Toxic food for dogs

fluffy dog in a fluffy dog bed
Written by: Sam Webster (BVetMed MRCVS) Head Vet at Joii

To ensure that your dog is as healthy as can be, it’s important to keep in mind the foods that they can and can’t have. There are many different ingredients and products out there that can be quite toxic and poisonous for your furry companion.


Dogs are quite adventurous and very quick to putting their paws on what they view to be tasty treats, but not all the food and drink they come into contact with is safe for them. In this post, we’ll go through the food and drink items that are particularly toxic and dangerous for your dog.


  1. Onions, garlic and chives

    Onions and similar produce, whether raw or cooked, are extremely toxic to dogs and if consumed can cause digestive discomfort and damage to their red blood cells and anaemia. Signs of discomfort from eating any of these can take a few days to show, too, so it’s important to keep an eye on your dogs. Do not feed your dog any table scraps containing onion or garlic (or powder) or baby foods containing onion.  

  2. Chocolate

    Who doesn’t love chocolate? But unfortunately, it’s poisonous for dogs. One of the ingredients in chocolate (theobromine) is poisonous to dogs, and when eaten by them can cause vomiting and diarrhoea, panting, excessive thirst and urination, hyperactivity, an abnormal heart rhythm, tremors, seizures and in extreme cases even death.

  3. Grapes and raisins

    An unknown toxic substance found in grapes and raisins can cause kidney failure and severe liver damage, so it’s best to keep dogs completely away from them even one raisin can be severely toxic. Remember that raisins are also found in hot cross buns, mince pies and fruit loaf, among other goodies - so keep your dog away from all of these foods too.

  4. Nuts

    Nuts such as almonds, pecans, walnuts and even macadamia nuts contain very high amounts of oils and fats, which can cause vomiting and diarrhoea, and potentially even pancreatitis. Macadamia nuts can actually cause severe weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors and hypothermia in dogs – symptoms tend to appear within 12 hours after consuming and can last up to 48 hours.

  5. Coconut and coconut oil

    Coconut and coconut oil is not particularly harmful for your pet is consumed in very small amounts, however if they ingest it in larger amounts, the oils contained in the product can cause stomach upset, loose stools, diarrhoea and pancreatitis.

  6. Plants such as lilies and daffodils

    Certain plants such as lilies and daffodils can pose risks to your dog/s. Whilst not all lilies are highly toxic or poisonous for dogs, most of them can cause an upset stomach or other uncomfortable reactions when consumed.

    Daffodils on the other hand are actually poisonous to dogs if they eat the bulbs or flowers, or even drink water from a vase with daffodils in them. They can give your dog an upset stomach, cause vomiting, make them sleepy and wobbly and can also cause fits.

  7. Acorns and conkers

    You may find that your dog is tempted to snack on an acorn or conker, but they can actually be quite dangerous for them. Acorns contain tannins that are harmful to dogs and cause severe stomach upset, kidney failure, and sometimes even death. Conkers also contain a poison which is particularly toxic to dogs and can cause bloody or regular vomiting, diarrhoea, drooling, abdominal pain, increased thirst and reduced appetite.

  8. Artificial Sweeteners

    The artificial sweetener xylitol  can be found in many foods such as peanut butter, sugar free gum, diabetic cake products and diet foods. Always check the label thoroughly before giving your dog any human foods. If your dog eats xylitol it causes their blood sugar levels to drop dangerously low resulting in vomiting, incoordination and seizuring. In some cases it can also cause blood clotting disorders and liver disease.





What should I do if my dog has eaten any of these?


If any of the above items have been consumed by your dog in even small amounts, it can be extremely harmful for them and even fatal, so it’s necessary that you act immediately and call your vet immediately.

Always discuss with your vet before introducing any new foods or supplements into your dog’s diet to check they are safe to give.


Trustpilot reviews