Worst Dog Food: 34 Foods That Will Kill Your Dog Quickly

Most of the pet companies like other businesses use cheap ingredients for making the dog food, whether dry, canned or wet.

It commonly contains the 4-D elements, which is meat and other by-products derived from animals that were either dead, hit on the road, diseased animals that were rejected by inspectors and slaughterhouse rejects.

All these under the 4-Ds rule are acceptable pet ingredient.

If food is unfit for the human, then it is neither fit for our dogs. This article will take you through the composition/ingredients found in the food of our home friends and why they are dangerous.

Ok, now let see the full list of worst fog food that you should avoid.

Worst Dog Food – Avoid At All Costs!

Long story short, I created Healthy Pet Systems video. In it you can see the list of worst dog food and more:
Grapes and Raisins1. Grapes and Raisins

It contains toxic compounds that are harmful to dogs that may lead to rapid kidney failure and death.

Small amounts of grapes and raisins may make the dog unwell, so it’s essential to avoid giving.

Salt2. Salt

Limit the salt the pet’s meal because excessive salt intake may lead to salt poisoning or water deprivation in dogs, which can cause vomiting, diarrhea, vomiting, and seizures; high amounts can be fatal.

Make sure you provide water to drink, to prevent water deprivation.

Chocolate3. Chocolate

Should never eat them; it contains theobromine and caffeine, two stimulants that dogs cannot efficiently metabolize.

Note that the dark and less sweet varieties such as cocoa powder and unsweetened bakers are more poisonous than sweetened varieties. He may exhibit symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration that may lead to more severe complications, such as internal bleeding, muscle tremors, seizures and cause death.

Macadamia nuts4. Macadamia nuts

Should never eat; it contains high-fat content that may elevate the dog’s triglyceride levels and potentially lead to pancreatitis. Additionally, includes an unknown toxin which may cause vomiting, muscle weakness, tremors, hyperthermia and depression when dogs consume such a small amount.

Onions5. Onions

Never feed them; contains N-propyl disulfide, a compound that can damage your dog’s red blood cells, reducing their ability to carry oxygen through the body. It results in anemia. All components of onions like leaves, juice or powder should be avoided.

Anemia symptoms include lethargy, weakness, decreased appetite, and fainting.

Cheese6. Cheese

If you notice that they want to taste give small quantities because the fat and lactose content of cheese, may cause digestive problems, such as…

  • stomach pain
  • and diarrhea,

…after eating.

Avocado7. Avocado

Contain a toxin called persin, its found in all parts of the avocado, including the fruit, pit, leaves, and bark, always keep avocados away from your dog. It is known for being very poisonous to dogs.

It may lead to fluid accumulation in their lungs and chest, which result in breathing difficulties, oxygen deprivation and death.

Coffee and tea8. Coffee and tea

Caffeine contents stimulate the dog’s nervous system, which causes some symptoms, such as hyperactivity, vomiting, diarrhea, elevated heart rate, seizures, and tremors.

Additionally, it leads to Lung failure and abnormal heart rhythm that causes death.

Garlic9. Garlic

Should never be fed, it has toxic chemicals called thiosulfates, which may damage your dog’s red blood cells and cause anemia.

Small amounts of garlic consumption may lead to symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea.

10. Xylitol

It is the sugar substitute in candy, chewing gum, baked goods, and toothpaste. When dogs consume xylitol, it may lead to a rapid drop in blood sugar levels.

The typical symptoms are muscle weakness, seizures, and potential liver damage.

Alcohol11. Alcohol

Products containing alcohol, such as alcoholic beverages, perfumes, mouthwash, and cleaning products, should always be kept away.

It leads to ethanol poisoning that causes tiredness, lack of coordination, seizures, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Raw yeast dough12. Raw yeast dough

When they eat fresh yeast dough, the dogs may experience severe bloating, due to dough expansion in their stomachs which causes breathing difficulties and weakness.

Also, yeast cells in the mixture will produce alcohol in the fermentation process, which may lead to alcohol poisoning and death.

