What foods are unsafe for pets to eat?

Dog in Dog Food bag

We love our pets and want to share our lives with them, but sharing certain foods can be deadly. Here is a list of some of the foods NOT to feed your pets. They are not listed in any order of importance. If you know of any other foods that can be dangerous for our pets, please add them.

  • Chocolate, especially dark chocolate and cocoa*
  • Caffeine*
  • Onions, Garlic and Chives*
  • Raw Salmon and Trout and any raw fish (cooked is okay)**
  • Raw eggs (cooked eggs 2 or 3 times a week is good)*
  • Peanuts and their husks
  • Macadamia nuts (most nuts are not good for pets so it’s a good idea not to feed any nuts)*
  • Cooked chicken bones – these are very soft and can cause choking or internal injury. For those who feed raw diets, it’s a good idea to keep an eye on your pet when eating bones.*
  • Corn on the cob – the cob can cause choking
  • Raw bread dough, cookie dough and cake mixes*
  • Raisins*
  • Grapes*
  • Any foods containing sugar*
  • artificial sweetener*
  • Potato, rhubarb and tomato leaves, potato and tomato stems*
  • Baby food can contain onion powder*
  • Canned tuna in large amounts can cause malnutrition**
  • Dog food if fed often can cause malnutrition and heart disease in cats**
  • Fat trimmings*
  • Human medications and supplements unless okayed by your veterinarian*
  • Mushrooms*
  • Liver in large amounts causes excess of Vitamin A affecting muscles and bones*
  • Adult aspirin, even one can prove toxic to cats**
  • Acetominophen, ibuprofen, naproxen*
  • Antidepressants*
  • Flea and Tick products ingested or not for cats*
  • Pet medications that pets ingest in high quantities without your supervision, such as painkillers and dewormers*
  • Rat and mouse poisons*
  • Tobacco*
  • Anti-freeze*
  • Seeds and pits of apples, plums, cherries, peaches and apricots contain cyanide and cause seizures and death*
  • Avocados – the leaves and skin are toxic, but the flesh is safe and is often found in dog foods*

Those items with one * affect both cats and dogs. Those items with two ** affect cats in particular. Never give your pet any medication without consulting your vet first. If your pet has ingested something you are not sure of contact your vet immediately or call poison control.

For unsafe foods for Birds and Rodents, please see the individual pet pages.

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