Pets: Don’t give your dogs human food – it could hurt or kill them

Here’s what to avoid feeding Fido, from avocados & apple seeds to rhubarb & tomato seeds

People food isn’t always good for your canine companion, no matter how much your pup might beg for it. It’s best to refrain from sharing your meals and beverages and recreational habits with your dog, especially when it comes to certain foods, according to the BC SPCA.

Here’s an SPCA list of items to review and be aware of to keep your canine safe from toxins.

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What to avoid:

• Alcohol: Alcohol can cause intoxication, lack of coordination, poor breathing, abnormal acidity and potentially even a coma or death.

• Apple seeds: The casing of apple seeds are toxic to a dog because they contain a natural chemical (amygdlin) that releases cyanide when digested.

• Avocado: Avocados contain persin, which can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and heart congestion.

• Coconut oil: Can cause intestinal upset and other problems in dogs who cannot tolerate high levels of fat in their diet.

• Cooked bones: When it comes to bones, the danger is that cooked bones can easily splinter when chewed by your dog; the splinters can cause damage when chewed and/or swallowed.

• Candy and chewing gum: Not only does candy contain sugar, but it often contains xylitol, which can lead to the over-release of insulin, kidney failure, and worse.

• Chocolate: Chocolate usually contains caffeine as well as theobromine and theophylline, which can be toxic and cause panting, vomiting and diarrhea, and/or damage your dog’s heart and nervous systems.

• Coffee: Caffeine can cause death if enough is ingested by your pet.

• Raw fish: The primary fish that you need to be careful about are salmon and trout. Raw salmon can be fatal to dogs if the fish is infected with a certain parasite.

• Garlic: Garlic is related to onions, which are toxic for dogs.

• Grapes and raisins: Grapes contain a toxin that can cause severe liver damage and kidney failure.

• Hops: This beer ingredient can be bad for your dog. The consumption of hops cause panting, an increased heart rate, fever, seizures, and even death.

• Marijuana and edibles containing cannabis-infused butter or oil: Marijuana, if ingested, can adversely affect your dog’s nervous system and heart rate.

• Mushrooms: The wrong mushroom can be fatal to humans as well as your pet.

• Onions and chives: These contain disulfides and sulfoxides (thiosulphate), both of which can cause anemia and damage red blood cells.

• Rhubarb and tomato leaves: These contain oxalates, which can adversely affect a canine’s digestive, nervous, and urinary systems.

• Salt: just like humans, excessive salt is not good for your dog.

• Tobacco: Nicotine can damage your pet’s digestive and nervous systems, increase their heart rate, make them pass out, and ultimately result in death.

• Yeast (on its own or in dough): Yeast rises, whether in your dog’s stomach or not. While a little can cause gas and discomfort, too much of it could rupture your dog’s stomach and intestines.

Should you suspect your dog has ingested something toxic, call your veterinarian or an emergency veterinary clinic immediately. How quickly treatment is started can mean the difference between life and death. 

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