Lemons and limes13. Lemons and lime

It contains a substance called psoralen, causes gastrointestinal symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea, muscle tremors, difficulty walking, liver failure, and death.

It is very toxic for pets so avoid lemons.

Tomatoes14. Tomatoes

The tomatoes contain an alkaloid which is not healthy for pets. In a higher dosage, it can make your pet really sick.

The symptoms are weakness, diarrhea, and harder breathing.

Peaches and plums15. Peaches and plums

Peaches and plums have seeds which contain cyanide and it is very toxic for dogs. The dogs can’t separate the edible part of the inedible.

So don’t give this fruit to your pet and if you have a tree it would be wise to get rid of it.

Chives16. Chives

Chives is one of the worst dog food. It contains disulfides and sulfoxides which are highly toxic for the dog.

Chives dog poisoning leads to anemia and damage to red blood cells.

Mushroom17. Mushrooms

There is a very large list of highly toxic mushrooms that are not good for humans and pets as well. There are various symptoms of mushroom poisoning and some of them can be a very silent killer.

Avoid feeding your pet with mushrooms.

Liver18. Liver

The liver can sometimes be one of the favorite dog treats. Also, beginners don’t know that it is on the list of the worst dog food because it contains a lot of vitamin A.

The higher dosage of the liver can cause bones deformation, anorexia, and weight loss.

Raw fish - Salmon19. Raw fish – salmon

Be advice that Salmon can be infected with nanophyetus parasite which is fatal for a dog.

Salmon poisoning symptoms are fever, diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration, reduced appetite and etc.

Corn20. Corn

Corn is very frequently used in a lot of dogs products as one of the greatest sources of nutrients. The corn is, in fact, healthy for the pet but in some cases, it can be a problem. First, corn can cause digestive problems. Second, some pets show signs of allergy on corn.

Third, if your pet eats bigger pieces of corn there is a risk that he will choke on it.

Chewing gums21. Chewing gums

Chewing gums are simply forbidden to the pets. Do not let your pets swallow them because it can cause bowel obstruction and also a liver failure. The chewing gums contain xylitol which is very toxic for pets.

Chewing gums are one of the worst dog food that can cause serious problems.

Raw eggs22. Raw eggs

Raw eggs can contain salmonella and/or E.coli bacterias which are bad for dog health. If you feed your pet with eggs make sure that you cooked them first to avoid poisoning.

On the other hand cooked eggs, the food contains a high amount of protein which can benefit your pet.

Apple seeds23. Apple seeds

Many seeds, as well as apple seeds, contain cyanide which is toxic for dogs.

Make sure that your pet does not eat seeds because it can weaken his digestive system and lead to other health problems.

Cooked bones24. Cooked bones

Raw bones do not cause health problems in dogs so feel free to give them to your dogs. However, the cooked bones are dry and brittle. Dry and brittle bones can damage the dog teeth and make problems in pet throats, digestive tract, and intestine.

Avoid these problems and provide to your dog raw bones.

Food dyes25. Artificial food dyes

Many food products contain artificial food dyes. The food dyes red 40, yellow 5 and yellow 6 are a carcinogen for dogs as well as humans.

The reason is that they contain benzidine an organic compound that studies proclaimed carcinogen.

Soy26. Soy

It is a very cheap ingredient and it is mostly used in a dog food product for the high amount of proteins. On the other hand, this ingredient is very unhealthy food for dogs. The soy is usually genetically modified, contains the high level of pesticides and it causes allergies and intestinal problems.

So try to avoid food products which contain soy.

27. Food preservative Ethoxyquin

Ethoxyquin is a controversial preservative for food. There are many people that say has no consequences for dog health but on the other hand, many pet owners reported that dogs have allergic reactions, skin problems, and organ failure problems.

So I place it here on the list as one of the worst dog food that you should avoid to keep your pet healthy.

28. Carrageenan

The Carrageenan is used as an ingredient in many food products as a thickener. However, studies linked this ingredient with dog problems like decreased immunity, gastrointestinal inflammation and the higher risk of ulceration, and malignant tumors.

