Can I Feed my Dog my “Human Food"?

Can I Feed my Dog my “Human Food"?


All dog parents will know it’s hard to resist those begging puppy-dog eyes when you’re cooking up a delicious meal or trying to enjoy the fruits of your labour at the dinner table. While it may be tempting to share your food with your four-legged friend, it may not be safe to do so. And, as always, our pets’ safety should be our top priority.

While there are some “human foods” that are safe for our dogs to enjoy, others can cause serious harm and even result in death. So before you pass that plate or scrape out the leftovers into the bowl, make sure you know what is safe and what should be kept far out of reach.

Human Foods that are Toxic to Dogs

Grapes and Raisins
Hold off on the hot cross buns! Even just a small amount of grapes or raisins can result in long-term kidney damage and/or kidney failure.

While this should go without saying, we like to cover our bases: never give your pets alcohol! Since animals are much smaller than humans, the effects of alcohol are much more dangerous to them; a small dose can cause heart arrhythmia, dangerously low blood pressure, and comas.

Garlic, Onions & Chives
There's something irresistible about the fragrance of garlic and onions cooking, but whether they are dried, raw, or cooked, they should not be given to dogs! The onion family can cause gastrointestinal irritation and blood cell damage, and the scary part is that symptoms may take a few days to appear. Since most gravies contain onion and garlic (and a lot of salt that is also bad for puppers), it’s best to stick to scientifically-developed sauces for dogs if you want to offer them a flavour boost.

Delicious and healthy for humans, toxic to dogs (and birds!). Avos contain a substance called persin that results in vomiting and diarrhoea.

Cooked Bones
While it may seem natural to “give a dog a bone”, they can’t just go ahead and chomp on any old bone. Cooked bones can easily splinter into small pieces that cut the mouth or internal organs, get stuck in the throat, or cause intestinal blockages. If you want to satisfy that urge to chew, rather stick to chewy treats and raw treated bones that have been developed with dog safety in mind, or good old-fashioned chew toys.

The artificial sweetener, xylitol, is one of the most dangerous “human food” substances for our four-legged friends. When ingested, it will cause hypoglycaemia which could then lead to liver failure, seizures, blood clotting, and, ultimately, death.

Chocolate, Coffee & Caffeine
These products all contain methylxanthines – a substance that can lead to vomiting, diarrhoea, seizures, abnormal heart rhythms, tremors, and even death. It’s also important to note that dark chocolate is more toxic than white chocolate.

Human Foods that are Safe for Dogs

Of course, we will always recommend that you feed your dog (and all pets for that matter) food and treats that have been scientifically formulated for them and their bodies. But there are some other human foods that are completely safe and healthy:


  • Apples & pears (without the core & seeds)

  • Oranges (in small amounts)

  • Bananas (without the peel)

  • Blueberries, blackberries & strawberries

  • Cantaloupes

  • Mangos (without the pip)

  • Peaches (without the pip)

  • Pineapples

  • Watermelons (without the seeds)


  • Carrots

  • Cucumber

  • Celery

  • Green beans

  • Pumpkin & butternut

  • Potato & sweet potato

  • Mielies (cut off the cob)


  • Eggs (cooked)

  • Chicken, lamb, beef, pork turkey, fish (cooked, skinless, boneless, no fat, plain)

  • Peanut butter (unsalted & unsweetened)

  • Oatmeal

  • Rice (cooked, plain)

If you ever feel unsure whether or not your pooch should be eating something, it’s always safer to err on the side of caution. Especially since we have so many other delicious, tasty, and beneficial treats for them to munch on.