24 Common Household Items That Are Harmful To Pets

Insurance Navy Auto Insurance24 Common Household Items Harmful To Pets

People own pets for many different reasons, all of which boil down to the desire for the type of companionship a loyal pet provides. Sometimes, a new puppy or cat is so adorable you just want to let it roam around your house and feel comfortable. However, there are many everyday household items harmful to pets if ingested. So, to help you keep your pets safe, we’ve put together this guide to nearly 30 poisonous household items to keep away from your pets.


With pets like dogs, alcohol can be incredibly toxic. It often causes acidosis in dogs, an illness that can lead to cardiac arrest. You can read more about acidosis here.


Antifreeze should not be consumed under any circumstances, whether you’re a human or a dog. Even ingesting small amounts of antifreeze can lead to lethal results.

Artificial Sweetener

This can be incredibly toxic due to the ingredient xylitol. Go to the bottom of this list to read more about the dangers of xylitol and how it can hurt your pets.


The reason that this popular fruit is so dangerous for your dog is because of the giant seed in the middle. That seed can be a major joking hazard for dogs, though the natural ingredients within the avocado shouldn’t harm them. That being said, avocados contain Persin and that can be deadly if ingested by animals such as birds, cattle and horses.


If your pet chomps into a battery, it’s going to cause some major issues. That battery acid at the center of the battery can lead to some very nasty mouth and stomach injuries if ingested.

Chicken Bones

Any sort of cooked bones can easily break in your pet’s mouth, leading to some nasty injuries. Sticking to chew toys may be a better idea than tossing your dog leftover chicken bones from KFC.


It’s pretty commonly known that chocolate is toxic when ingested by dogs but you should apply this rule to any pet you own. Although none of the types of chocolate are good for your pets, some are less toxic than others. The typical rule of thumb is that the darker the chocolate, the more dangerous it is to your pets. That’s because darker chocolate contains a higher amount of a substance known as methylxanthine. This ingredient can cause a cavalcade of problems in your pet, including but not limited to diarrhea, vomiting, seizures and excessive thirst.


Humans love coffee, for the most part. Obviously not everyone is a fan but it’s a very popular drink used to help people properly prepare for the day. What is so toxic to your pets within the coffee is the one thing that most people tend to drink it for–caffeine. That caffeine is very poisonous to some pets, so keep your cup o’ joe as far away from your pet’s reach as possible.


Coins can be a choking hazard for your pets. However, there’s more to it than that. Coins such as pennies can sometimes contain zinc, a very toxic metal for dogs to ingest. Zinc can have poisonous effects on your dog’s blood, which can lead to organ failure and sometimes even results in death.

Dangerous Plants

There are a plethora of plants commonly found in homes that can become toxic when ingested by pets. This list includes but is not limited to aloe vera, azaleas, english ivy, jade, lilies, mistletoe, philodendron, poinsettias, potato leaves and stems, pothos, rhubarb leaves, sago palm.

Fabric Softener Sheets

Chemicals contained in fabric softener sheets can be poisonous for your dogs. The pleasant scent may implore your pooch to give one of the sheets a sniff or maybe even a lick. That’s why it’s important to keep fabric softener sheets out of reach of pets, especially curious cats and dogs.


There are different methods of fertilizing grass, all of which can be toxic to your pets. If you’ve used those iconic little granules you see scattered across lawns, wait at least 24 hours before allowing your dog out onto the lawn. Even if you keep an eye on your dog and he doesn’t eat any of it, that fertilizer can still be dangerous if it gets caught in the pet’s paws or fur.

If you’ve used a liquid fertilizer, wait until the lawn looks completely dry before allowing your dog onto it.

Foam Insulation

Foam insulation might sometimes look like cotton candy but it is definitely not as enjoyable to ingest. Consuming insulation is dangerous for both humans and animals. Keep it out of range of animals at all times.


For humans, garlic and onions can be both a healthy and tasty ingredient to any meal. However, it is highly toxic for pets such as cats and dogs. Both of these substances can cause bursting of blood cells within your dog. Even worse? It can sometimes take several days for symptoms to begin appearing.


The reason for these two being lumped together is because they are basically the same thing. Both grapes and raisins are a delightfully delicious snack to have on their own, or with a meal. Well, for humans, at least.

For dogs, it’s a very different situation. Ingesting either of these snacks can lead to kidney failure in dogs. They may seem like harmless snacks to feed to your pooch but as you can see, that is not the case.

Laundry Detergent Pods

Remember the Tide pod challenge? The takeaway from that popular meme is that humans should not ingest laundry detergent pods, as if that really needed to be established. Suffice it to say, they are dangerous for pets to ingest as well.

The attractive colors featured on many detergent pods may implore your pet to investigate further, in hopes that it’s either food or a new toy. That’s why it’s important to keep these out of reach of pets at all times. If ingested, the cleaning solutions within the pods can cause major harm to your pet’s stomach and lungs.

Liquid Air Fresheners

Liquid air fresheners are very commonly used as a method of making one’s home smell more presentable. However, the chemicals that create that attractive aroma can be harmful to cats and dogs. Specifically, it can have harmful side effects on your pet’s skin, mouth and digestive system.

Macadamia Nuts

Macadamia nuts may not be deadly when ingested by dogs but they can still be very poisonous when consumed. If your dog eats this popular snack, it can result in some scary symptoms such as vomiting, muscle tremors, hyperthermia, and even depression.


Any form of medication made for humans can be harmful to your pets. Even commonly consumed, widely available medicine such as Tylenol can be poisonous to pets. If your medicine is in a bulky plastic bottle, it should still be kept far out of reach of your pets to avoid them chewing their way in.

Simple ingredients such as Acetaminophen can have irreparable effects on your pet. Likewise, pet medications should be kept far away from pets, even if the medication is prescribed to that pet. While that medication may be safe for your pet to ingest, you don’t want them to get into the bottle while you’re not looking and ingest more than it is supposed to.

Raw Meat

Don’t be fooled by what you see in movies or TV shows. You shouldn’t allow your dog, or any pet for that matter, to snack on raw steak or any other form of raw meat. Doing so can lead to your dog developing illnesses such as salmonella.


If you’re a dog owner, you may assume that human shampoo can be used on dogs as well. However, this is untrue. That’s because human skin and dog skin has different pH levels, meaning shampoo has to be specifically designed for human skin.

This means that you need to use specific dog shampoo for your pooch to avoid the introduction of harmful parasites and bacteria.


Tobacco is known to be poisonous to humans and likewise, it is very harmful if ingested by your pet. This doesn’t just mean you should keep your tobacco or cigarette packs kept away somewhere safe. It also means you have to be mindful of how you dispose of things such as cigarette butts to avoid a curious cat or dog sniffing around, finding it and eating it.


Action figures, dolls, LEGOs, and other toys can contain small pieces considered choking hazards for pets such as birds, dogs, cats, etc. So, keep these away from your pets so they don’t chew on them, choke on them, or do anything else that could result in harmful effects on your beloved pet.


This is a commonly used artificial sweetener. It can be found in sugar-free products such as sugar-free chewing gum. If consumed by your pet, xylitol can result in life-threatening liver failure.

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