29. Propylene glycol

Propylene Glycol is a toxic glycol that is used as a food additive. It reduces red blood cell survival time.

Vegetable oil30. Vegetable oil

Vegetable oil is not safe for dogs foods. If there is too much vegetable oil then loose stools and diarrhea can occur.

So vegetable oil definitely deserves a place in the worst dog food list.

Pea protein31. Pea protein

Pea protein has a high amount of protein and it is used in as ingredients in foods. However, pea protein is a vegetable protein and his biological value is not as high as animal proteins. Your pet body requires animal protein.

This protein is not toxic for your pet but it is used in the low-quality food product and you should avoid them.

White flour32. White flour

White flour is not good in dogs food. It can cause allergies, digestive problems and bloat.

For your pet health benefit, it would be better if you avoid it.

33. BHA/BHT preservatives

BHA/BHT is used to preserve fat in pet food. Some studies show that this preservative cause cancer and it is banned in some countries.

34. Sodium Tripolyphosphate (STPP)

Sodium Tripolyphosphate or STPP is a food preservative that food appear fresher for a longer time. The study shows that it can cause a dog skin problem so avoid this preservation in dogs foods.

This was the list of 33 worst dog food.

It contains foods as well as ingredients that are bad for your pet health and you should avoid it. In the following part, I want to show you much more about unhealthy dog foods so if you want to keep your pet healthy I suggest you see it.

Before that, you may ask yourself…

What should I give to my dogs or puppies to eat?

How are dogs designed to eat? Dogs and wolves have the same classification, under one species; therefore it is designed to eat and digest prey. Its stomach environment is acidic (pH1) – able to:

  • dissolve raw meat & bones,
  • and to deal with food-borne bacteria.

Carnivores’ mouths have no digestive enzymes. Thus digestion begins in the stomach. Fats and not grains is the natural energy provider to the four-legged friends; grains are not usually readily assimilated.

Digestion of the raw food takes place quickly at least 4-5 hours, for the cooked grain-based food it will take up to 15 hours.

Their teeth and jaws design is for piercing and ripping the skin or flesh of prey as well as crush and shear the bones. From the above raw diet is the best.

In just a few seconds you will see the most common composition of commercial dog foods that are unhealthy for your dogs.

The Composition Of Commercial Dog Foods That Are Slowly Killing Your Pet

Worst dog Food
Commercial pet foods aren’t always the best. Their composition shows that this food is unhealthy for your doga and can cause serious pet health problems. Therefore you need to choose wisely.

Here is the commercial worst dog food list:

  1. Meat by-product – It consists of organs and parts either not desired or abolished for human consumption. It may include bones, blood, intestines, lungs, ligaments, heads, feet, and feathers. The parts of animals used can be obtained from any source. Thus there is no control over quality or contamination. Any meat can be included: goats, pigs, horses, rats, road kill or any sick, dead animal, which may consist of pus, cancerous tissue, and damaged tissue.
  2. Corn – It is the leading cause of allergies and sugar imbalance in pets as well as causing severe health issues; they are filler ingredients, useless and not easily digestible. Corn is full of GMOs.
  3. Yeast – it’s used for flavoring and a protein source; it is toxic to the liver.
  4. Beet pulp – It leads to weight gain, hyperactivity and feeds arthritis because it is a sugar filler.
  5. a-Tocopherol Acetate – Study shows it is the cause of tumor formation when used in high quantities.
  6. Wheat flour – It is the number one cause of dog allergies; it has no nutritional value. It is the fine particles of wheat bran, germ, and offal that make-up for the floor sweepings of leftovers in the mill after processing everything from the wheat. The application of the herbicide Roundup or other herbicides before harvest contains the deadly active ingredient glyphosate to wheat and barley which acts like desiccant.
  7. Rice – If not organic may cause arsenic poisoning.
  8. Pea protein – High levels of legumes cause most of the gut disorders in pets.
  9. Soybeans related products – It is full of s full of GMOs and all soybean products should be avoided. Soy is estrogenic thus it is capable of destroying the dog’s endocrine system. Also, it is the cause of Tumors and illness due to GMO ingredients Like Soy Protein Concentrate, Soy Protein Isolate.
  10. Animal fat – Unspecified fat means no one knows where the fat came from and can cause pancreatitis. The FDA website published that it appeared there are associations between hydrolyzed ingredients and the presence of pentobarbital in dog food. The ingredients Meat and Bone Meal (MBM), Beef and Bone Meal (BBM), Animal Fat (AF), and Animal Digest (AD) are from animal sources that could include euthanized animals.

