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What Is Toxic To My Dog?

Updated: Nov 30, 2023

There are many common foods, plants and human medications that are very dangerous to our dogs if consumed. These are the most important ones to know so you don’t accidentally give your dog a tasty but toxic treat!

Food Items


  • Chocolate is very toxic to dogs, but they don’t know that! Dogs love the taste, so never leave anything containing chocolate in reach of your dog.

  • Affects the nervous system and heart.

  • Can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, wobbliness, and seizures.

Macadamia Nuts

  • Affects the nervous system.

  • Can cause vomiting, weakness, wobbliness and tremors.

Grapes, Raisins & Currants

  • Can cause kidney failure and vomiting, even in small quantities.

Onions & Garlic

  • Can cause serious anaemia in dogs.

  • The amount needed to cause a toxic effect may differ between dogs, so best to totally avoid.

Fatty Foods (eg. sausages, meat fat, bacon, hot chips)

  • Can cause ‘pancreatitis’ (inflammation of the pancreas).

  • Mild pancreatitis causes mild vomiting and diarrhoea, but severe pancreatitis can be life-threatening.

Cooked Bones

  • Bones should only ever be fed raw (uncooked) and large enough that the dog does not swallow them whole.

  • Cooked bones can shatter when chewed and fragments can get stuck in the digestive system.

  • Sharp kebab skewers and chunks of corn cobs are other common culprits for causing injury or blockage.


  • Can be fed in small quantities only as dogs are technically lactose intolerant.

  • Too much dairy can cause vomiting, diarrhoea and gas.

  • Feed cheese or yoghurt as a treat only.

  • Avoid milk and cream.


  • Some varieties are toxic so it is safest to avoid mushrooms entirely.


  • The skin and stone of an avocado is toxic.

  • Causes severe vomiting and diarrhoea.

Artificial Sweeteners (Xylitol)

  • Xylitol is commonly found in chewing gum, sweet drinks and lollies.

  • It turns up in some brands of peanut butter (normally safe for dogs).

  • Can be fatal to dogs in large quantities.

Alcohol & Caffeine

  • Can cause heart and liver failure.


Tomato Plants

  • Leaves and unripe fruit can be toxic.

  • Can cause vomiting, diarrhoea and weakness.

Brunfelsia (Yesterday-Today-&-Tomorrow Plant)

  • Fruit, flowers and leaves are all toxic.

  • Can cause drooling, vomiting and diarrhoea.

Wandering Jew

  • Can cause allergic skin reactions.


  • Can cause heart problems, drooling, vomiting, tremors or collapse.

Sago Palm

  • The nuts of this tree are the most toxic.

  • Can cause vomiting and bloody diarrhoea.


  • All parts of the plant are toxic.

  • Can cause drooling, vomiting and diarrhoea.

Azaleas & Rhododendrons

  • All parts of these plants can be toxic.

  • Can cause drooling, vomiting, diarrhoea and wobbliness.


  • Can contain dangerous moulds, bacteria or organic compounds if eaten.

Human Medications

Never give a human pain killer to an animal unless following the direct instructions of your vet. Animals process medications very differently from people and you could overdose or poison them by mistake.


  • Can be fatal in cats! It can be used in dogs but at different doses from humans so always call your vet before giving.


  • Many human brands can be given to dogs so ring your vet to check the correct dosing for their size.

Vitamin Tablets

  • Overdosing on vitamin tablets can cause more harm than good so it is best to avoid human products in dogs and check with your vet if an animal-specific one is required.

blister packet of round white pills

What do I do if my dog ate one of these!?

If you are concerned your dog may have consumed something toxic:

1. ring your local vet straight away for advice.

2. Keep the packaging of the item if you have it so you can read the ingredients and concentrations to the vet. For items such as chocolate or medications this can make a big difference to how the veterinary team will approach your pet’s treatment and will be invaluable information.


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