Making dog food has grown in popularity over the years. For dog owners, making your dog’s food gives you complete freedom to put in their favorite ingredients and also make sure they are eating healthy food that’s good for their body.
However, there are tons of ingredients that are safe and even beneficial for humans that might be dangerous for dogs. If you’re giving your dog leftover human food or getting them a meal as a treat, there are some ingredients that you might not notice are actually toxic for them and could cause some serious health complications.
To help you keep your dog in tip-top shape and make sure that they’re eating right, it’s best to watch for certain ingredients, especially when feeding them human food. Here’s a list of some key ingredients you should look out for when feeding your dog human food.
All of these ingredients can cause different complications and reactions in your dog, so it’s best to keep your pet away from them at all costs.
Garlic, Onions, and Shallots
Firstly, garlic, onions, and shallots are a huge no-no for dogs. In fact, anything in the allium family, which also includes chives should be kept away from your dog. This is because members of this family contain compounds known as thiosulphates and disulphates, all of which are bad for your dog. These compounds target your dog’s red blood cells, which are responsible for carrying oxygen to different areas of the body.
There are many different symptoms of garlic and allium poisoning in dogs. These include vomiting, lethargy, and diarrhea. In severe cases of garlic poisoning, your dog can also develop hemolytic anemia, which can cause major problems down the line.
Garlic poisoning is actually very common and serious for dogs that many pet owners experience it. We’ve even written a guide about everything you need to know about garlic and dogs. Click here to find out how bad garlic is for dogs.
Grapes & Raisins
While grapes and raisins are staples in a lot of kitchens, you should keep them away from your dog at all costs. Grapes and raisins find their way into a ton of different human recipes, considering their distinct flavor and accessibility. However, while they do a great job of adding sweetness to any dish or plate, they can be toxic for dogs, which is why you should check if their food has any raisins before mealtime.
One of the unique things about grapes is that scientists aren’t sure why they are toxic for dogs. Researchers are yet to pinpoint the exact toxin in grapes that is bad for dogs. However, what we are sure of is what grapes and raisins can do to your dog.
When your dog eats too many grapes or raisins, it can experience liver and kidney failure. Now, it doesn’t take a veterinarian to explain how serious these consequences are. Kidney and liver failure are incredibly serious medical emergencies that can have fatal consequences, so make sure your dog never finds itself eating grapes or raisins.
Aside from being a favorite drink for humans for centuries, alcohol is also present in a lot of our food. Different cuisines and cooking styles from all around the world mix alcohol in some of their recipes, which usually results in a rich and bold flavor. However, while the cooking process burns off most of the alcohol, there are still trace amounts in the food that can be bad for your dog.
Alcohol has the same effects on dogs as it does on humans such as dizziness, vomiting, and liver issues. However, dogs are much smaller beings than humans, so they actually require less alcohol to experience these detrimental effects. So, make sure that your dog stays away from alcohol and any food or deserts that might have alcohol in it.
Chocolate is a well-known toxic food for dogs. And since it’s present in a lot of deserts and other human foods, it’s best to always check if the food has chocolate before giving some to your dog. Chocolate contains a compound known as theobromine. While this is completely safe for humans to consume, it can be very toxic for dogs and cause a range of problems.
Theobromine is most present in darker chocolates but can be found in just about any chocolate there is. Additionally, chocolate also contains caffeine and high amounts of sugar, which are both very bad for dogs, so make sure to keep your pet away from chocolate foods as much as possible.
What to Do If Your Dog Eats Toxic Foods
If you catch your dog eating any of these toxic ingredients, it’s a cause of concern. However, it’s no reason to panic. Usually, dogs can handle the toxic ingredients on their own and will typically experience symptoms for 24-48 hours.
When you catch your dog eating toxic food, the first thing to do is inform your vet. From there, your vet will advise you on what to do which will usually include observing them for 24-48 hours. If symptoms disappear after that time, you’re usually out of the water.
However, if the symptoms persist after 2-3 days, then that needs immediate veterinary attention. If you notice your dog vomiting, having diarrhea, and exhibiting other food poisoning symptoms for that long, schedule an appointment with your vet as soon as possible.