This was the list of the commercial worst dog foods composition. This food is unhealthy for your dogs so try to avoid it.

In just a few seconds you will see foods that have been reported to cause dog death.

Top 7 Worst Dog Food That Kill Your Dog

Worst Dog Food That Kill Your DogThe above are a few of the worst dog food ingredients most common from style found in the dog’s commercial foods and which are toxic.

Below is the worst dog food list bought stores that, have been reported to cause death in dogs.

Worst dog food that can kill your pet:

  • Hill’s Science Diet Adult Dog Food
  • Blue Buffalo
  • Pedigree Adultult Complete Nutrition Beef Flavor Dry Dog Food
  • Ol Roy from Walmart
  • Purina Dog Chow
  • Alpo by Purina
  • Beneful By Purina

As you probably know the little puppy dogs are the most vulnerable to low-quality foods. So I want to show you the foods that you need to avoid if you have puppies.

Ok, let’s see the worst puppy food list.

Worst Puppy Food

Worst puppy foodThe reports show that there are puppy foods that cause serious problems and even death. There is a list of three worst puppy food makes that you should avoid.

Which is the worst puppy food?

  1. Nature’s Recipe Puppy Food
  2. Hills Science Diet
  3. AvoDerm

There are also specific ingredients that are not recommended for puppies to eat. So try to avoid any type of food that contains some of the ingredients that are bellow.

The worst puppy food ingredients:

  • Corn
  • Chicken
  • Corn gluten
  • Pork fat
  • Beep Plup

So try to avoid this ingredient and also the best advice is to find food with natural fats and oils as well as vitamins and minerals. Warning! Stay away from the foods that were produced with chemicals.

Ok, now let’s see the worst dog treats.

Top Worst Dog Treats

Worst Dog TreatsDogs treat play important role in pet life. Make sure that treats are well balanced and healthy for your pet.

These are the top worst dog treats:


Top 6 Worst Wet Dog Foods

One of the most common dogs’ food is wet product. This product contains a lot of meat protein. However, there were reports of unhealthy wet dogs foods.

Here is the list of worst wet dog foods:

  1. Cesar® Savory Delight Porterhouse Steak Flavor with Peas and Carrots Dog Food Tray
  2. Pedigree® Chopped Ground Dinner With Chicken Canned Dog Food
  3. Kibbles ‘n Bits® Dog Food Tender Cuts with Real Turkey, Bacon & Vegetables in Gravy
  4. Ol’ Roy® Strips In Gravy Filet Mignon Flavor Dog Food
  5. Grreat Choice® Classic Ground with Beef, Bacon and Cheese Wet Dog Food
  6. ALPO® Prime Cuts Stew with Beef & Vegetables in Gravy Canned Dog Food

Top 8 Worst Canned Dog Food

The below list of foods contain the majority of its ingredients dangerous to the health of dogs, includes;

  1. Hill’s Science Diet Senior Savory Chicken Entrée Canned Dog Food
  2. Hill’s® Science Diet® Adult Light with Liver
  3. Cesar® Canine Cuisine Meaty Selects Dog Food Filet Mignon
  4. Hill’s Prescription Diet® Canine Metabolic Advanced Weight Solution
  5. Purina® Pro Plan® Adult Canned Dog Food Chicken & Rice Entrée
  6. Iams Veterinary Formula Intestinal Plus Low-Residue Canned Dog Food
  7. Royal Canin Starter Mousse Mother & Babydog Canned Dog Food
  8. Chef Michaels Carvery Creations Braised Brisket Flavor in a savory sauce

In just a few seconds you will see the list of dogs foods with less or no complains.

