10:27am

    Hi Jose.

    We get our information from several sources before we publish it, and we always have it checked by veterinarians. Just as with people, animals can have less or more sensitivity to foods than average; think people and peanut allergies.

    What you see here is, "If eaten in large amounts, onions and garlic can cause the destruction of red blood cells and lead to anemia in dogs..."

    Note that the description is for large amounts. A large amount is relative to the dog's size, health status, and sensitivity.

    Here are some other sites - ad-free sites - that have information on garlic and onion toxicity:

    ASPCA: All close members of the onion family (shallots, onions, garlic, scallions, etc.) contain compounds that can damage dogs’ red blood cells if ingested in sufficient quantities. A rule of thumb is “the stronger it is, the more toxic it is.” Garlic tends to be more toxic than onions, on an ounce-for-ounce basis.
    https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/virtual-pet-behaviorist/dog-behavior/foods-are-hazardous-dogs

    Pet Poison Helpline: Onions, garlic, chives, and leeks are of the Allium family, and are poisonous to both dogs and cats. Garlic is considered to be about five times as potent as onions. Certain breeds and species seem to be more sensitive. Onion and garlic poisoning results in oxidative damage to the red blood cells (making the red blood cells more likely to rupture) and gastroenteritis (e.g., nausea, oral irritation, drooling, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea). Other clinical signs of anemia may be seen, and include lethargy, pale gums, an elevated heart rate, an increased respiratory rate, weakness, exercise intolerance, and collapse.
    http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/poison/garlic/

 
MORE FROM PETMD.COM