Unveiling the hidden dangers – 5 common human foods toxic for pets

While desiring human food may seem endearing quality of pets, giving them human food is not a good idea. It may be hard to resist their longing gazes, but you should refrain from sharing your food with your pets for several reasons. Read on to learn the common human foods that can be toxic to pets.


  • Chocolate is the most commonly consumed food item that can be toxic for furry friends. It is undeniably a well-known toxin found in human homes for dogs. However, dog owners do not completely understand how toxic it is, particularly for smaller dogs.

Chocolate poisoning can even prove fatal for dogs if consumed in small amounts. While cats are less likely to consume chocolate, it poses a similar risk. It is advisable to avoid feeding them chocolate, not even in small amounts.

Coconut And Coconut Oil

  • It is essential to remember that the milk and flesh of fresh coconut contain oils that can cause digestive problems in pets, including diarrhea and loose stools. Although small amounts of coconut and coconut-based products are generally safe for pets, it is better to exercise caution when introducing human foods.

Citrus Fruits

  • Citrus fruits, including lemons, limes, oranges, clementines, and grapefruits, contain citric acid and essential oils that can harm pets. It is crucial to avoid giving any part of these fruits, such as stems, leaves, peels, fruit, and seeds, to your pets. Small quantities of citrus fruits result in minor stomach upset.

However, consuming large amounts can lead to symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting, and even central nervous system depression. Therefore, it’s best to avoid feeding your pets citrus fruits altogether to ensure their well-being,


  • Alcoholic beverages and food containing alcohol are extremely toxic for pets and should never be given to them under any circumstances. They lead to severe symptoms, including vomiting, diarrhea, impaired coordination, central nervous system depression, breathing difficulties, tremors, abnormal blood acidity, coma, and in the worst cases, even death. However, if you suspect your pet has ingested alcohol, contact your veterinarian for immediate assistance.

Garlic And Onions

  • human foods toxic for petsGarlic and onions are harmful to pets, particularly to cats. They contain certain chemical compounds that can irritate and inflame the stomach and intestine linings, leading to digestive problems and diarrhea. In addition, they increase the risk of red blood cell damage, potentially resulting in anemia due to iron deficiency.

Although the effects are less toxic for dogs than cats, it is crucial to remember that these ingredients are also toxic to dogs. Therefore, avoid feeding garlic and onions to your pets to ensure their well-being.


  • Xylitol is a sweetening chemical added to numerous candies and sweets and is highly toxic for cats and dogs. It causes the release of insulin, the hormone responsible for sugar breakdown in the body. Excessive insulin release can result in a sudden drop in blood sugar levels, known as hypoglycemia.

Hypoglycemia can be extremely dangerous and results in symptoms such as vomiting, lethargy, fatigue, and impaired coordination in animals. If you notice these symptoms after your pet has ingested candies and sweets, immediately consult your veterinarian, as the condition can be fatal if left untreated.

At Autumn Trails and Veterinary Center, we provide you with the best urgent care services that keep your pets healthy and happy, especially in the case of an emergency. We offer our veterinary services in the city of Charlottesville, VA. To book an appointment, contact us at (434) 971-9800.