Human food is safe for humans, but certain foods should not be given to your dog, even as a small treat.
Even though dogs too are mammals, their digestion has been created to eat a smaller variety of foods — meat being their primary diet.
The food we can eat is metabolized differently in dogs. For example, dogs don’t have many of the digestive enzymes we have. They also have a smaller body and don’t deal well with compounds that we can breakdown readily, such as those found in alcoholic drinks, vegetables, grains, and plants — dogs would never had eaten these in the wild.
This video points out the foods you probably have in your house that need to be strictly off-limits to your dog:
Worst human foods for dogs
- Avocado contains persin, a highly toxic substance for most animals. One bite can potentially cause stomach pain, and vomiting.
- Grapes and sultanas can cause kidney failure in dogs.
- Caffeine found in chocolate, tea and coffee, upsets the central nervous system, and heart. A lethal dose of caffeine may not be as much as you imagine.
- Macadamia nuts can interfere with your dogs locomotary movements. For example, your dog may appear drunk or, otherwise, he could experience acute joint pain, and swelling.
- Dairy products, such as milk or ice cream cause an upset tummy, leading to diarrhoea, and vomiting. Half of all dogs tested are lactose intolerant, so why risk it? There is pet-milk on the market, which is digestible to dogs. However, water is the best drink.
- Garlic, and onion, containing sulfoxides, and disulfides are both damaging to blood cells, potentially leading to anemia.
- Alcohol, and other recreational drugs, such as marijuana are extremely toxic to dogs. Dogs bodies cannot — in any way — deal with these toxins. Reactions include coordination problems, coma, and in worse cases death. Be honest with the vet, if your dog has consumed an illegal drug. You can ask the vet to honor your right to confidentiality.
- Xylitol, an ingredient in sugar-free confectionary, such as gum, and sweets also comes in the form of granules for cooking — and is one of the most dangerous household foods for dogs. A small amount can bring on seizures, and death.
- Chocolate contains theobromine which is lethal to dogs. Chocolate poisoning is the most common complaint — who would have guessed?
- Bread dough contains yeast, which when allowed to ferment in a warm environment, such as your dog’s stomach, produces poisonous alcohol.
- Hops, either cooked or raw, set off a reaction whereby the dog develops a fever, leading to organ failure, and seizures.
- Moldy foods may harbor tremorgenic mycotoxins, which may cause tremors, and convulsions in your dog, which could end-up being fatal.
- Apple, and pear cores contain cyanide, which when ingested can cause dizziness, hyperventilation, collapse, and possibly coma.
Feed your dog a healthy diet
In addition to keeping human food out of your dog’s diet, foods such as raw meats, fish, and eggs need to be fresh and safe to eat. When allowed to spoil, these fresh foods may breed dangerous levels of pathogenic bacteria, which can make your dog very ill.
If you want to feed your dog a little fresh meat, visit your local butcher to buy some fresh bones to supplement dry food. Or, fresh pet mince can also be bought from your supermarket.
Dry food is the best, and most cost-effective food to feed your dog.
It doesn’t spoil if kept dry, and good brands contain all the necessary ingredients for health, and development.
For treats, don’t offer your dog chips, bread, biscuits, cheese or chocolate, as these are unhealthy foods. Dog treats are inexpensive, such as dried liver, and can be found in a pet store.
If you suspect your dog has gotten into your pantry, car or handbag, and eaten something from this list, contact your vet immediately.