That’s Not Dog Food! | Companion Animal Veterinary Hospital

That’s Not Dog Food!

Stephen Curtis's picture
grapes, milk, chocolate, beer, macadamias on onion with a big red cross

Dogs eat a lot of things, which isn’t the same as saying you can feed your dog anything, far from it!

Dogs are living longer and longer lives and this has much to do with the diets we feed them now. Modern foods are well balanced and provide dogs with age appropriate nutrition. Even though there are a number of great foods out there that dogs thrive on, many owners can’t resist giving their pets a few treats off the plate as well.

In general a small amount of treats every once in a while is harmless. However, as with humans, obesity rates are rising and there are some foods that are definite no-nos.

Here is a list of the more common culprits:

1. Booze

Alcohol in drinks and foods can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, antisocial behaviour, breathing difficulties, coma and even death. No it’s not funny. Steer clear of the beer.

2. Chocolate and Coffee

These contain methylxanthines that can cause gastro upsets , heart problems, seizures and death. The darker the chocolate, the higher the concentrations of the substance.

3. Grapes and Sultanas

Exactly how these cause kidney damage is unknown but until it is better understood, they should be avoided as the consequences for some dogs can be severe.

4. Macadamia Nuts

Can cause weakness, vomiting, tremors and hyperthermia. Signs can take 12 hours to develop and up to 2 days to resolve.

5. Dairy Products

Adult dogs do not have significant amounts of Lactase, the enzyme that digests lactose (the sugar found in milk), so like many people, they are lactose intolerant.

6. Onions, Garlic, Chives

These are all members of the Allium family and can cause damage to red blood cells leading to anaemia - seen as weakness and pale gums.

This list is far from exhaustive, so please remember that dogs do have different digestive systems than people and not all scraps are good for your pooch.

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