Toxic Food for Dogs: 9 Super Bowl™ Party Foods That Are Dangerous for Pets to Eat by Dr. Alysper M. Cormanes
With the upcoming Super Bowl™ on February 12 between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles, it might be hard to say no to a wagging tail and puppy dog eyes begging for food during game time. But some foods can be dangerous for our pets to eat. Here are nine foods you should avoid giving your pet during your football gatherings (or any time):
1. Chicken Wings
Chicken is usually safe to be given to dogs. It is considered a palatable source of protein for them, though it can also be a common allergen for dogs that have sensitive skin. Chicken wings are only safe provided that you strip off the outer coating, especially if it has been infused with strong or spicy flavors from any sauces. Most chicken wing sauces are jam packed with tons of spices and herbs that can not only irritate your dog’s palate and smell, but some of those spices may be harmful, like garlic and onion powder. Lastly, never give your dogs the chicken bones. They may look small and harmless, but if they break and are swallowed at the wrong angle, that sharp bone edge could lodge somewhere and could spell a whole lot of trouble.
A plain tortilla chip is generally safe to be given to your dogs, but only as an occasional very small snack. There are a variety of nachos that are available in the market so always be aware of what kind you have before you even think about giving any to your dog. Flavored nachos are bad for your dogs as they usually contain harmful herbs and spices and a lot of salt. Dogs do not have the same threshold as humans do with the amount of salt we can safely have and can develop salt toxicosis, especially breeds that are smaller. Especially avoid the nacho dips and sauces that are harmful for the same reason, cheese-based ones are especially bad for dogs that are lactose intolerant and may cause diarrhea and/or vomiting.
Photo: Sheet pan nachos
Dogs can have a little bit of pizza and be perfectly fine but it is not a good choice for them and should never be given as meals. The pizza crust itself is OK to give, but should be skipped for dogs with dietary restrictions pertaining to fat and caloric intake. What makes pizza bad for dogs is that the main components of pizza toppings are potentially harmful to them. Onions, garlic, chives, shallots and leeks which cause toxicity in dogs by damaging red blood cell membranes. Pepperoni has been shown to cause gastroenteritis and salt toxicosis in large amounts. The pizza sauces often contain too many spices for dogs to safely consume, and the dairy can cause some stomach upset in dogs that are sensitive to lactose.
Photo: 5-ingredient Cuban pizza
Cookies are bad for dogs because the usual main ingredients are toxic for them, not to mention the high amounts of sugar and calories which can lead to obesity in the long run. Chocolate can cause theobromine toxicity which leads to stomach upset in the form of profuse vomiting and/or diarrhea. Raisins have been shown to cause kidney failure in dogs. Nuts that are considered toxic for them include walnuts, macadamias and pistachios. Creams and dairy-based toppings can also upset your dog’s stomach. Overall, there is much more risk and no benefit to feeding your dog cookies that we usually have, but there are a lot of commercially available pet safe cookies that can be given to your dogs as an alternative.
5. Burgers and Sliders
Burgers and sliders are a good snack for your dogs, provided that you give them the plainest most simple kind, they honestly won’t mind! Strip your burger of sauces and condiments, onions and cheese, and thoroughly cook the meat and you are good to go. Remember that they can’t have as much salt as humans do so don’t give too much, but you can make your dogs their own lean, unsalted, burger patties just so that you can have more leeway with giving them more portions.
Photo: 3-cheese Cajun burgers
Avocado contains a substance called persin, which is toxic to dogs in large amounts. Avocado prepared with the onions, herbs and spices incorporated into it make guacamole a bad snack to give your dogs, so it is best you don’t give any to your pets. The avocado pits are an especially dangerous choking hazard for them as well.
Photo: Chipotle's famous guacamole
Chili is a bad choice to be served to your dog because it almost always will contain herbs that are toxic to them, onion, garlic and chili powder, which contains a chemical called capsaicin, that will cause irritation and a burning sensation for your dogs and they will eventually have stomach problems such as abdominal pain, diarrhea and gas.
Photo: 30-minute beef chili
8. Potato Skins
Potato skins can be given to your dogs but in moderation only, never give them in frequent and large amounts. They contain oxalates, and these oxalates can cause trouble for your pet in the long run because this may lead to kidney problems in the form of crystals in their bladder or urinary tract. The usual sauces and topping that are usually paired with potato skins are equally as bad as the potato skins. They are also harmful in the same way it is for humans as they offer dogs zero nutritional value and are high in trans-fat and salt.
Photo: Crispy baked potato skins
9. Pigs in a Blanket
Pigs in a blanket can be a good snack to give your dogs, provided that you are aware of how much you allow them to have. They are usually made with a sausage wrapped in bacon or pastry. These ingredients make it very high in fat, calories and salt. You can easily give your begging puppy a bit too much and it can lead to pancreatitis because they will have a harder time digesting the fatty contents. Dogs that are obese or have dietary restrictions should skip this snack entirely.
Photo: Pigs in a blanket
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