Which foods are toxic to dogs?

Dogs love to eat, but there are some regular human foods that their paws should never touch. Our Flat Rock vets explain which items are particularly important to ensure they stay away from. 

Toxic Foods for Dogs

While these are common items for people to enjoy, dogs should never come into contact with these, as they are especially toxic to their systems and can cause serious illness or even death.


While chocolate is a decadent treat for us, it’s one of the most notorious no-nos for your dog, since it contains theobromine (the highest quantity of this stimulant is found in dark chocolate). This is toxic to your pup and can cause kidney failure.

Grapes and Raisins

Though they’re a healthy snack for humans, grapes and raisins are bad news for dogs as they can make a dog sick even in small amounts and cause kidney failure. If your dog has eaten these, vomiting, followed by depression and lack of energy, are early tell-tale signs something is wrong. Keep the handful of grapes for yourself, as this amount can kill a dog.

Chives and Onions

Whether they’re raw, cooked or dry, onions are particularly toxic to canines, as eating them can cause damage to red blood cells and irritate their gastrointestinal tract. Symptoms of illness do not always appear immediately after they’ve eaten them - it can take up to a few days.

Plums, Persimmons and Peaches

These foods contain seeds and pits that can cause intestinal issues for your dog. Plum and peach pits also contain cyanide, which is toxic to dogs and humans.

Sugar and Artificial Sweetener (Xylitol)

Any food containing sugar or sugar-substituted items, including corn syrup (a less costly form of sugar or glucose that’s found in an overwhelming amount of food) can lead to dental decay, obesity and eventually, diabetes. Gum, candy, baked, goods, and other treats are delicious for us, but extremely toxic to dogs even in small amounts, and can lead to seizures, blood clotting disorders, liver failure and even death.

Be careful to check labels on items such as peanut butter before offering your pet that afternoon snack, as the artificial sweetener xylitol is often found in this.


Always keep tobacco products high above your dog’s reach, as the nicotine found in these can be lethal to your furry friend. If your dog suddenly exhibits symptoms such as weakness, abnormal heart rate or vomiting and you have tobacco in your house, tobacco poisoning may be the culprit and can come on quickly - usually within an hour after ingesting.

What should I do if I find my dog has eaten toxic food?

Even if they’ve eaten a small amount of any of these items, dogs may feel sick fairly quickly and can even die. If you discover your dog has ingested anything on this list, call your vet immediately and take your dog in for an emergency appointment.

Has your pet ingested toxic food? Our vets are experienced in treating emergencies. Contact our office immediately.

Toxic food for dogs, Flat Rock Vet

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