Things Dogs Really REALLY Can’t Eat

Posted by Raja on January 1st, 2011 — Posted in Gardening, Health, Safety

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Happy New Year to all our blog readers and to all their dogs who are read to!!! Raja here.  I’m doing the first blog of the year… our blog really IS all about me, so I’m starting 2011 off with the first post about safety.

I'm not eating this kalanchoe!

Dear Readers,

There is too much “unresearched heresay” about plant-related products dogs can and can’t eat. We can’t have poinsettias, as one example. Well, who wants to eat poinsettias? NOBODY who is even remotely sane wants to eat poinsettias. And they don’t make a dog sick in and of themselves, it is now discovered. BUT, think about this… how would anybody react to a bellyful of tough leaves? Even humans would be sick if they ate a pile of poinsettias. But they won’t. You can leave them alone with those plants and take your nap. And as for you, puppy, if you are a desperado who will chew on anything to get attention, I guess poinsettias, as well as electrical cords, slippers and area rugs are all out the door.  (If any of you animals ate a poinsettia over the holidays, please comment in and let us know how it went  so I can put poinsettias back on the list if need be.)

The list of things we REALLY can’t eat is a short one.

Grapes, Raisins, Grape Juice, Wine. Dogs should not eat grapes, but if one of us happens to eat one dusty raisin, I think it’s OK. Beware guests who leave half finished glasses of wine around. Most of us won’t touch it, but some of us (you know who you are out there) will.

Onions. Onions eaten in quantity can be extremely toxic and have long term effects. If we get a bite of stew that has onions in it, it’s probably OK. But we should avoid onions, and that includes onion powder in foods.

Xylitol. The humans like this plant-derived sweetener in chewing gum. It’s fine for them. Have you ever smelled a delicious minty-sweet odor coming from a lady’s purse and put your nose in and found a little rectangle wrapped in paper and sneaked away with it to chew it up? Well don’t do that again! Xylitol is dangerous.

Finally, here are two serious, systemic  plant toxins we might be exposed to, but only the weirdest dog would actually nibble them. (Yes, you out there with the crazy eyes- this is for you!)

Kalanchoe. Kalanchoe succulent plants are a huge genus of about 125 species.  The flowering varieties are often sold in supermarkets.  For the demented dogs who gobble anything, kalanchoe is severely dangerous. Vomiting is the least of the trouble, so owners of crazy dogs must not keep these plants around. (Since I eat nothing without being beseeched, we have many of these plants around. But I can be trusted. Can you?)

Oleander. Very pretty landscaping plant and very toxic. Only a lunatic would eat the stiff, tough leaves, but if one of us does, vomiting is the best possible outcome. Most people don’t keep oleander as a house plant, but in southern and perennially temperate latitudes around the world,  oleander is common in landscaping. Don’t get any ideas to grab attention by eating oleander, OK? Eat slippers and rugs instead.

It’s a short list pals. Stay healthy and don’t misbehave in the first days of the New Year when our somewhat dazed humans aren’t watching closely.


In 2011, we plan to share more adventures and tips and we will be introducing my Insight Exclusives- narrated journeys with Raja Cam.  See the world as I do.  You humans might be tempted to get down on all fours.


Comment by Sheryll & Critters.

I did not know any such when I tried to give my darling Rufus grapes, fresh off our three prolific grape vines and he could have cared less (thank the Lord) and so after this, I learned it was very bad for my baby boy.

Posted on January 1, 2011 at 3:27 pm

Comment by Pat&Buttercup

Raja… Thanks for the tips..I am watched like a hawk at home so I never have a chance of eating anything I shouldn’t….U also dark chocolate can be deadly to us pups..I look forward to seeing things from your web cam world!

Posted on January 1, 2011 at 5:32 pm

Comment by Cy, CT & Tasha

Raja, unlike you CT and I like to eat almost anything we can but I totally agree with you, why would I want to eat a poinsettia? My mom keeps a close watch on us because she doesn’t like us to have tummy aches and I know she keeps a really close watch for things that could really make us sick. Thanks for letting us know that not everything we thought was really dangerous is as bad as we thought.

Posted on January 2, 2011 at 9:17 am

Comment by Jesse

Thanks for the tips, Raja, my mom had no idea about the oleander. Good thing we’re too far north to grow it, because I’ll eat anything that doesn’t eat me first.

Posted on January 10, 2011 at 8:48 pm

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