Feeding your dogs human food can be tricky! Below is a helpful list of things to and to not feed our Shih Tzu's

I have a lot of people ask me what foods their dogs can and cannot have. 

I have put together a little list here below of the things your dog should not have, what do to if they ingest things they should not and of course what things they can have. These are things I have learned over the years by finding out the hard way and also from my Vet Dr. Anderson (Animal Crackers Veterinarian Hospital in West Jordan Utah) Of Course always consult with your Vet before giving any human food to your doggy. This just my little helpful list of do’s and don’ts. 

As Always call or text me anytime if you have any questions whatsoever, 801-634-7233 I am more than willing to help you at any time. I do not know it all because I am not a Vet, but I have been doing this for so long I have learned a lot over the years and can give you my best advice. 


Foods that are poisonous, toxic or fatal to your Shih Tzu:

Avocados: Can cause only mild gastric upset in dogs, the skin, leaves, seed and bark of the fruit are much more problematic, containing a toxic chemical known as persin.

Garlic and Onions: Can create anemia in dogs, pale gums, elevated heart rate, weakness, and collapsing, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, depression, and dehydration, pale mucous membranes, rapid breathing, lethargy, weakness, jaundice, and dark colored urine

Chocolate: The problem in chocolate is theobromine. It's in all kinds of chocolate, even white chocolate. The most dangerous types are dark chocolate and unsweetened baking chocolate. Chocolate can cause a dog to vomit and have diarrhea. It can also cause heart problems, tremors, seizures, and death. Methylxanthines found in chocolate stop a dog’s metabolic process.

Grapes and Raisins: can cause kidney failure in dogs. And just a small amount can make a dog sick. Vomiting over and over is an early sign. Within a day, your dog will get sluggish and depressed.

Caffeine: Caffeine can be fatal.  Watch out for coffee and tea, even the beans and the grounds. Keep your dog away from cocoa, chocolate, colas, and energy drinks. Caffeine is also in some cold medicines and pain killers. Think your dog had caffeine? Watch for restlessness, fast breathing, and muscle twitches.

Cherries: Choke cherry, Black cherry and cherry laurel contain cyanogenic glycosides. All parts of these plants other than the ripe pulp around the seeds are considered toxic and contain cyanide. Cyanide inhibits cytochrome oxidase, an enzyme necessary for cellular oxygen transport, preventing appropriate oxygen uptake by cells. When ingested in toxic amounts, clinical signs of dilated pupils, difficulty breathing, inadequate oxygen levels, bright red gums, shock, and death can be seen.

Fat Trimmings and Bones: Fat trimmed from meat, both cooked and uncooked, can cause pancreatitis in dogs. And, even though it seems natural to give a dog a bone, she can choke on it. Bones can also splinter and block or cause cuts in your dog's digestive system.

Macadamia nuts: These are some of the most poisonous foods for dogs. Macadamia nuts, part of the Protaceae family, can cause vomiting, increased body temperature, inability to walk, lethargy, and vomiting. Even worse, they can affect the nervous system.

Mushrooms: Most mushrooms can cause gastrointestinal irritation. This is the most common syndrome and is rarely fatal. Vomiting and diarrhea generally develop within six hours of ingestion. The upset stomach lasts about 24 hours and requires minimal veterinary care.

Persimmons, Peaches, and Plums: The problem with these fruits is the seeds or pits. Seeds from persimmons can cause problems in a dog's small intestine. They can also block his intestines. That can also happen if a dog eats the pit from a peach or plum. Peach and plum pits also have cyanide, which is poisonous to people and dogs. People know not to eat them. Dogs don't.

Raw Meat and Fish: Like raw eggs, raw meat and fish can have bacteria that causes food poisoning. Some fish such as salmon, trout, shad, or sturgeon can also have a parasite that causes "fish disease" or "salmon poisoning disease." It's treatable, but get help right away. The first signs are vomiting, fever, and big lymph nodes. Fully cook the fish to kill the parasite.

Salt: Some salt is okay, but symptoms of too much salt include vomiting, diarrhea, depression, tremors, high temperature, and seizures. It may even cause death.

Green potatoes: Never let your dog have a potato that is green, Glycoalkaloids, which are nerve toxins, can develop only in the stems, shoots and green parts of the skin. This can cause vomiting, diarrhea, indigestion and cause your dog to be very lethargic.

