By Romita Dey

We pet parents never think of restricting our dogs from eating certain food items; we love them so much that we just want to pamper them with every type of food in the world! However, we need to be extra careful with our fur babies because they have no idea about what is good and what is bad for them. And unlike our human babies, these babies eat anything we offer to them!

When they place so much of trust in us, shouldn’t we be careful about what we put inside their mouths? I am sure every pet parent would agree with me here!

There are lots of food items, which can be fatal for your dog. Learning about them will not just save your pet, but will save you from unnecessary headaches and heartaches. Here’s a list to avoid or offer with caution:



Any drink containing alcohol, whether beer or wine, is not meant for your dog. Even small amounts can cause vomiting, depression, diarrhea etc.

Garlic and Onions
Garlic and onions can destroy your dog’s red blood cells so keeping these two food items away from your dog is the best policy

Tea and Coffee


It’s. not just tea or coffee; anything containing caffeine is not good for your dog. If given in large quantities, it can prove to be fatal for your dog.

Raisins and grapes
Who would think that these two delicious food items can be dangerous for their dog? It is sad but true. Grapes and Raisins are no good for your dog because they can cause kidney failure.

Milk and dairy
There are varied opinions about giving milk and dairy products to dogs. Some people believe that if diluted with water, milk can be easily digested by dogs. Some, on the other hand, totally avoid giving milk to their dogs once they grow up. We asked a few pet parents to share their perspective.

Nandini Banerjee, 30, Calcutta

cookie n brownie

Nandini with Cookie and Brownie

An avid dog rescuer and foster parent, Nandini is parent to two rescued Indian dogs, Brownie and Cookie, and swears by milk as the perfect food to them! This is what she had to say about giving milk to her dogs on a daily basis. “I do give my Indidogs milk every morning. Earlier we had two German Shepherds whom we used to only feed milk and rotis, and they lived for 21 years. Even my aunt’s dog Brandy (Indian) was 19 years old when she left us. Milk was her favourite. Milk is not bad for dogs but one should know when and how much to offer to your dogs”

Prasenjit Datta, 49, Barasat


Pagu eats milk and chapati without problems. Milk is served cold. Cottage cheese is also good for her.

Parent/foster parent to five rescued Indian dogs, Bhulo, Pagu, Chagu, Buri and Pupu, Mr Datta firmly believes in feeding his dogs cottage cheese every day without fail. Here is what he had to say “My dogs eat milk and chapati without problems. But the milk served is always cold or else they would get acidity. Onions, Ginger, garlic, salt and chocolates are absolutely toxic for dogs. What is very good for the skin is cottage cheese. It turned the dull brown coat of my dog, Bhulo, to bright copper.”

Danielle DSilva, 25, Bangalore
Danielle, “big sister” to a Great Dane-Indian mix, Cleopatra, has a very scientific explanation about giving milk to dogs.


”Actually the only reason they say milk is bad for dogs is because most dogs lack the enzyme to breakdown milk resulting in an upset stomach. But there are clearly dogs (like my own Indian-Great Dane mix) who love milk and milk products. Also if your dog can take milk, it is best to dilute with water. And to the list of banned food items I’d like to add less sugar, less refined oil (1 tbsp of olive oil is very good for their coat and joints when added to their food)and less processed food.



Many people are already aware that chocolate is very bad for dogs. It contains “thebromine” which is very dangerous for dogs and can cause severe heart palpitations, seizures, tremors and even death.


Sounds surprising? But it is true! Bones can be very dangerous for dogs because they can choke on it and die.

Plums and peaches

There is only problem with these fruits – their seeds. We humans know how to leave out the seeds and eat the fruit. However, dogs don’t and that leaves them vulnerable to eating the seeds and causing stomach upset.

Other food items which should be never given to your dog are as follows:

  • Chewing gums (causes blood sugar to drop to an alarming level)
  • Fat trimmings (can cause Pancreatitis)
  • Raw Eggs (Might cause food poisoning)
  • Raw Fish and meat (Same as raw eggs)
  • Salt (May cause excessive urination and make your dog very thirsty)
  • Sugar (Can lead to obesity, diabetes and dental problems)
  • Yeast Dough (Can cause swelling of the abdomen)
  • Baking soda and baking powder (Can cause toxicity)
  • Human Medicine (medicines meant for us should never be given to your dog unless advised by your vet)
  • cough-mixture

Kishore Upadhyay, CCT Clinic, Kolkata

“Sweets are a complete no-no for dogs. Dogs might be like your children, but they are not blessed with a digestive system like ours. Some breeds like Labradors and Golden Retrievers are especially susceptible to becoming diabetic if given sweets on a daily basis.”

A sweet once a week should be fine. You should be feeding your dog food and not love. Other banned items include chocolate, onions, garlic, alcohol, oil and salt. Fruits are okay for your dog but you must be careful about fruits with seeds like watermelon.”

“Accidentally consuming even one seed can prove to be a huge problem for dog. We do have a chart at our clinic explaining which food is good for your dog and which food is not. “

Romita Dey   Romita Dey is a blogger and ardent dog lover based in Kolkata