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Vet Tips: What NOT To Feed Your Dog This Barbecue Season

Vet Tips

At summer barbecues with friends and family, it’s natural that your pet will tag along, but you can go from backyard barbecue to the vet quickly if you are not paying attention. With all the food and smells, your pets may be tempted to join the feast. Here is a list of what not to feed your pet to avoid a trip to the veterinarian.

Meat Bones and Raw Meat

While dogs love the smell of meat, meat bones are bad for them. If the bones are too small, they could potentially swallow them and choke. Even if they are bigger, bones can splinter and enter your dog’s digestive tract, warranting a trip to the local vet.

Additionally, make sure to tell the other guests at your barbecue not to feed your dog any bones, even leftover bones. Make sure to keep garbage cans out of pets’ reach, because determined pets can sometimes find a way into the trash and get to the bones! Raw meat can also be contaminated with bacteria such as Salmonella and E. Coli, which can make your dog very sick; so stick to cooked lean meats without sauce or spices.

Fruit Salad

Many fruits and vegetables are filled with antioxidants that are good for pets, but many vets will recommend you keep fruit salads out of pets’ reach in the event that they are coated with dressing or contain certain toxic ingredients. Grapes, and their byproduct raisins, are highly toxic to dogs. If your dog ingests grapes, call your vet right away to see if your pet needs to come in, because grapes are known to cause kidney failure in dogs. Citric acid from fruit peels and seeds can also cause minor stomach irritation.

Alliums Such as Garlic and Onions

Like grapes and chocolate, foods that are part of the allium family are toxic to dogs. They include garlic, onions, leeks, scallions, and chives. That nixes lots of seasonings and salads. Keep salads that contain onions out of pets’ reach, and don’t let them have a leftover burger topped with onions or scallions. Even burger meat flavored with some garlic powder can be dangerous, so avoid feeding that to your pets.


Processed sugar is not highly toxic but consuming too much can be bad for your pets and could send them to the veterinarian. Foods that are high in sugar and fat can cause intestinal issues, including diarrhea and vomiting. What is most dangerous are desserts with coffee or chocolate. According to Veterinary Partner, these two items contain a toxic compound called methylxanthines, which can wreak havoc on pets’ nervous systems and digestive systems. If your pet ingests large quantities of any derivative of cacao, call your vet immediately.

Seasoned Or Spicy Food

Many seasonings and spices contain ingredients that irritate pets’ stomach lining. As previously mentioned, garlic, onions, and other allium items are toxic. Consuming lots of salt can make your pet dehydrated and cause more frequent urination. Luckily, most seasonings will only irritate your pets’ digestive systems and will not warrant a trip to the vet. Nonetheless, you should still skip giving them food that has any kind of seasoning, butter, or oil on it.

What Pets Can Have

Your pet doesn’t have to be limited to dry food while you enjoy delicious food at your summer barbecue. While grilling, you can set aside some unseasoned lean, boneless meat, such as ground beef or chicken breast. Still avoid giving them meats with high fat and sodium, such as high fat ground meat or hotdogs. While you enjoy your food, you can give canines a dog-designed bone to chew on or grill some vegetables for cats and dogs, as long as you skip the oil, butter, and other seasonings.

Contact A Trusted Vet

If you are in doubt about something that your pet consumed, you can call All Aboard Animal Hospital during our hours of operation. We are a family-owned business providing exceptional, high-quality care for your pets. For more information, give us a call today at (954) 785-7780.


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