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Toxic food for dogs and cats during the festive season

Dog sniffing a Christmas tree shaped cookie

It’s that festive, food-filled time of year. There are treats on every table, treats under the tree, and long lunches that send you to sleep – it’s fun, but can sometimes leave you with a belly ache. Unfortunately, dogs, cats, and rich foods can be a recipe for much more than a tummy ache, depending on the food type.

We do understand it can be extremely tempting to sneak a treat under the table to your furry family members, but some food can be really toxic to your dog or cat. To help you stay vigilant, here’s a list of naughty and nice festive foods for your pet.

The naughty list: keep your pet away from these foods

‘Naughty’ or toxic food for your cat or dog doesn’t always mean a trip to the vet, but it can leave your pet feeling less than comfortable during a joyous season. Make sure you contact your local vet if you see your pet acting out of character, or if you know your pet has eaten a toxic quantity of a particular food, or a toxic food type.

Not all the food on this list is strictly a Christmas treat, but they’re certainly found on most platters during the festive season.


Chocolate is toxic to your pets


The cacao seeds that give chocolate its delicious taste also contain a compound called theobromine, which is toxic to cats and dogs and, if consumed, cause serious illness or death. Symptoms of toxicity can take 6-12 hours.


Raisins and Grapes can be fatally toxic to dogs

Raisins and Grapes

Yes, this does include your Christmas pudding! The raisins and grapes found in pudding can be fatally toxic to dogs, even in small quantities.
Ingestion of onions can contribute to stomach upsets and even cause Anaemia in your pets


Ingestion of onions can contribute to stomach upsets and even cause Anaemia.
Under-Cooked Meat can contain e-coli and other bacterial dangers.

Under-cooked meat

Just like humans, your pets can suffer the effects of eating under-cooked meat, which can contain e-coli and other bacterial dangers. Under-cooked chicken can be especially toxic to your pet.

Pork products contain a high amount of fat, which can lead to Pancreatitis

Pork, bacon and ham

Some pork products contain a high amount of fat, which can lead to illnesses like pancreatitis. Statistics show there is an increase of pancreatitis cases in dogs at Christmas time.
Cooked Bones spinter and can cause intrenal harm to your pets

Cooked Bones

These are dangerous as they tend to splinter when chewed by dogs, causing damage to their teeth, mouth, throat and intestines (not to mention their high calorie content of the bone marrow).
Alcohol is very toxic to pets and can even cause seizures


While it may seem obvious, allowing our pets to consume any alcohol is dangerous. It can cause alcohol toxicity and even seizures. So please, leave the alcohol to the humans.
Dogs and Cats can't process dairy. It can lead to stomach upsets

Milk and Dairy Products

It may surprise many to learn that dogs’ bodies were not designed to process dairy. Consuming dairy can cause stomach upsets, vomiting and diarrhea.
Lollies can interfere with your pets metabolism and cause diabetes


Full of sugar, and even worse for our pets than they can be for us, lollies can disrupt your pets metabolism, and when consumed in high amounts, can even cause diabetes.

The nice list: treat your pet to these goodies during the holiday season

Unfortunately, the ‘nice’ list isn’t as long as the ‘naughty’ list. Christmas food feasts are a human tradition after all, but in moderation, and with careful preparation, you can let your dog or cat eat these leftovers.


Plain leftover Beef or Chicken is a delicious treat

Leftover beef or chicken

As long as the meat has been de-boned, this leftover can be a delicious treat for your dog or cat. Be sure to feed this meat in moderation, and without any of the food on the naughty list. 
Fruit and Vegies are healthy treats for dogs

Fruit and vegetables

Small amounts of apples, oranges, bananas and watermelon are all healthy treats for dogs (especially when kept in the fridge and given on a hot day!). Before you feed any fruit or veggies to your pooch, just be sure the seeds are removed first, and avoid stone fruits. Carrot sticks, green beans, cucumber, pumpkin and zucchini are also great snack options.

Key Christmas dinner advice

Limit the chances of your pet being fed from the table by removing them from the area whenever you're eating. Pop your pet outside or in another room while you're enjoying your meal, to avoid the temptation of throwing them a sneaky treat. Doing this will also reduce the chance of your pet picking up bad habits, like begging at your feet any time you bring dinner to the table.

Note: If your canine pal has been placed on a prescription diet by their veterinarian that restricts them from eating certain foods outside the diet, please follow the vet’s guidelines.

PETstock’s 2020 Christmas treat range

We know you don’t want your pet to miss out on the festivities, and they don’t have to! You can purchase a whole range of delicious dog and cat friendly treats online or in your local PETstock store. And this year we have released a whole range of Christmas inspired goodies that are the perfect stocking stuffers for your dog!

Xmas WAG Kangaroo Tail Candy Cane

Xmas WAG Kangaroo Tail Candy Cane

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Variety Christmas Box

Variety Christmas Box

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Christmas Bon Bon

Christmas Bon Bon

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Purr Puree Tuna & Fibre Hairball Cat Treat Sachets

Purr Puree Tuna & Fibre Hairball Cat Treat Sachets

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WAG Braided Bully Stick Dog Treat Small

Wag Braided Bully Stick Dog Treat Small

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Inaba Chicken Wraps Tuna With Scallop Churu Bites Cat Treats

Inaba Chicken Wraps Tuna With Scallop Churu Bites Cat Treats

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