10 human foods you definitely shouldn’t feed your dog (and what to give them instead)

February 22, 2018

Food is an international language of love so it’s totally natural that we sometimes find ourselves sharing a plate with our pups. Food is love, right? Well, maybe not.

Many of the foods we consider healthy for us can actually be dangerous and even fatal for our canine friends. Here are our top 10 do’s and don’ts when it comes to dinner time with your doggo.

1. Macadamia nuts

Steer clear! Macadamia nut consumption in dogs can lead to a bunch of health issues and even be fatal. Protect your pet from paralysis, vomiting, elevated heart rate and fever by keeping them out of your macadamia stash.

Alternative: Peas or beans are a tasty, fresh snack for pups and a great source of vitamins C and K.

2.  Grapes, sultanas and currants

You may think all fruits and vegetables are safe for our fluffy little pals, but many are not. Grapes and their dried variations are actually poisonous for dogs and can cause vomiting, sluggishness and even kidney failure.

Alternative: Cooked sweet potato or pumpkin will provide your pooches with the sweet fix they crave with the added bonuses of beta carotene and good digestion.

3. Avocado

While the holy matrimony of avocado and toast is apparently now a staple in Aussie diets, sadly our puppers can’t join in the fun. Avocado contains a toxin called persin, which is considered poisonous for dogs and other animals.

Alternative: Another creamy option is peanut butter. Containing protein, Vitamin B and heart healthy fats, this is a treat you can both enjoy.

4. Chewing gum

Many chewies contain xylitol, an artificial sweetener that is toxic for dogs (watch out for peanut butter too, as it also sometimes contains xylitol). Symptoms of xylitol poisoning can include seizures, vomiting and a loss of coordination. To keep your dog happy and healthy, you may just have to put up with eternal morning breath. The true price of love.

Alternative: Parsley – not only is it super simple to grow yourself, parsley also is a great breath freshener for our furry children.

5. Peaches and plums

With stone fruit season in full swing, be on alert. The seeds of both peaches and plums contain cyanide and are choking and digestive hazard for hounds. Keep these stone fruit away from those greedy paws.

Alternative: Apples. The fibre and A and C vitamins found in apples will provide your pet with a healthy digestive system and clean chompers. Make sure to take the seeds and core out to avoid choking. An apple a day keeps the doctor away, after all.  

6. Onion and garlic

The foundation of many human meals, onion and garlic are a dangerous addition when it comes to canine diets. They attack the red blood cells in the body and can make your beloved pooch anaemic.

Alternative: Porridge is a great fibre-rich choice for any woofer with a fondness for human food. But make sure you avoid adding the 10 tablespoons of sugar you might plonk into your own bowl! 

7. Ice cream

Like humans, our loyal companions are susceptible to lactose intolerances. If exposed, they can suffer from digestive issues and diarrhoea, so rule this cold indulgence out.

Alternative: Frozen berries make for a guilt-free post dinner pleasure for pups and are rich in antioxidants and fibre. Blend them up to make a pooch-friendly smoothie bowl (millennials rejoice).

8. Cooked bones

Many of us believe left-over carcasses make for a delicious doggy dinner, but don’t be fooled. Cooked bones that are small and sharp can cause punctures in the digestive tracts of dogs.

Alternative: Raw bones wider than the width of your three middle fingers will make for a hazard-free puppy feast. (And shout out to Dennis from Arkaba Meats for the pro-bono bone in our photo below.)

 9. Coffee

Dog feeling lethargic? Lacking in energy? Don’t turn to coffee. The caffeine in coffee will send your hound into a tail spin with restlessness, muscle twitching and fast breathing. In worst-case scenarios, coffee can even be fatal.

Alternative: Next time you think your fluffer needs a pick me up, try a banana. Just like for humans, bananas are a safe source of potassium, fibre and energy, and are also brilliant for heart health.

10. Alcohol

Our pooches weren’t designed to process booze in the way we are, so keep your rebellious puppies away from all things beer, wine and spirits related. Alcohol consumption, as well as the yeast in many of these beverages, are toxic and can be lethal.

Alternative: Cold water or ice cubes will give doggo that refreshing ‘ahhhh’ moment, without any of the dangers of alcohol.

So now you know, sadly not all of our tasty human treats are so suitable for our beloved beasts. Ensuring their insides are as beautiful as their outsides is a tip-top priority, so if you and your pup tried and loved any of our suggestions, let us know in the comments below!

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15 thoughts on “10 human foods you definitely shouldn’t feed your dog (and what to give them instead)”

  1. Rosalie Apostolides

    Thankyou will share

  2. Elaine McGregor

    Thank you for this awesome information. I believe I would have killed my puppy over a short period of time.
    Thank you so much.

  3. Helen McHugh

    What about sweet potato

    1. Hi Helen, cooked sweet potato is actually safe for dogs to eat and a great source of nutrients 🙂

  4. Tam

    For all these years I thought the number one no no to feed a dog with chocolate but yet you don’t even have that on the list?

    1. Hi Tam, this list includes some of the lesser known foods that aren’t safe for consumption by our canine friends. Since chocolate is already a well known no-no for dogs, we left the spots in this list for poisonous foods that may be a bit more unexpected. Thanks!

  5. Colleen

    Wow! cyanide in stones in fruit! Would that include DATE STONES? My girl has to stay with my friend whilst I’m undergoing treatment and she’s hoeing into the date stones there… copying her other dog that just chews at them but doesn’t swallow! She has vomited them up before, but it’s become a habit and the date palms are huge and we can’t reach to cut off the massive fruit bunches.

    1. Hi Colleen, we’d advise that you remove date stones from your dog’s reach, since these also pose a choking hazard. Thank you.

  6. Lyn C

    I’m so glad I read this!! I had given my dog a corner of my toast with avocado in the past – no more. My boy loves apple, but not banana and he loves munching on ice cubes ????

  7. Viv Williams

    Fantastic information thank you.
    What about peas,broccoli,corn,cauliflower,
    cabbage ?

  8. Shaaron Yale

    It would be really helpful when warning people of the dangers of these foods being ingested by our pets to also include quantities needed to cause immediate harm. Whilst most owners will avoid giving these foods to their pets it is sometimes an accident or unavoidable. For example I caught my son giving his Staffy grapes as a treat when training him. I told him that grapes are toxic to dogs. My son called the vet who suggested he get the dog to him STAT. $300 later, forced vomiting through drugs and one very unhappy dog and stressed out guilty son we thought we had saved his life only to find out a couple of days later that it would take more than 5 grapes to cause any harm or even upset tummy to the dog! Yes these warnings of toxic foods should be taken seriously but the correct information on quantities = harm should also be taken seriously.

    1. Hi Shaaron, we’re sorry to hear your family’s Staffy has had to go through such a stressful ordeal and hope he is on the mend. Sadly there is no measurement on how many grapes are safe for a dog to consume. The tolerance can vary between dogs – it doesn’t discriminate between weight or size either. We recommend avoiding grapes altogether.

  9. Kylie

    My dog eats the avocadoes that fall off our backyard tree. We stop her if we see her but we can’t watch her all the time. I’m worried now

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