Can Dogs Eat Onions?Why You Should Not Feed Them At All Cost!

Can dogs eat onions? As a health and fitness enthusiast, I try to incorporate this wonder spice in all the dishes I make. Here’s a little secret, even my pooch loves the intense, lingering scent of onions in my human foods. However, I try hard to not give in to the deadliest temptation of offering him onion-containing foods and treats. 

Everybody should know that onions, whether cooked or raw, should never be given to dogs. They are extremely detrimental to our pooch’s general health and well-being. Giving onions to our pet dog is like wishing him ill and sending him to an early grave.

Keep reading for some “oniony” information.

Can Dogs Eat Onions Yes Or No?

Can Dogs Eat Onions

All dog owners should know and understand that most human foods are unsafe and harmful to canines. Some of these dangerous foods include chocolates, grapes, cherries, garlic, and onions. When ingested in large quantities, these foods can result in irreversible health conditions and premature death. As a responsible pet owner and animal advocate, I try to share all the information I know about the harmful effects of onions to our beloved pet dogs. 

Contrary to popular belief, it is not the pungent scent of onion that makes it dangerous to animals. According to Dr. Jeff Werber, an Emmy-award-winning veterinary medical journalist, an onion contains N-propyl disulfide, a toxic compound that can potentially do oxidant damage to the erythrocytes (red blood cells) of the canine. 

When ingested in large amounts, this can lead to severe anemia, causing serious complications to dogs. When the owner fails to seek immediate medical attention from the animal experts, this can further lead to premature death. 

It is essential to note that all parts of this pungent culinary favorite are toxic to canines, including the roots, flesh, leaves, juice, and dried powders. Also, bear in mind that onions, whether cooked or raw, are fatal to dogs and cats.

While you still have time to change your old ways, start eliminating onion ingredients from your dog’s diet and be always critical of all the foods you give your furry friend. 

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How Much Onion Can Hurt A Dog?

Onion toxicity in dogs depends on the animal’s weight, age, breed, health status, and amount of toxic substance ingested. It only takes a small amount of onion to cause adverse reactions in dogs.

Onion toxicity can immediately take place when the dog ingests 0.5% of its total body weight in onions at a time. This only means that a ¼-cup onion, whether cooked or raw, can put the life of a 20-pound dog in a life-threatening situation. 

I strongly advise you to always check the ingredients of the foods you give your pooch. If possible, never share your human food with your pet dog to minimize the risk of onion poisoning.

I make it a habit to seek help from my trusted veterinarian-nutritionist friend regarding the diet of my pet dog. This is the safest and the most practical way of ensuring his safety, especially about the foods he eats.

It is also best to keep those onions away from our clever, opportunistic, yet innocent pet dogs to minimize the risk of onion poisoning. 

What are the types of onions you need to keep away from your canine?

Here are the types of onions that you need to keep away from your dog:

  • Red Onions
  • Green Onions or Scallions
  • Bermuda Onions
  • Leeks
  • Chives
  • Onion Powder
  • Shallots
  • All other types of onions

What Can I Give My Dog If He Ate Onions?

What if my beloved pooch accidentally ingests a piece of onion?

This mind-boggling question deserves a concrete and practical answer. According to Dr. Werber, dogs are least likely to eat onions since they instinctively hate their intense, pungent scent.

However, the sad reality is, dog parents are the real culprit in most cases of onion toxicity in canines. Dogs ingest onions through the onion-containing foods and treat we intentionally or unintentionally give them. 

When you suspect that your dog has ingested onions and is exhibiting symptoms of onion toxicity, seek immediate medical help from the vet or animal expert.

Bear in mind that the toxic chemical present in onions can lead to the destruction of healthy red blood cells that oxygenate the dog’s body.

This can further lead to hemolytic anemia, an extremely fatal condition that can cause a breakdown of your dog’s immune system. This irreversible condition can eventually result in the premature death of your precious furry friend. 

When you bring your dog to the vet, he will immediately conduct accurate history taking and taking of vital signs to assess the condition. I highly recommend that your dog will undergo a series of blood work to better diagnose the condition.

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These tests can also help determine the severity of onion toxicity in your canine. The vet may prescribe medications to treat the symptoms of such a condition. 

How do I know if my dog has onion poisoning?

When my dog first accidentally ingested an egg sandwich with onions sprinkles, I was so worried. What I did is, I immediately called my veterinarian friend and he instructed me to watch out for the following symptoms of onion toxicity:

Symptoms of onion toxicity in dogs

  • Decreased or complete loss of appetite
  • Weakness and reduced energy levels
  • Pale gums
  • Panting
  • Vomiting and drooling
  • Collapse 
  • Blood in urine
  • Irregular cardiac rhythm and increased heart rate

How do I Induce Vomiting If My Dog Ate Onion?

Bear in mind that this intervention requires enough expertise and formal training. 

Make sure you have a 3-percent hydrogen peroxide solution. Higher concentrations will be toxic and may cause serious damage to your pup. Administer the proper amount: the suggested dosage is 1 teaspoon per 5 pounds of the dog’s body weight by mouth, with a maximum dose of 3 tablespoons for dogs who weigh more than 45 pounds.[Source]

What are the treatments for onion toxicity in canines?

If your canine is exhibiting symptoms of onion toxicity, the vet may induce vomiting. 

They may also use activated charcoal to treat the poisoning as well as potential allergic reactions. Activated charcoal reduces absorption of the onions in the gastrointestinal tract.[Source]

The main focus of care in onion toxicity in canines is to produce healthier red blood cells and reverse oxidant damage caused by N-propyl disulfide.

In severe cases, the vet may order blood transfusion and Oxygen supplementation to treat the condition. These will help stabilize the canine until his body can produce newer and much healthier red blood cells. 

If you suspect your pooch is at risk for onion poisoning, immediately call your vet and seek immediate medical intervention.

But while all these medical procedures and treatments may help save our pooch’s precious life, it is still best to exercise preventive measures at home. After all, prevention, indeed, is way better than cure.

Wrap Up

Allium Cepa, more commonly called onion, is a popular bulb vegetable and spice that can make every dish more flavorful and extra-special.

This pungent culinary favorite is packed with essential vitamins, minerals, fiber, and powerful antioxidants. It is a known fact that we, humans, consume much onion daily. 

We add this powerful ingredient to various recipes – soups, sauces, dishes, and treats. We even share these foods with our beloved pets, especially cats and dogs.

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But while we indulge our furry friends with these onion-containing foods, we fail to recognize that we are putting their precious lives in danger. 

Can dogs eat onions – definitely No!

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