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You may be the type of dog owner who loves to spoil their furry friend with table scraps and other human snacks. But while dogs are typically more appreciative of human food—after all, dried dog food can’t compare to your famous pot roast—you should really be careful about what human foods you feed your pet: some are toxic and can even be fatal if consumed in large dosages. That said, below are some of the more common foods you should never feed your pet no matter what.
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You may not voluntarily feed your dog huge chunks of raw onion (why would you?) but dog’s can get sick no matter how it’s prepared—sautéed, grilled, minced, or even in powder form. This is because onions contain a special enzyme that destroys your dog’s red blood cells, causing Heinz-body anemia. Thus it’s important that you learn how to carefully read food labels. Even some meat based baby foods, which some owners like to give to their aging dogs that have a hard time eating, contain onion powder for flavor. So be cautious of this common vegetable. You also want to make sure that it’s properly stored and tossed away, so your dog can’t get a hold of it.

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Chocolate and Coffee

You may think that dogs don’t have a sweet tooth, but the sugar found in chocolate does attract some curious dogs, especially puppies. But it’s not the sugar that is toxic to your dog. It’s the cacao, which contains caffeine and theobrime—two ingredients that are extremely poisonous to dogs. Thus naturally coffee beans and coffee grounds can be just as lethal. So make sure that your dog can’t get into the trash and accidently consume anything with caffeine, including most sodas.

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Avocados are a controversial fruit because while most experts claim that it is hazardous to dogs, some pet food brands like to add avocado in their dog food to promote a healthy skin and a shinier coat. Makers like to argue that since persin—the fatty acid that can cause severe gastrointestinal issues in dogs—is only found in the leaves, skin, and the meat closest to the pit, their dog food is safe to eat. But I personally wouldn’t risk feeding my pet avocados, guacamole, or dried dog food that uses avocado as an ingredient. You just can never be too safe!

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It used to be an urban legend, but it is now confirmed that grapes and raisins are highly toxic to dogs—even as few as seven grapes or raisins (depending on your dog’s size) can cause irreversible damage to your dog’s kidneys and bring forth acute renal failure which leads to death in a matter of days. Experts have not been able to pin point exactly what’s in the grapes or raisins that is toxic to dogs, but it’s expected to be the mycotoxin.

Alvina Lopez is a freelance writer and blog junkie, who blogs about accredited online colleges. She welcomes your comments at her email: alvina.lopez@gmail.com. 

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