Holiday Foods Your Pet Should Never Eat

The holidays are almost here. When you sit down to enjoy a festive meal with your loved ones, it’s tempting to share a few morsels with your pet. It’s best to reconsider—several common holiday foods can prove harmful! Learn more below from a Pleasanton, CA veterinarian.

Onions, Garlic, Chives

Onions and garlic contain thiosulfates, harmful chemicals that can cause red blood cells to burst in a pet’s system, potentially leading to life-threatening anemia in large enough amounts. Related foods like chives, leeks, scallions, and shallots can also cause serious problems. Don’t allow your pet to eat onions or related foods in any form, or foods that contain onions.

Grapes and Raisins

It’s not known exactly why grapes and their dried counterparts are toxic to certain pets. It even seems that some pets can consume grapes and raisins without experiencing any ill effects. With that being said, it’s simply not worth the risk! Grapes and raisins can cause symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea, lethargy, and sudden kidney failure—keep your animal friend far away to be safe.

Sweet Treats

Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, chemicals that aren’t good for pets. This goes for chocolate of all types—dark, milk, semi-sweet, baking chocolate, white chocolate, powdered versions, etc. Candy is another no-no, as it’s often sweetened with an artificial sugar called xylitol that can lead to diarrhea and vomiting, seizures, and worse in very small amounts. Keep a close eye on all sweet treats this holiday season so that your pet can’t chow down.


Did you know that alcohol affects pets in the same way it affects us? Thanks to a pet’s non-existent tolerance and small size, though, alcohol poisoning can set in after only a very small amount is ingested. Trouble breathing, uncoordinated movements, vomiting, and collapse and death can occur if a pet isn’t treated promptly! Don’t leave any alcoholic beverages unattended, and never feed your pet foods cooked with alcohol (rum cakes and the like).

Fatty Foods

Too much fatty, rich, or buttery foods at one time can lead to a serious case of acute pancreatitis, which can be deadly to your pet if it isn’t treated quickly. That’s why it’s important to limit the table scraps during your holiday meal—make sure guests know the protocol, too.

Your Pleasanton, CA vet is here to help with all of your pet-care needs. Give us a call today!

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