6 Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Dog

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Karthik is a writer with a special interest in animals, especially the unique qualities of various cat and dog breeds.

6 Foods That Are Bad for Your Dog

When it comes to pets, especially dogs and cats, there are certain foods that they can digest and some foods that may be potentially poisonous. Most dog owners know what foods they may and may not feed their dogs. However, there may be many people who may have newly become dog owners or may not yet know what they can feed their dogs. If you are one of them, here is a list of six foods to avoid, as they may potentially kill your dear pet.

1. Caffeine

Caffeine in any form is a strict no for your dog. Caffeine can be found in coffee, tea, coffee beans, caffeine pills, and even chocolate. Caffeine can easily damage your dog’s kidney, heart, lungs, and central nervous system. Typical symptoms include hyperactivity, vomiting, and restlessness, followed by increased heart rate, panting, muscle tremors, drunken gait, and convulsions.

2. Chocolate and Cocoa

Chocolate in any form is as dangerous to a dog as caffeine. The darker the chocolate, the higher the danger to the dog. The main reason chocolate is poisonous is cocoa. Cocoa ingestion in any form can prove fatal to a dog. The chemical theobromine present in cocoa can cause damage to the kidneys, heart, lungs, and the central nervous system. It is not only dark chocolate that causes damage but also milk chocolate. Typical symptoms include seizures, tremors, and over-excitement, diarrhea, vomiting, hyperthermia, abnormal heart rhythm, and coma.

3. Onions, Garlic, and Leeks

Some of the foods to avoid for dogs include vegetables such as garlic, leeks, onions, and chives. These vegetables can cause Heinz body anemia, a type of hemolytic anemia where red blood cells are destroyed. This may be followed by kidney damage. Some other symptoms may involve rapid heart rate, pale gums, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and bloody urine.

4. Bread Dough

Bread dough or any kind of bakery dough easily makes your dog’s stomach swell. This can cause your dog’s abdomen to stretch, which can cause severe pain. In addition, when the yeast ferments, it produces ethanol, which is very toxic for your dog. It may cause damage to the central nervous system as well as the respiratory system. Some symptoms include depression, sedation, weakness, hypothermia, and drunken gait.

5. Macadamia Nuts

These nuts may not be fatal, but they do cause illness in your dog. The mechanism of toxicity is yet unknown. A handful of these nuts can cause adverse effects in your pet dog. Some symptoms are weakness, depression, vomiting, muscle/joint pain, joint swelling, and a drunken gait.

6. Currants, Grapes, and Raisins

Fruits such as grapes, raisins, or black currants are good for humans but not dogs. In dogs, these fruits can cause irreparable damage to the kidneys, possibly causing death. Although the exact toxic dose is not yet established, even 4–5 raisins or grapes can prove poisonous for dogs. If ingested, your dog may show symptoms such as loss of appetite, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, weakness, drunken gait, and decreased urine production (leading to complete lack of urine production).

Some other foods to avoid for dogs include fatty foods, artificial sweeteners, ice cream, alcohol, and dairy products. You can, however, give your dog vegetables such as carrots, green beans, apples, bananas, oranges, and watermelons. You can also feed your dog lean meats and regular dog foods. Make sure that you feed your dog only those foods that give them the required nutrition and safe for them.

Questions & Answers

Question: Can you feed a dog bananas?

Answer: Yes. You can feed your pet buddy bananas in moderation. They are good in potassium, Vitamin B6 and C. Bananas are also high in fiber and magnesium. So, bananas are good for your dog. However, avoid feeding him/her banana peel. While it is not toxic, it is difficult to digest.

L Sarhan from Huntsville, Alabama, USA on September 23, 2014:

We actually prepare our dogs food instead of buying dog food. For anyone who makes their own dog food, knowing what foods and seasonings dogs cannot have is just as essential as knowing what foods that are healthy for dogs to consume.

Well done!

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on June 11, 2013:

Thanks for sharing epbooks and Johnn65 :)

Elizabeth Parker from Las Vegas, NV on June 11, 2013:

Very informative hub. I was surprised at how many people still feed grapes to their dogs. One woman in the supermarket was buying grapes FOR her dog! I promptly told her how dangerous they were. My dogs love carrots- great alternative to a dog bone every once in a while and less calories for them. Voted up and useful!

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on March 30, 2013:

Thanks a lot Ruth :)

Ruth Lanham on March 30, 2013:

Great hub...voted up and useful.

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on February 17, 2013:

peachpurple: Thanks a lot and I agree with your comment.

peachy from Home Sweet Home on February 16, 2013:

When i was young, my mom fed our dog eggs with rice. Sometimes, if he is lucky, our dog might get sardine fish mix with rice. He never had dog biscuits or dog food. Just ate whatever we ate, not left-over food. That's unkind. Glad to know some food that dog shouldn't eat. Voted useful

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on February 15, 2013:

nerdmama7 : True :) Good that you are already doing some research. Chocolates and onions (and the related family) are indeed extremely bad for dogs. All the best for you and your new family member :)

Nerd Mama from USA on February 14, 2013:

Wow. You only hear about dogs having a bad reaction to chocolate. I never knew about any of these! I don't have a dog currently, but want to have a puppy in the next year, so I'm doing my research. I know a lot of people who feed their dogs ANYTHING, and I will have to warn them, because there are some seriously dangerous effects.