Fruit seeds and pits in general should be avoided: Those that are not toxic often present choking hazards

Certain Nuts: Walnuts, Pecans, Macadamia nuts, Pistachio’s, Hickory nuts and Almonds. All can cause gastric intestinal issues, blockage, and tears in esophagus, upset stomach, neurological problems, seizures and pancreatitis.

Mold: Ingestion of moldy food from the garbage or a compost pile puts dogs at risk for toxicity due to tremorgenic mycotoxins. These toxins may be found in moldy bread, pasta, cheese, nuts, or other decaying matter like compost. Signs of eating moldy food include vomiting, agitation, walking as if they are drunk, tremors, seizures, and severe secondary hyperthermia. Signs may persist from hours to days, but typically resolve within 24-48 hours with aggressive veterinary treatment.

Milk and Dairy Products: it may be tempting to share your ice cream with your dog. Instead, give her an ice cube. Milk and milk-based products can cause diarrhea and other digestive problems for your pup. They can also trigger food allergies, which can cause her to itch.

Cooking Products: Lots of things found on your kitchen shelves can hurt your dog. Baking powder and baking soda are both highly toxic. So are nutmeg and other spices. Keep food high enough to be out of your dog’s reach and keep pantry doors closed.

Alcohol: Just a little beer, liquor, wine, or food with alcohol can be bad. It can cause vomiting, diarrhea, coordination problems, breathing problems, coma, even death. And the smaller your dog, the worse it can be.

Your Meds: Dogs shouldn't take people medicine. It's can make them very sick. Just as you do for your kids, keep all medicines out of your dog’s reach. And, never give your dog any over-the-counter medicine unless your vet tells you to. Ingredients such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen are common in pain relievers and cold medicine. And, they can be deadly for your dog.

Cinnamon: Cinnamon and its oils can irritate the inside of pets’ mouths, making them uncomfortable and sick. It can lower a dog’s blood sugar too much and can lead to diarrhea, vomiting, increased, or decreased heart rate and even liver disease. If they inhale it in powder form, cinnamon can cause difficulty breathing, coughing, and choking.

Almonds: Almonds may not necessarily be toxic to dogs like pecans, walnuts and macadamia nuts are, but they can block the esophagus or even tear the windpipe if not chewed completely. Salted almonds are especially dangerous because they can increase water retention, which is potentially fatal to dogs prone to heart disease.

Raw bread dough or anything containing yeast should never be fed to your dog:

The warm, moist conditions of the stomach create a breeding ground for live yeast cultures that cause the raw dough to expand in the abdomen. In worst-case scenarios, this can lead to the death of tissue. Furthermore, as the yeast multiplies, it can create alcohols that cause the dog to become inebriated.

Xylitol, Found in Candy, gum, toothpaste, baked goods, and some diet foods is a common artificial sweetener:

While it has no discernible effect on humans, in dogs xylitol leads to a rapid and severe drop in blood sugar levels, sometimes resulting in seizures and liver failure in as little as 30 minutes after ingestion.


What should you do if your little Shih Tzu eats something they should not have? 

No matter how careful you are, your dog might find and swallow something s/he shouldn't.

Keep the number of your local vet, the closest emergency clinic, and the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center  1-888-426-4435 where you know you can find it. And, if you think your dog has eaten something toxic, call for emergency help right away.


What Can Your Shih Tzu Eat?

Salmon: fully cooked salmon is an excellent source of protein, good fats, and amino acids. It promotes joint and brain health and gives their immune systems a nice boost. However, raw or undercooked salmon contains parasites that can make dogs very sick, causing vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, and, in extreme cases, even death. Be sure to cook salmon all the way through (the FDA recommends at least 145 degrees Fahrenheit) and the parasites should cook out.

Lean Meats: Be sure the foods are cooked, pure, and not fatty or heavily seasoned.

Shrimp: A few shrimp every now and then is fine for your dog, but only if they are fully cooked and the shell (including the tail, head, and legs) is removed completely. Shrimp are high in antioxidants, vitamin B-12, and phosphorus, but also low in fat, calories, and carbohydrates.

Turkey: Turkey is fine for dogs as long as it is not covered in garlic (which can be very toxic to dogs) and seasonings. Also be sure to remove excess fat and skin from the meat and don’t forget to check for bones; poultry bones can splinter during digestion, causing blockage or even tears in the intestines.

