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8 Dangerous Foods for Your Dog

Updated on April 23, 2017


The edible part of the avocado is actually fine for dogs, but the rest of it can be dangerous. The skin and plant contain a chemical called persin that can cause significant respiratory problems for dogs, which in the worst cases can lead to death. The other part of the avocado you should be concerned about is the pit - it's not poisonous, but it can be just the right size to get stuck in your dog's throat.

If you're going to feed your dog avocado, make sure you're only giving him the edible part!


Grapes are one of the most toxic things that a dog can eat. Interestingly, they are only toxic to some dogs, but you should not try to find out if your dog is allergic - if she is, eating even a few grapes could cause death. Stay away from grape juice as well!


Raisins are, of course, just dehydrated grapes, so they have all the same things in them and are thus dangerous to some dogs. Raising are actually significantly worse than grapes because the fact that they are dehydrated means that they are even more concentrated than grapes.

Coffee, Tea and Soda

Caffeine can be a dangerous substance for humans if you consume too much, and the same is very much the case for dogs. A dog who has ingested caffeine can show many of the same symptoms of a human - shakiness, dehydration, and increased heart rate, for example. However, the effects can be much more severe, especially on small dogs.


Most people aren't aware that tomatoes can be dangerous, because ripe tomatoes are actually fine. Unripe, green tomatoes and the leafy part of the tomato plant, however, can be toxic to dogs. Consuming these can cause your dog to have stomach problems and general weakness.


Chocolate is probably the substance best known for being dangerous to dogs, and that's a good thing, because it should definitely be kept away from them! If eaten in small amounts it can cause gastrointestinal distress, but in bigger quantities it can cause internal bleeding, muscle tremors, seizures, heart attacks and death. The reason is because the chemical theobromine, which humans can process easily, can build up in dogs' systems to toxic levels very quickly.

Macadamia Nuts

Scientists and vets aren't quite sure which compound in macadamia nuts is toxic to dogs, but there's more than enough evidence out there to make it clear that they should be kept away from your pooch at all times. Unlike some other substances on this list, they're unlikely to kill your dog but will definitely cause stomach problems and potentially other general distress.


Onions are part of the Allium family of plants and are toxic to dogs. The chemicals in these plants cause problems for the red blood cells of dogs - since those carry oxygen, that can be extremely dangerous. Worse, consuming these can even cause anemia in dogs. The other well known food in this family is garlic, so watch out for that as well.

Go to the Vet!

So what should you do if your dog has eaten something that you think might be dangerous? Get right to the vet! You shouldn't wait for symptoms to show up - if something bad is going to happen you absolutely want to get your pet treatment as soon as possible. The early issues are detected, the more time the doctor has to deal with them, and if you can get to the vet immediately you may save your pet a lot of discomfort as well.

Even responsible pet owners can leave dangerous foods out - if your dog eats one, don't get mad at yourself, just make sure that you're more careful in the future. This is doubly try if you have a very smart pooch like a husky or a shepherd that's got the brains and the size to sneak treats off the counter or elsewhere. In these cases, if you know your dog will start scavenging for food as soon as your turn your back, make sure everything dangerous is stored securely!

If you're careful and you train your dog to obey important commands like "drop it" then you should be able to have a safe, healthy pet household.


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    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 7 months ago from Arkansas, USA

      Great list--I've heard about all of these! I've heard that even small amounts of onions cooked in foods are dangerous to dogs. I always forget what kinds of nuts are dangerous for dogs, so I avoid all of them. Seems like walnuts, maybe? And maybe some other ones? Thanks for this hub. Great information!