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A happy dog with a white and brown coat looks up, sitting on a wooden floor. In front of it is a bowl filled with a hearty, chunky meal. The dog's expression is eager and excited.
Pet Blog

What Can Dogs Eat?: List of Safe & Unsafe Fruits, Vegetables & Human Foods

Being a dog owner has its benefits: the adorable face licks, the occasional doggy cuddle, and the ridiculously cute faces. If there is one thing all dogs share, it’s their love of food and treats. And while we wish we could answer their tableside begging with all our leftovers, there are some foods our loveable pups can’t eat. The good news is that there are plenty of safe foods that your dog will devour by the handful.

How often do you find yourself wondering if certain foods are safe for your dog? Have you ever heard your dog chewing on something and ran over frantically to figure out what it is? We love our dogs, but sometimes they’ll eat just about anything, and that’s not always good. From potentially dangerous to surprisingly healthy, certain foods can have various effects on your canine companion.

Which Foods are Safe, and Which Are Dangerous for Dogs

Fruits Dogs Can Eat

Fruits can be a delicious snack for both humans and dogs. However, not every fruit that’s enjoyed by humans is suitable for dogs. With seeds, high levels of sugar, and various other factors, fruits can be a gamble with puppies. Fruits that dogs can safely enjoy include:

  • Apples
  • Blueberries
  • Mangoes
  • Oranges
  • Watermelons
  • Blueberries
  • Pears

Fruits like Strawberries, Raspberries, Pineapples, and Bananas are safe, but, just like your favorite candy, let your dog enjoy them in moderation. Prepare these fruits for your pup by removing any seeds or skins.

Fruits Dogs Can't Eat

Avoid giving the following fruits to your dog in any situation:

  • Avocados, while great on toast and preventing millennials from owning homes, are incredibly toxic to dogs and cause vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Cherries are also a major no-no for dogs. The stem and pits contain cyanide, which in high amounts can be poisonous. If consumed, keep an eye out for symptoms such as dilated pupils, red gums, and difficulty breathing. Cherries can also cause gastrointestinal issues.
  • Grapes should also never be eaten by dogs since they can lead to kidney failure.
  • Tomatoes – yes, they’re fruits, and we won’t hear another word on the matter – should be avoided. While the tomato itself is considered safe, the green stem can be very toxic, and it’s hard to ensure none of the toxins from the stem contaminated the rest of the fruit.

Vegetables Dogs Can Eat

Similar to fruits, vegetables range from healthy to safe but in moderation to extremely toxic. Brussels Sprouts are often the unwanted table treat given to the family dog, and they’re perfectly safe for your pup. However, be warned they can make your dog a bit gassy, which is a good tactic if you want to hide your farts from your significant other. Cabbage is also safe but has a similar effect. Carrots are another popular vegetable for pups. The satisfying crunch and nutrients from carrots make them a tasty treat, and they also promote good dental health. The same goes for Celery. Other safe vegetables include:

  • Spinach
  • Peas
  • Green Beans
  • Broccoli

Vegetables Dogs Can't Eat

There are some vegetables you’ll want to avoid. These vegetables can have varying effects on your puppy that range from mild digestive issues to being potentially fatal.

  • Regardless of how they’re prepared, Onions are incredibly toxic for dogs. Avoid giving these to your dog in all scenarios.
  • While some Mushrooms are safe for dogs, it’s best to avoid them because there are so many different species of mushrooms.
  • Asparagus isn’t entirely unsafe, but there isn’t a good reason to give it to a dog. Raw asparagus is too rough for dogs, but when you cook it, any potential nutrients are gone, so it’s pretty pointless.

Human Foods Dogs Can Eat

These are the more decadent foods on your plate that your dog is desperately hoping to get his paws on. There are a lot of foods your dog can eat, but, again, some are perfectly safe while some are fine in moderation, and some to avoid altogether.

Unseasoned Rice, Cooked Pasta, and Whole Wheat Bread are entirely safe for dogs and are beneficial to their health. The easily digestible carbohydrates are a great source of energy for dogs of all ages and can help resolve upset tummies. You can give foods like French Fries and Popcorn to dogs, but make sure there is minimal seasoning on it and only give them a few bites. Even meals like Turkey and other Lean Meats can be an excellent treat for pups, but again, practice moderation and avoid giving them anything too seasoned.

Human Foods Dogs Can't Eat

There are also several foods dogs should never eat. It’s common knowledge that a pup should never eat Chocolate, but a few other foods are just as detrimental. You’ll want to keep these foods away from your dog when you’re eating them.

  • Xylitol is in candy, gum, toothpaste, baked goods, and diet products. This chemical can cause liver failure and a whole host of other problems.
  • Alcohol. No matter how fun it sounds, do not crack open a cold one with your dog. A dog’s digestive system isn’t designed to absorb alcohol.
  • Avoid anything with Macadamia Nuts. They cause muscle shakes and fevers.
  • Bones. While we’ve long thought that you should give a dog a bone, you may want to stick to chews instead. Bones can splinter when consumed and can damage a dog’s digestive system or even cause a blockage.

It’s essential to keep an eye out on what your dog consumes. Don’t hesitate to pull a Sherlock Holmes and investigate what your dog’s sneakily eating in the corner. Just like with humans, it’s important your pup maintain a healthy diet. You can even combine some of these safe-to-eat foods to create specialty treats like smoothies and pup cakes. Read the labels on your food to ensure it’s safe and also make sure your pup gets plenty of regular exercise. If you’re still stumped on what is and isn’t safe, you can always trust the many food and treat options we have available at “I and love and you”.

Learn More

We're pet parents too, which means we've asked all of the questions around "can my dog (and cat!) eat?". Check out more of our holistic guides: