10 Things Never To Feed Your Dog and Why

By Windsor Holman

We all love our pet dogs! They’re friendly, cute and loyal. We want to keep them safe
from all of the dangers out there in the big wide world. If you have a beagle, a golden
retriever, a dachshund, a Yorkshire terrier, or any other dog breed at home with you,
you know how I feel. They’ve been in movies and books–Shiloh, Stubby, Snoopy, Goofy,
Scooby Doo–you get the idea. So how do we keep them safe? We can put them on leashes, put a collar on them, take them to the vet every month. But there is something that can happen in your own
home! Food poisoning. Many dog owners like to feed their dogs scraps from the dinner
table. Everyone is familiar with the concept of not feeding your dog chocolate–it’s
common sense! But if you continue this article, I’ll tell you about ten foods to never feed
your dog–but these foods aren’t going to be your normal fruits and veggies. I’m going to
dive to the bottom of the food poisoning pit and bring up some food dangers you might
pick up your dog and take them to the emergency room immediately when you read.

garlic reflection
Photo courtesy of Grand Rapids Product Photography

#1: Garlic/Onion
Feeding your dog these foods will do more than make their eyes water. Many people
think that feeding your precious puppy these seemingly harmless foods is fine, but that
decision is a big no-no! “It doesn’t matter whether they are powdered, raw, cooked or
dehydrated–all can kill off your dog’s red blood cells and cause anemia (a condition
resulting in weariness and pallor).” What the folks over at howstuffworks.com are saying
that feeding your dog garlic and onion will cause tiredness because of loss of blood cells
and if you feed them too much, food poisoning, which is not deadly unless ignored. So
save the foods for a vampire attack, not your dog’s next meal!

#2: Caffeine
Ever been drinking coffee and saw your dog, begging for a trip to Starbucks, and
thought, maybe just this once? STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Caffeine is completely deadly
for dogs! A drop or two that spilled onto the floor that your dog lapped up certainly
won’t get them sick, but if you drop a whole cup, run for the mop before your innocent
canine has a chance to reach it. Even coffee-flavored ice cream is fatal. So ignore your
dog and sip every last drop of coffee before plunking it in your trash can, out of your
dog’s reach. He’ll be thankful later in life!

#3: Salt/Salty Food
Your pupper might be nudging some chicken-flavored Lays in the pantry, but lead him
away from it. Consuming too much salt will result in vomiting, diarrhea, depression,
tremors, high body temp, seizures and even death!! “Salt, as well as salt-heavy foods like
chips or pretzels, can lead to excessive thirst and urination, and even sodium ion
poisoning in pets.” (clark.com) So keep away the salt shaker!

Grand Rapids Product Photography
Grand Rapids Product Photography

#4: Alcohol
You might say to your friends one day, “I wonder what will happen if I give little Robert
some of my margarita. Should I do it?” Even if they say yes, please don’t pour that in
their water! Alcohol has the same effect on your little Robbie’s brain and liver, but the
effects are twice as bad with twice as little! “If a dog consumes just a small amount of
alcohol, it can cause vomiting, diarrhea, central nervous system depression, problems
with coordination, difficulty breathing, coma, and even death,” clark.com says. Keep
away the whiskey, people!

#5: Macadamia Nuts
First of all, what are macadamia nuts? These nuts are high in healthy fat and people eat
them to lose weight. They also contain dietary fiber, protein, manganese, thiamin, and a
fine amount of copper. However, these nuts aren’t so “healthy” for Sweetheart over here.
The high-fat contents irritate the stomach of the dog and are (for unknown reasons)
toxic. In a nutshell, a dose can result in food poisoning that can lead to an inability to
walk for a small amount of time. More things that can happen are severe weakness,
nausea, and diarrhea that will result in a visit to the hospital.

#6: Dairy
Dairy brings many good things. Cheese, milk, ice cream, etc. But did you know that most
dogs are lactose intolerant? You know what that means! No milk on a winter night or
whatever. It has the same effects it has on normal human beings that are lactose
intolerant: vomiting, diarrhea, and gas (which may lead to a trip to the hospital) are
most of the problems. But here’s the catch–they can’t take a pill for it, which leads us to
the next food hazard.

#7: Medications
If you are puppy-proofing your house for the dog coming on Sunday, start with your
medicine cabinet in the bathroom. If it somehow broke and your dog got to the
medications before you did, it could lead to…well, I’ll just let clark.com tell you. “While
these aren’t foods, common medications can cause serious health problems for your
pets, so it’s important to keep them locked up in a safe place. If common medicines like
ibuprofen and acetaminophen are ingested, they can cause severe damage.” I read some
more on a different study and it can even cause death!

#8: Raw Dough
Don’t you just love to pick off a little bit of dough before the pizza is shoveled into the
oven to bake? Have you ever thought about throwing down a little bit of it to small Rosie
licking her puppy lips at your feet? Well, don’t. As goodhousekeeping.com explains in
their article, “the yeast in unbaked bread can cause life-threatening illnesses after it’s
ingested. ‘The dough continues to rise in their stomach and can extend their entire
abdomen, causing extreme pain and potential blockages and their intestinal tract,’ Dr.
Bernal says.” The effect the ve described could possibly lead to the twisting of their
stomach known as gastric-dilation volvulus. Another side effect is “the fermentation of
the raw dough” which can lead to alcohol poisoning, a topic we already covered.

#9: Sugar-Free Gum & Candy
My mouth waters just thinking of jolly ranchers and gummy bears and all of that other
yummy junk food us kids love to stuff our faces with. However, almost every low-calorie
or sugar-free gum & candy contain xylitol, a sweetener that acts as a substitute for sugar.
Consuming xylitol can cause liver problems, insulin spikes, low blood sugar, and even
death. Keep the candy and gum up high, people!

#10: Chocolate
At last, we reach the end of the list and the mother of all dog food poisoning: chocolate!
It turns out that we’ve been eating caffeine since our parents gave us chocolate for the
first time. Yup, that’s right–there’s caffeine in chocolate, although just a little bit. Moe
compounds like caffeine can cause vomiting, dehydration, abdominal pain, muscle
tremors, irregular heart rhythms, and seizures, and of course, death.
I hope you enjoyed my article. Now you know some of the many things your puppy
should never consume. If you do suspect your puppy has eaten one of these foods, it is strongly recommended you contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison
Control Center at (888)-426-4435.

Works Cited
1) http://www.animal.howstuffworks.com
2) http://www.clark.com
3) http://www.goodhousekeeping.com

Beagle eating a bone
Beagle eating a bone

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