Human Foods That Are Toxic to Dogs

I love my dog, but there are certain foods I have to keep away from him. This is probably the case for you and your pooch, too. After all, dogs can’t eat all the same foods we can—in fact, some of our favorite human treats are downright dangerous for them. Here’s a list of common people foods that are toxic to dogs (and one bonus item that’s just really bad for them; they shouldn’t eat it).


Grapes and raisins are toxic to dogs. The exact reason why is unknown, but it’s suspected that the toxin in grapes and raisins is related to their sugar content.

According to Pet Poison Helpline, symptoms of grape and raisin toxicity include: vomiting, loss of appetite or lethargy (sleepiness), weakness or difficulty breathing. If your dog has ingested grapes or raisins within the last six hours, take your dog immediately to an emergency clinic.

If you wait longer than six hours before taking your dog for treatment at the vet’s office, don’t panic—the damage may have been done by then; however there’s still a possibility for recovery if treatment begins right away!


Raisins are toxic to dogs because they are high in sugar and can cause hypoglycemia. The sugar content in raisins is so high that even a small snack can be dangerous for your dog as it causes them to have seizures, liver failure, and kidney failure.

If your pet has eaten any raisins or grapes, you should contact a veterinarian immediately!


Chocolate is toxic to dogs, and can be deadly. It contains both caffeine and theobromine, which are harmful to dogs. Even small amounts of chocolate can cause seizures, coma or death in a dog. Chocolate poisoning is most common around holidays when you might be baking cookies or making candy for the occasion.


Alcohol is one of the most common toxic foods for dogs. It can cause tremors, seizures and even death in dogs who consume it. Alcohol is found in beer, wine and hard liquor so you should keep those items away from your dog at all times. In addition to alcohol-containing drinks, some cough and cold medicines contain alcohol as well and should also be kept out of reach from your pet. Mouthwashes that contain alcohol are also harmful to pets so make sure you wipe them off before giving them to Fido!


The avocado is a beautiful fruit with an amazing texture (yes, we know it’s technically a vegetable). We love avocados and buy them almost every week. But did you know that avocados are toxic to dogs?

That’s right: the beloved avocado has been known to cause gastrointestinal distress in dogs, which can lead to vomiting, diarrhea and even death. The culprit behind this toxicity is persin, a natural toxin found in the leaves and bark of plants from the Persea genus—including avocado trees.

Macadamia nuts

Macadamia nuts are toxic to dogs because they contain a compound called “alpha-methylbutyric acid,” which is also toxic to humans. However, only 0.02 percent of macadamia nuts contain this compound. That means that if your dog eats 100 grams of macadamia nuts (about 5 ounces), he’ll ingest about 2 milligrams of alpha-methylbutyric acid. That’s not enough to cause any serious health problems in dogs—and thankfully most dogs will probably avoid eating massive amounts of macadamia nuts anyway!

Onions and garlic

Onions and garlic are toxic to dogs. They can be found in many foods and cause anemia (which is when the body doesn’t have enough red blood cells), red blood cell damage, and even death. Garlic is so toxic that it can kill a dog within just eight hours of consumption.

Onions and garlic are also toxic to cats, so keep those away from your feline friends as well!

Pit fruits (like cherries, peaches, plums and apricots)

While it’s totally fine for you to eat these fruits, the pits are toxic to your dog. If he eats them, he may experience vomiting, diarrhea and even death.

If you don’t want your pup eating the pits of peaches, plums and apricots (or cherries), remove the pits from any fruit before sharing it with him.

Peach pits contain cyanogenic glycosides which release hydrogen cyanide when digested by a dog; this toxin can cause serious illness or even death in pets that ingest enough of it. Plums and prunes also contain some of these dangerous compounds as well as amygdalin which converts into hydrogen cyanide when chewed on by dogs or cats—again causing sicknesses like nausea/vomiting/diarrhea along with possible seizures due to brain damage caused by too much exposure!


By now, you should have a pretty good idea of the foods that are safe and unsafe for your dog. With this knowledge, you can avoid dangerous situations where your pup might be tempted to eat something harmful. Some dogs are more food-driven than others; if your pup is particularly motivated by snacks, you may want to keep certain foods behind closed doors or away from doggie reach just in case!