We all know that with Easter comes chocolate, cakes, roast dinners and lots of deliciousness…but that’s not the case for our dogs, unfortunately. There are certain foods that are not only unhealthy for our dogs, but are dangerous to them, so we want to make sure you have a dog friendly Easter! Here are a few toxic foods for dogs to watch out for this Easter, and all year round.


dog playing in garden with easter eggs

Chocolate Easter Eggs are poisonous for dogs

Brightly coloured round things can look particularly enticing for your pup! But your dog consuming chocolate, even in small amounts, can be fatal. Cocoa, caffeine and chocolate contain the ingredient theobromine which they can’t metabolise as quickly as we can, so it builds up to toxic levels and in some cases can be fatal. Danger levels depend on the size and health of your dog, the amount consumed and the purity of the chocolate. The darker and purer the chocolate, the more toxic it is for dogs. But no matter what, please keep chocolate out of reach of your dogs at all times. If you suspect they may have consumed any, take them to your vet immediately.

Signs of theobromine poisoning are hyperactivity, muscle tremors, seizures, vomiting, diarrhoea and a racing heart rate. So ensure any Easter delights you’ve got over the weekend are hidden away where your dog can’t reach them!

Check your Easter baskets and avoid hot cross buns

Received a lovely Easter basket of treats? Make sure you check it for the following ingredients and if required hide it away out of reach from your four-legged friend.

GRAPE FAMILY – Grapes, sultanas, raisins and currants are all toxic to dogs. Again, the severity of danger to your dog depends on their size and health. As few as four or five grapes could kill a 5kg dog. Signs of poisoning are lethargy, vomiting, diarrhoea, excessive thirst and urination and if untreated, it leads to kidney failure. Make sure you keep your hot cross buns, fruit cake and the likes out of their reach.

XYLITOL – Any products containing xylitol (sweetener) will cause liver failure to your dogs. Xylitol can be found in sweetener for your tea or coffee, chewing gum, some toothpastes, and in some brands of peanut butter. In fact, lots of processed foods contain it. Early symptoms to watch for are Lethargy, lack of muscle coordination and vomiting.

MACADAMIA NUTS – These nuts contain a toxin that affects your dog’s muscles and nervous system. The symptoms display as panting, swollen limbs and overall weakness of the body. you might find these nuts in biscuits and cereal bars.

Don’t share your roast dinner with your dog

Looking forward to a scrumptious roast dinner at Easter? Be careful not to share with your pup, as some ingredients aren’t safe for your dog to eat.

COOKED BONES – Giving a raw, uncooked bone to your dog is fine under supervision, but if the bone has been cooked it becomes brittle and can break and splinter. If your dog consumes a cooked bone and it breaks or splinters inside them, it could perforate the gut, which can be fatal. Carrots are a safe and healthy alternative – and perfect for Easter!

ONIONS – The effects of a dog consuming a large amount of onion whether cooked or raw can ultimately lead to haemolytic anaemia, which is the bursting of red blood cells. Signs of onion ingestion are lethargy, weakness, lack of muscle coordination, pale gums, red or brown coloured urine and hypersalivation. Sometimes vomiting or diarrhoea may occur.

Terrier sits by spring flowers

‘Chews’ wisely this Easter

Check what your dog is chewing on this Spring (and all year round!) to ensure a dog friendly Easter!

RAWHIDE CHEWS – Ingredients: LEATHER. It is not dehydrated meat, but a heavily chemically treated by-product of the leather industry. The leather has a chemical bath to help preserve the product. Some of the chemicals used throughout the process that showed up when tested include sodium sulphide liming, bleach, ash-lye, hydrogen peroxide, glue, titanium oxide, lead, arsenic, mercury, chromium salts and formaldehyde. Avoid at all costs!

Some chews can also get stuck in the oesophagus or other parts of the digestive tract causing digestive irritation* or even a trip to the vets – avoid at all costs! There are plenty of alternative, safe chewy treats for you to give to your dog instead, ask your vet for advice if you’re not sure what is best for your dog.

SPRING FLOWERS – It is always a delight to see greenery and flowers come back to life after winter and you may wish to brighten your house with a spring bloom. They are also perfect for an impromptu Spring photoshoot backdrop for your dog’s Instagram! However, some common spring bulbs and flowers can be toxic if consumed by your dog**. Below are six common springtime bulbs that can be dangerous to dogs, be sure to keep your dog supervised around any of these flowers in your garden or on walks.


Harmful flowers for dogs:

– Bluebells

– Daffodils

– Hyacinth

– Iris

– Lilies

– Tulips

Don’t forget to enjoy your Easter break with your pup!

All these foods to be aware of sounds rather scary, but in reality, it just involves a little common sense, a certain amount of investigation and a bit of awareness to avoid any harm coming to your dogs. So kick back, play safe and enjoy your Easter break!


* Pets WebMD – Rawhide

** Guide Dogs – Dogs and Easter



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