If your dog has gotten into something he or she shouldn’t, you may be on the search for a list of toxic foods for dogs. Some foods toxic to dogs are ones you might already know about, but there are others you might not be aware of. Here is a quick list of toxic food for dogs, courtesy of ASPCA.


Hopefully you already know better than to get your kicks by giving your dog beer to drink. But, it must be mentioned. Whether it is straight up alcohol or food products that contain alcohol, it is a big no-no for dogs. Alcohol can cause vomiting, diarrhea, impaired coordination, nervous system depression, trouble breathing, tremors, abnormal blood acidity, coma, or even death.

The Three C’s: Chocolate, Coffee and Caffeine

What is it in these products that make them toxic foods for dogs? Substances called methylxanthines. They are found in cacao seeds, coffee plants and the nuts that are used in the manufacturing of certain sodas containing caffeine. If your dog ingests them, they can cause vomiting and diarrhea, excessive thirst and urination, panting, hyperactivity, tremors, abnormal heart rhythm, seizures or even death.

The darker the chocolate, the more dangerous for dogs. If you have a big dog and it has accidentally eaten a chocolate chip cookie, he or she may be fine. However, if you have a little dog that has ingested an entire chocolate bar, you should contact the ASPCA Animal Poison Control hotline at 888-426-4435, or take them to the vet right away.

Citrus Fruits

Whether it is the citrus fruit itself, stems, leaves, peels, or seeds, they contain essential oils that can cause stomach irritation. When ingested in larger amounts, citrus can even cause central nervous system depression. When small amounts of citrus are eaten, your dog is likely to have a minor stomachache.

Coconut-Containing Foods

If your dog eats a small amount of coconut, no serious harm is likely to occur. However, fresh coconut does contain oils that may cause your dog’s stomach to be upset, have loose stools or diarrhea. In case you are wondering about coconut water, its potassium levels are too high and shouldn’t be given to your dog either.

Grapes and Raisins

Both grapes and raisins are highly toxic to dogs. If ingested, they may cause kidney failure.


Specifically, should your dog eat macadamia nuts, he or she may experience weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors and hypothermia. Within 12 hours of ingestion, signs will appear, lasting between 12 and 48 hours.

Nuts in general are also a problem. These include almonds, pecans and walnuts. The high amount of oils and fats present in them can cause vomiting and diarrhea, and may even cause pancreatitis.

Dairy Products

Milk or milk-based products will cause your dog to have diarrhea or digestive upset. This is because dogs don’t have enough lactase in their bodies, which is what breaks down the lactose in milk.

Garlic, Onions and Chives

Any of these vegetables can cause irritation in the gastrointestinal tract, which could lead to red blood cell damage. This is particularly a concern if large amounts are digested.

Undercooked Meat, Bones and Eggs

Undercooked meat and raw eggs are foods that are toxic to dogs. This is because they can contain Salmonella and E. coli. Although it may sound like a logical choice to give your dog raw bones, it can be dangerous for dogs to chew on them. This is because the bone might splinter, puncturing your dog’s digestive tract. The dog can also choke on bones.

Salty Foods

When consumed in large amounts, salt will cause excessive thirst and urination, and in worst cases sodium ion poisoning. If your dog has consumed salty foods, you should watch for vomiting, diarrhea, depression, tremors, high body temperature and seizures. This is why you should avoid giving your dog salty foods such as popcorn, potato chips and pretzels.


Xylitol may be something you haven’t heard of that is a toxic food for dogs. It is used to artificially sweeten many foods, such as gum, candy, bakery foods and even toothpaste. Consuming xylitol can cause an insulin release, which can lead to liver failure. Increasing levels of insulin can lead to hypoglycemia. If your dog has been poisoned by xylitol, symptoms include vomiting, lethargy and loss of coordination. Seizures may happen as a result, as well as elevated liver enzymes and liver failure.

Yeast Dough

No doughnuts for doggies. In a dog’s stomach, yeast dough rises, causing gas. His or her stomach will begin to bloat. It may also twist, which becomes an emergency that threatens their life. Another side effect that occurs is that your dog can become drunk, as ethanol is produced as a by-product of yeast dough.

So there you have it, now you know the toxic foods for dogs. If you suspect your dog has ingested any of these foods, as mentioned, the ASPCA Poison Control can be reached at 888-426-4435.