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on January 31, 2013:

blueeyes: Thanks for commenting. You can also feed him some dog food that is available in your local store :)

blueeyes on January 31, 2013:

Thank you all so very much!!! I just hope I haven't already made him sick with (ol roy Dogfood) Am changing his diet to vegtables and going to get him some natural good protien food..May cook him some stuff too!!

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on December 30, 2012:

WiccanSage: Yup, I too didn't know many of these stuff. Heard from a couple of my friends and did some research :)

Mackenzie Sage Wright on December 29, 2012:

This is great to know. I knew not to give my dog anything in the onion family, chocolate or grapes/raisins but I did not know about the rest. Thanks so much, very informative.

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on December 24, 2012:

thanks a lot for sharing klarawieck :)

klarawieck on December 24, 2012:

Thanks for the great advice! I make home-cooked meals for my 12 year old dog. She had a bladder stone which had to be surgically removed about five or six years ago. It turned out to be 100% magnesium. Since then I tried different brands of dog foods that didn't contain magnesium, and after a while I realized that she was better off eating fresh home-cooked meals. I supplement her meals with a few drops of cod-fish oil which is important for every dog's diet.

This is a great article, and I'm sure a lot of pet owners will find this information useful.

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on August 23, 2012:

thanks a lot for sharing that :)

The Writers Dog on August 23, 2012:

A vet friend tells me that basically you can feed them any veggie provided it is seed free. Like Mum's, my dog gets peas, carrots, potato and the odd piece of broccoli.

Things like tomato (although a fruit) are also a definite no go for dogs because of the seeds.

Karthik Kashyap (author) from India on August 23, 2012:

I usually never fed my dog any veggies. But would love to know about what other veggies you could feed him :)

The Writers Dog on August 23, 2012:

My chocolate Lab loves his vegetables. His favourite is mashed potato, but is also partial to broccoli and carrot.

6 Foods To Avoid Feeding Your Dog This Christmas

That time of year is here, where we are a bit more lenient with what we consume, we begin to indulge sometimes completely forgetting about the word diet so that we can eat all of the festive favorites for the season. These include selection boxes, pigs in blankets, mince pies, roast dinners, hot chocolate, and the list can continue on and on. It also appears to be the time of year when we forget that dogs aren’t supposed to eat a lot of the things we start to feed them maybe because they hang around the dinner table or there are the scraps from leftovers, whatever the reason some of these foods aren’t safe or the dog does not benefit in any way from consuming it. While the odd treat is harmless to the dog, we must still be mindful that some foods for humans can be fatal for a dog or wreak havoc on their body functions.

How Bad Are They?

As a general rule of thumb, owners should avoid dog food formulas with ingredients they wouldn't consume themselves.

Who wants to eat dead, dying, or diseased meats? This particular ingredient is especially harmful to dogs because owners will never know the exact source.

High-quality formulas contain all-natural protein from healthy animals. However, 4-D meats are often full of chemicals, hormones, steroids, and much more.

Not only that but these rejected and discarded meats may harbor potentially deadly extras. For example, sick and dying animals can contain all kinds of diseases.

The same goes for roadkill that may harbor a slew of bacteria and parasites.

Even seemingly innocuous sources like expired meat from a grocery store may be thrown into the formula without even being removed from the package. Because of the uncertainty with 4-D meats, dogs can be exposed to a lot of harm.

Steroids, insecticides, and growth hormones can affect the way they develop and grow while chemicals and parasites can lead to a variety of health issues like cancer.

Corn and grains are bad for dogs because they aren't built to consume these ingredients on a regular basis. Dogs are carnivores through and through. They don't have the right teeth to grind up grains.

As a result, many dogs can develop digestion problems. The influx of GMOs, insecticides, and mold on corn and grain products can also lead to cancer and allergy issues.

When it comes to synthetic ingredients like dyes and preservatives , many options have been found to do irreparable harm. Many dyes have high toxicity levels that can cause pulmonary problems and death. Some preservatives are carcinogenic and known to cause organ failure, stomach irritation, tooth decay, and more.

Natural Remedies For Anal Gland Troubles

If you try the above steps and your dog is still scooting and painful, then it’s time to pull out the heavy artillery!

Calendula Compress For Anal Gland Relief In Dogs

First, you can relieve the irritation with this soothing compress.

  • Put a teaspoon of sea salt in a cup of warm water.
  • Add 8 drops of calendula tincture to the mixture.
  • Pour it onto a cloth and hold it against the inflamed area until the cloth is cool.
  • Repeat the process every hour until the swelling goes down or until the glands open and drain.

Homeopathy For Your Dog’s Anal Glands

There’s an excellent homeopathic remedy for anal glands. It’s called Silica (or Silicea). Use it when your dog needs a little help emptying his glands.

