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What Foods Are & Are Not Safe for Your Pet

Sunny, warm days mean it’s time to fire up the grill. While pets will want to join in the fun — and probably snaffle some scraps — it's crucial to remember that not all BBQ foods are safe for dogs and cats. Here’s a list to keep handy all summer long.

If you think your pet has consumed harmful foods, you can call our free 24/7 urgent care line at 212-624-BOND at any hour for medical care advice. You can also click the link below to find your local clinic's hours and location.

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BBQ Foods that are Safe for Pets (In Small Amounts or as a Treat!)

  1. Grilled Chicken: If your pet tolerates it, lean, boneless, unseasoned chicken is a great source of protein. Make sure there’s no marinade with onions, garlic, or spices, which can be harmful to animals.

  2. Salmon: A fantastic source of omega-3 fatty acids, grilled salmon (plain & boneless) is a healthy boost. Ensure it's thoroughly cooked before sharing.

  3. Sweet & Regular Potatoes: Slice potatoes into bite-sized pieces and cook until soft, with no seasoning for a nice treat that provides dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals.

  4. Apples, Bananas, Blueberries, Strawberries: These fruits offer plenty of vitamins, minerals & antioxidants for your pet.

  5. Plain Burger Patty: Feel free to prep a seasonless, no-salt patty for your pup — it’s a tasty, summer-y way to get a good amount of protein.

  6. Watermelon: Cold watermelon makes a refreshing and hydrating treat for pets. Remove the seeds and rind, and offer small pieces — not too much, as it’s high in sugar.

  7. Zucchini: Summer squash can be sliced and grilled as a low-calorie snack for your furry friends. Cook until tender and allow it to cool before offering it to your pet.

  8. Carrots: Grilling carrots can enhance their natural sweetness, creating a nutritious snack that dogs and cats enjoy. Be sure to cut them into small pieces before offering.

BBQ Foods that are NOT Safe to Feed Your Pet

  1. Onions & Garlic: These common BBQ ingredients contain compounds that can damage red blood cells in pets, leading to anemia. Keep dishes seasoned with onion or garlic powder, as well as any cooked onions or garlic, away from your pets.

  2. Grapes & Raisins: These fruits can cause kidney failure in dogs, and their toxicity is not limited to the fruit itself but also includes foods that include them, like raisin bread, grape juice, and even grape-infused marinades.

  3. Corn on the Cob: While delicious, don’t give your pet corn on the cob — there’s a risk that they will choke on it, and ingestion of the cob can cause an intestinal blockage that could be serious and even fatal.

  4. Avocado: While healthy for humans, avocados contain persin, which can be toxic to dogs and cats. Keep them away from guacamole, as well as any avocado-based dressings or sauces. And watch out for the pit, which can be a choking hazard.

  5. Chocolate: Found in many dessert items and even some BBQ sauces, chocolate contains theobromine, which is toxic to pets. Keep all chocolate-based products out of your pet's reach.

  6. Alcohol: Alcoholic beverages can cause severe intoxication, coma, and even death in pets. Don’t leave any alcoholic drinks unattended during BBQ gatherings.

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