Christmas is a magical time of year for both you and your dog. With lots of  delicious foods being eaten it can be easy to forget that some of these festive treats can actually be harmful to your four-legged pooch.  


Chocolate contains the chemical theobromine and is highly toxic for dogs. The darker the chocolate the more theobromine it contains. Even a small amount can cause you dog to feel unwell and therefore it's important to keep chocolate away from them.

Avoid putting chocolate on or around the Christmas tree and keep those tins of treats out of reach. If you suspect your dog has eaten chocolate seek veterinary advice.

Grapes, mince Pies, Christmas cake and Christmas pudding

Grapes and their dried counterparts (raisins, sultanas and currants) are toxic to dogs. Even a small amount can be dangerous and cause kidney damage. Our classic christmas favourites of mince pies, christmas cakes and christmas puddings should therefore be kept out of reach of furry friends. 

Onions (and garlic, leeks, shallots and chives)

Onions, garlic, leeks, shallots and chives all belong to the Allium species of plants and can cause toxicity, whether uncooked or cooked. Remember these foods are found in your sage and onion stuffing - a staple of christmas dinner. You may not notice for a few days, but onions can damage to your dog's red blood cells resulting in anaemia. These plants can also cause vomiting and diarrhoea for your canine chum so are best avoided.

Macadamia nuts

It's not fully known why but macadamia nuts can cause lethargy, increased body temperature, tremor, lameness and stiffness in dogs. The effects can take a few hours to be apparent and can last for a few days.


Cooked bones such as the ones from in Christmas turkey can splinter easily and damage the inside of your dog's digestive system. In some cases bones could become trapped causing an obstruction. Keep the turkey and leftovers away from your pooch. 

I think my dog has eaten something it shouldn't have. What should I do?

If you think your dog has eaten something it shouldn't have, call your vet without delay. Don't try to make your dog sick as this could cause other problems. If you can, take the wrapper with you to the vets as the ingredients list will help determine the best course of treatment.


Our little disclaimer
This information is intended as a guide and should not be used in an emergency. If you suspect your dog has been poisoned you should contact your veterinary practice immediately.