Everyday items that could be deadly for your beloved pet dog

Australians are a nation of dog lovers and as much as we do our best to keep our beloved fur babies healthy, there are some everyday items in the home that could pose a deadly threat to them.

Here's a list of just some of the items you should watch out for.


As much as we enjoy sharing the occasional treat with our pets, there are some common foods that could make your dog seriously ill.

A dog resting on a woman's legs.
Pet owners need to mindful of the many everyday items in our home which could be dangerous for our furry friends. Source: Getty Images

Chocolate and Coffee

While they are definitely two of life’s pleasures, chocolate and coffee could make your dog very sick if they have any.

Chocolate, in particular, is an extremely toxic food for dogs due to the caffeine and the stimulant chemical, theobromine contained in it.

Both substances are difficult for dogs to metabolize and this may lead to a build up in their body.

If your dog does manage to get its paws on some chocolate, it can make them very sick, causing vomiting, and elevated body temperature.

These symptoms can progress to more serious problems like heart attacks, internal bleeding seizures and death.

Woman biting into a chocolate bar.
Humans enjoy eating chocolate but it can prove toxic for dogs. Source: Getty Images

The severity of the side effects depends on the size of your dog and the quantity, as well as what type of chocolate has been ingested-The darker the chocolate the more toxic.

Unsweetened cooking chocolate and cocoa powder are some of the most toxic food varieties for dogs.

Coffee beans, grounds and brewed coffee should also be kept well away from dogs as caffeine is a particularly toxic chemical for dogs.

Ingestion of even a small amount of coffee can be life threatening in small dogs so be very careful how you store your coffee and discard coffee grounds.

Grapes and Raisins

Whilst healthy and nutritious for humans, grapes and raisins have moderate to high levels of toxicity when fed to dogs. If your pet manages to find and eat some, you need to get them to the vet immediately.

Different levels of toxicity vary from dog to dog and common side effects range from vomiting and diarrhoea to kidney failure.

Poisoning can also occur from baked goods containing raisins, such as biscuits, cakes and snack bars.

A dog lying on a bed.
Dogs love spending time with us in our homes, but they also face some hidden hazards. Source: Getty Images

Onions and Garlic

Onions and garlic are another very common plant found in kitchens and both are incredibly toxic for dogs. If eaten, both onions and garlic can damage red blood cells in dogs, leading to anemia.

Generally, the stronger the onion, the stronger the toxicity. Garlic also contains compounds that are poisonous to dogs and if enough is eaten, is actually more dangerous to your dog than onions.

In serious cases involving onions and garlic your dog may have to undergo a blood transfusion.

Woman does yoga with her dog.
Dogs love to copy what we do, but they shouldn't be eating a lot of food that we enjoy. Source: Getty Images

Toothpaste and Chewing Gum

These common and seemingly harmless products could be deadly to your dog because they often contain an ingredient called xylitol.

This sugar substitute which is actually a form of alcohol, is extremely toxic to dogs and symptoms can be seen in as little as thirty minutes.

Household Plants and Flowers

Indoor plants have well known health benefits and everyone loves fresh flowers, but certain popular varieties could be deadly to a curious puppy.

Some of the more toxic plants include, the Autumn crocus, peace lily, aloe vera, tulips, daffodils, azaleas and the sago palm.

A Sago palm.
Sago palms are frequently seem in homes throughout Australia but they can be fatal for dogs. Source: Getty Images

If you’re not sure, always check for pet safety before bringing any vegetation into the house or planting your garden.

Dog Toys

A well designed toy can keep a dog entertained for hours but there are some that may cause permanent injury and should be avoided.

Rubber or latex balls, with only one hole, have been known to become suctioned to a dog’s mouth, causing extensive tissue damage.

A woman playing with a dog.
Some dog toys can actually be dangerous for dogs. Source: Getty Images

Small toys your dog is able to swallow can also be very dangerous as this can result in an intestinal blockage.

Rawhide bones are another very popular item people give dogs to keep them entertained.

However, if your dog happens to chew off and swallow a large piece this could be fatal as the bone absorbs water within the stomach and can’t be passed.

Chip and Snack Bags

Dogs will stop at nothing to score a tasty treat, even if that means going through the rubbish and recycling.

A relatively common, but less known household hazard for dogs are empty or discarded chips, bread and snack bags.

Sadly, dogs suffocate in these bags every day yet most people are unaware how dangerous this common item can be.

An open packet of potato chips.
Chip bags are surprisingly dangerous for dogs. Source: Getty Images

If your dog comes across a bag with some tasty crumbs still in it, their first instinct is to stick their snout inside to eat the contents.

As they breathe in, their head becomes stuck and they can suffocate within a few minutes.

This can happen to any dog, regardless of size, age and strength so it’s important to make sure any food bags that may be appealing to your dog are not left around the house and all rubbish and recycling is kept well out of reach.

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