As dog owners, we love our pups. We treat them as members of the family. We play with them, we share our homes, our sofas, even our beds with them. So, of course, it’s natural that we would want to share our food with them. But there are some foods dogs can’t eat.
But slow down! Before you let Fido finish off your burger and fries, there are a few things you need to know about foods dogs can’t eat and what’s perfectly safe for them to chow down on!
Table of Contents
Your Dogs Diet
We all want to feed our dogs a healthy and balanced diet. Factors like time and budget can dictate what we feed them.
Some people like to make fresh food for their dogs every day. While other people choose to feed their dog a good balanced commercial diet. No matter what you pick – we all want to feed our dogs the very best we can.
Just like with humans, what a dog eats can affect its health, energy levels, longevity, coat, and more.
Toxic Foods For Dogs
In this post, we’ll cover foods dogs can’t eat. There are a lot of foods that are perfectly safe for humans but can cause severe medical problems in dogs.
But you don’t only want to worry about toxic foods, some foods dogs can’t eat because of their texture. For example, almonds aren’t toxic to dogs (like other nuts are), but if they aren’t chewed properly they can block or tear the esophagus.
In fact, one of my dogs can’t have raw-hide chews because she swallows them down, instead of chewing on them. She gulps down all her food, so we have to be very careful what treats we give her. We’ve had quite a few scary moments with her nearly choking on things!
If your dog does eat something and you are not sure if it is safe or not. You can call the ASPCA Poison Control Center.
They are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!
(Save this number in your cell phone for emergencies!)
Foods Dogs Can’t Eat… And What They Can Eat!
Below is the list of foods dogs can’t eat and those that are safe for them.
There are some foods that are OK for your dog in moderation, but they can’t have too much of it (kinda like humans too!).
When giving your dog human food, make sure that it doesn’t have any added salt or sugar.
Safe and Unsafe Foods for Dogs
I’ve used a stoplight system for sorting the foods.
- STOP! – Nope, don’t ever feed to your dog.
- Use Caution – In moderation, some of these foods can be ok. But feed with caution.
- Safe Foods – Go ahead, this is fine for your dog to eat.
A note about the green “Safe Foods”:
All these foods are generally safe for dogs and have minimal risk. But, of course, some dogs do have allergic reactions to foods that are generally safe for all other dogs. So it is always best to try a new food in small qualities to test for allergic reactions.
Fruits, Vegetables & Nuts
Safe Fruits and Veggies for Dogs
- Apple (remove core and seeds)
- Bell peppers (remove core and seeds)
- Cabbage (can cause flatulence!)
- Chia seeds
- Green Beans
- Honeydew Melon (remove seeds)
- Parsley (not suitable for pregnant dogs)
- Potatoes (cooked)
- Sunflower seeds
- Sweet Potatoes
- Watermelon (remove seeds and rind)
Moderate Safe Fruit and Veggies For Dogs
- Apricots (remove the pit)
- Nuts (high in fat and salt)
- Peaches (remove the pit)
Unsafe Fruits and Veggies for Dogs
- Cherries (the seeds are poisonous)
- Corn Cobs
- Jalapeno (or other spicy peppers)
- Macadamia Nuts
- Pickles (high in salt)
Meats & Fish
All meats and fish should be cooked to avoid food-borne bacteria. If you wish to feed a raw diet to your dog, then it is important to consult a vet first.
Safe Meats and Fish For Dogs
- Clams (without shells)
- Pork (cooked well)
- Seafood (cooked well)
- Shrimp (peeled and deveined)
- Sushi (fresh)
Moderate Safe Meat and Fish for Dogs
- Bacon (high in fat)
- Crabs (some dogs are allergic to the iodine)
- Ham (high in salt)
Unsafe Meat and Fish for dogs
- Bones (especially cooked bones)
- Fat trimmings
Dairy, Eggs & Fats
Safe Dairy for Dogs
- Canola Oil (small quantities)
- Cheese (watch out for lactose intolerance)
- Coconut Oil (small quantities)
- Cottage Cheese
- Yogurt (watch out for lactose intolerance)
Moderate Safe Dairy for Dogs
- Butter (too high in fat)
- Lactose-free milk
- Tofu (dogs can be allergic to soy)
Unsafe Dairy Foods for Dogs
- Ice cream (particularly with xylitol sweetner or chocolate)
Grains & Legumes
Safe Grains and Legumes for Dogs
- Beans (cooked)
- Brown Rice
- Crackers (without raisins, chocolate, etc)
- Oatmeal (salt and milk free)
- Pasta (in small quantities)
- Popcorn (unsalted/plain)
- Quinoa (cooked only)
Moderate Safe Grains and Legumes for Dogs
- Bagels (without onion, garlic etc)
Unsafe Grains and Legumes for Dogs
- Granola (contains raisins, nuts and other harmful foods)
- Yeast dough
Safe Drinks for Dogs
- Apple juice (no sugar added)
- Chamomile tea
- Orange juice
Unsafe Drinks for Dogs
- Green tea (caffeine is toxic to dogs)
- Hot chocolate
Moderate Safe Sweet Foods for Dogs
- Pancakes (without sugary toppings/syrup)
Unsafe Sweet Foods for Dogs
- Xylitol (artificial sweetener, very toxic to dogs)
Safe Foods for Dogs
- Honey (not for puppies)
- Plain croutons
- Unsalted Peanut butter (in small quantities, preferably organic)
Unsafe Foods for Dogs
- French fries
- Fried foods
- Human vitamin tablets
Some of the items on this list will be up for debate. There are many foods that, while they aren’t “bad” for your dog, they offer no nutritional value. There are also foods that certain breeds of dogs are more sensitive too.
Please remember that although I’ve tried to cover all the main types of foods dogs can’t eat, there are more that I haven’t mentioned. However, these are the most common foods.
A good general rule of thumb for what foods you can feed your dog is to think about the foods that are healthy for humans.
If it’s not healthy for humans (salty, fatty, sugary) then it’s not going to be good for your dog either!
Sorry Rufus, no more french fries!