Silica helps the body expel foreign objects … and fluids like pus and excretions. You can buy Silica 6C at most health stores or on Amazon.

Give your dog the Silica 6C twice a day for 2 to 7 days. Here’s how to do it…

  • Try not to touch the pellets with your hands as that can spoil the remedy.
  • Put about 3-5 pellets into a small glass of filtered or spring water (don’t use unfiltered tap water).
  • Stir vigorously with a spoon for about 20-30 seconds,
  • Use a glass dropper or teaspoon to place some of the liquid on your dog’s gums twice a day.
  • Stir the liquid again before every dose.
  • Make sure he doesn’t eat for 20 minutes before and after dosing.
  • If your dog is really freaked out that you’re chasing him around with the spoon … you can put the pellets in his water bowl (stir well and use filtered water). This will work just as well. as long as you don’t have other dogs who use the same bowl.

Feed A Fiber Broth

Fiber broth acts like a colon cleanse and can help with your dog’s anal gland problems. The psyllium creates bulk to stimulate better muscle movement in the intestines. Phivo Christodoulou shared this great fiber broth recipe you can make at home.

Please read ALL the directions before feeding. It’s important to follow this recipe carefully. Psyllium husk sucks moisture out of the digestive tract … and can cause constipation if over-fed.


  • 1 cup of bone broth
  • 2 tbsp psyllium husks


  • Heat bone broth and add psyllium husks
  • Mix with a spoon until it’s a jelly-like consistency (should only take a few minutes)
  • Allow mixture to cool
  • Feed as a meal replacement every other meal for 1-2 days until stools are firmer or until you can confirm the anal glands have expressed

How Much To Feed Your Dog

Miniature or small breed dogs … 1/5 to 1/4 cup per meal
Medium to large breed dogs … ½ to ¾ cup per meal
Giant breed dogs … 1 cup per meal

In a pinch, you can also use water instead of bone broth. The bone broth is for extra nourishment. It also helps add flavor to encourage your dog to eat the broth. If your dog will drink a mixture made with water that’s fine too.

If your dog’s poops are still not large enough, you can slowly increase the amount of psyllium husk.

And there’s one more thing…

Supervise your dog during poop time while you’re feeding the fiber broth. This is gross, but some dogs may need help getting their poop out at first. If he’s having trouble, place your hand in a clean poop bag and pull the poop out. Your hands won’t get dirty so grit your teeth, hold your nose, and give your dog a hand if he needs it.

6 Easter Foods to Avoid Sharing with Pets

Easter is coming up, and much of the day is spent around food, including baskets full of goodies. You may be wondering if you should share your Easter dinner with your pet. While some traditional Easter foods are non-toxic to dogs and cats, they can still cause an upset stomach and lead to diarrhea and vomiting. Here’s a list of commonly consumed foods at Easter and whether or not to share them with your pet.

Easter ham is perhaps the most traditional part of Easter dinner. Ham is high in calories and fat which can cause diarrhea in dogs and cats and also lead to life-threatening pancreatitis in dogs. High calorie foods also cause weight gain in pets. Just 3 ounces of ham is over 25% of the daily calories needed in a 25 pound dog.

2. Mashed Potatoes

Although potatoes are typically harmless in dogs, make sure that your mashed potatoes are not made with any onions or garlic which are toxic to dogs. The butter and milk that are added to mashed potatoes can cause diarrhea in your pets because dogs are often lactose intolerant and cats can be as well.

3. Green Beans

These delicious and nutritious vegetables are safe and healthy for dogs and cats. Just make sure if you are feeding them to your dog that they are not mixed with any flavor additives such as garlic or onions! Also, if you add butter or oil to your green beans, it’s best not to feed them to pets as these can cause diarrhea.

4. Deviled Eggs and Hardboiled Eggs

Most families have an abundance of hardboiled eggs at Easter. Eggs on their own are usually safe for dogs and cats if they are cooked, but they may cause upset stomach in some animals. As with the mashed potatoes and green beans, be aware of the ingredients used to make the deviled eggs and if garlic or onion were used do not share these with your pets.

5. Carrot Cake

Since the Easter bunny loves carrots, many families will whip up a carrot cake for Easter. While carrot cake sounds healthy, it packs a lot of calories and sugar in each slice. It’s best to not feed this dessert to your pet due to the large amount of fat and sugar it contains. In addition, cream cheese icing can sometimes make dogs and cats sick due to the lactose in the cream cheese.

6. Chocolate Bunnies

Easter is a time of excessive chocolate! While we can safely enjoy chocolate bunnies and chocolate eggs, they are not safe for dogs and cats. Chocolate is toxic to dogs and cats. Be sure to keep all your Easter candy in a safe place away from your pets.

While some foods are safe for pets, it’s best not to share Easter dinner with them because of all the extras we add to the foods, like butter and garlic. You can prevent any unwanted digestive issues such as vomiting and diarrhea by sticking to your pet’s regular diet this Easter. These guidelines will help keep your dogs and cats safe. Happy Easter!

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