Cheese: Small to moderate quantities. As long as your dog isn’t lactose intolerant, which is rare but still possible in canines, cheese can be a great treat. Many kinds of cheese can be high in fat, so go for low-fat varieties like cottage cheese or mozzarella

Eggs: Eggs are safe for dogs as long as long as they are fully cooked. Cooked eggs are a wonderful source of protein and can help an upset stomach. However, eating raw egg whites can give dogs biotin deficiency, so be sure to cook the eggs all the way through before giving them to your pet.

Peanuts: They’re packed with good fats and proteins that will benefit your dog. Just be sure to give peanuts in moderation, as you don’t want your dog taking in too much fat, which can lead to pancreas issues in canines. Also, avoid salted peanuts

Peanut Butter: Just like whole peanuts, peanut butter is an excellent source of protein for dogs. It contains heart-healthy fats, vitamins B and E and niacin. Raw, unsalted peanut butter is the healthiest option because it doesn’t contain xylitol, a sugar substitute that can be toxic to dogs.

Pork and Ham: Pork is highly digestible protein, packed with amino acids, and it contains more calories per pound than other meats. Pork also may be less likely to cause an allergic reaction in some pets compared to meat.

Corn: Corn is one of the most common ingredients in most dog foods. However, the cob can be hard for them to digest and may cause an intestinal blockage, so avoid giving them corn on the cob.

Cashews: Cashews are OK for dogs, but only a few at a time. They’ve got calcium, magnesium, antioxidants, and proteins, but while these nuts contain less fat than walnuts, almonds, or pecans, too many can lead to weight gain and other fat-related conditions. A few cashews here and there is a nice treat, but only if they’re unsalted

Coconut: This funky fruit contains Lauric, which strengthens the immune system by fighting off viruses. It can also help with bad breath and clearing up skin conditions like hot spots, flea allergies, and itchy skin. Coconut milk and coconut oil are safe for dogs too. Just be sure your dog doesn’t get its paws on the furry outside of the shell, which can get lodged in the throat.

Honey: Honey is packed with countless nutrients such as vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K, potassium, calcium, magnesium, copper, and antioxidants. Feeding dogs a tablespoon of local honey twice a day can help with allergies because it introduces small amounts of pollen to their systems, building up immunity to allergens in your area. In addition to consuming honey, the sticky spread can also be used as a topical treatment for burns and superficial cuts.

Tuna: In moderation, cooked fresh tuna is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, which promotes heart and eye health. As for canned tuna, it contains small amounts of mercury and sodium, which should be avoided in excess. A little bit of canned tuna and tuna juice here and there is fine – prepared only in water, not oil – as long as it doesn’t contain any spices.

Apples, oranges, bananas, watermelon, strawberries, blueberries, pineapple, 

pears, raspberries and mango's: These are tasty treats for your dog. Take out any seeds first. Seeds, stems, and leaves can cause serious problems and of course all this in moderation.

Yogurt: Plain yogurt is a perfectly acceptable snack for dogs. It is rich in protein and calcium. The active bacteria in yogurt can help strengthen the digestive system with probiotics. Be sure to skip over yogurts with added sugars and artificial sweeteners.

Carrot sticks, green beans, peas, cucumber slices, or zucchini slices, plain baked potato, broccoli, celery and sweet potatoes: All of these veggies my dogs love, but, don't let your dog eat any raw potatoes or any potato plants from your pantry or garden, and of course all this in moderation.

Bread: Small amounts of plain bread (no spices and definitely no raisins) won’t hurt your dog, but it also won’t provide any health benefits either. It has no nutritional value and can really pack on the carbohydrates and calories, just like in people. Homemade breads are a better option than store-bought, as bread from the grocery store typically contains unnecessary preservatives, but it’s best to avoid it all together.

Popcorn: Unsalted, unbuttered, plain air-popped popcorn is OK for your dog in moderation. It contains riboflavin and thiamine, both of which promote eye health and digestion, as well as small amounts of iron and protein. Be sure to pop the kernels all the way before giving them to your dog, as unpopped kernels could become a choking hazard.

Fish: Fish contains good fats and amino acids, giving your dog a nice health boost. Salmon and sardines are especially beneficial – salmon because it’s loaded with vitamins and protein, and sardines because they have soft, digestible bones for extra calcium. With the exception of sardines, be sure to pick out all the tiny bones, which can be tedious but is necessary.

Cooked White Rice and Pasta: Dogs can eat plain white rice or pasta after it’s cooked. And, a serving of plain white rice with some boiled chicken can sometimes make your dog feel better when s/he is having stomach problems.


Call or text me if you have any additional questions!

801-634-7233  Thanks! Hugs! Stefanie