Those With Less Or No Complains – Dogs Foods That Are Safe

Dogs Foods That Are Safe

  1. Healthy Morsels Soft & Crunchy Bites Dog Food Dry
  2. Purina Be Happy Beef Flavor dog food
  3. Iams Pro Active Healthy Smart Puppy Original Dry Dog Food
  4. Muenster Natural Adult Dog Food
  5. Abound Natural Dog Food.
  6. Luvsome Natural Dog Food Ingredients-Kroger Brand
  7. Tuffy’s Pet Food Gold Adult Dry Dog Food
  8. Purina Bella Natural Bites with Real Chicken & Beef & Accents of Sweet Potatoes & Spinach Small Breed

Dry Food For Dogs

  1. Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Grain-Free
  2. Life Abundance
  3. Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Potato & Duck
  4. Nutro Large Breed Adult Chicken, Whole Brown Rice & Oatmeal Recipe
  5. Fromm Gold Holistic Large Breed

Good Home Made Foods for Pets

Home Made Foods for dogsTherefore with the above limitation, there are other home foods that you can feed they include:

  • Carrots
  • Cooked eggs
  • Peanut Butter
  • Salmon
  • Popcorn
  • Blue barriers
  • Pineapple
  • Watermelon without seeds
  • Green peas
  • Oatmeal
  • Apples without seeds
  • Cooked Chicken is a healthy and excellent source of protein
  • Sweet potatoes in moderate amounts
  • Cooked pork without spices
  • Honey and milk in a limited amount

Note that dogs should not eat any seed of any plant or fruit it is very hazardous, avoid spices on cooked foods.

Also, make sure that you do not exaggerate with one type of food.

Benefits of Natural Raw Diet to Dogs or Puppies

  1. An extended lifespan of seventeen to nineteen years on average.
  2. Never suffering obesity, diabetes, kidney ailments, allergies, arthritis or the various ailments and hassles that spring from these types of illnesses.
  3. A remarkable recovery for pets who suffer nutrient deficient diseases and have had no hope.
  4. White teeth, healthy pink gums, and reduced foul breath.
  5. Spending less in a day on a pet food budget and a drop in vet bills by 85%.
  6. An end to the greasy doggy smell that permeates carpets, furniture and clothing.
  7. An alert companion with a superbly consistent temperament.
  8. A pet that is finally able to enjoy its mealtimes because it is eating the best dog food diet.
  9. Zero recurrences of vomiting and diarrhea.
  10. A naturally boosted immune system to diseases that are known to devastate pets on commercial dog food diets.

Good vs Bad Dog Food | Facts About The Commercial Dog Foods

Good vs Bad Dog FoodThere are studies that show facts about commercial dog foods. I want to show you those facts and also in the following part, you will be able to see good vs bad dog food comparison ie. pros and pros.

Ok, let’s see the facts about commercial dog foods:

  • The statistic shows that; half of all dogs above age ten may develop cancer.
  • Cancer is the number one cause of death in dogs.
  • In the U.S. twenty percent of dogs suffer from arthritis.
  • Surveys in the U.S., Canada, U.K., and Denmark state the average lifespan of most dog breeds is 10 to 13 years when natural diet dogs are expected to live 17 to 19 years
  • More than 70% of anal sac gland cases stem from canned and packaged dog food brands.
  • Increased fat and sugar levels in commercial food products are the primary cause of obesity and most health disorder observed by veterinarians across the U.S.
  • Twenty-seven percent of dogs suffer from allergies that are the root of itchy skin rashes and ear infections.
  • By age four 85% of dogs will suffer from periodontal disease; this increases to 100% by age 12.

In the following part, you will see the advantages and disadvantages ie. good vs bad dog food comparison.

1. Dry Foods For Dogs – Pros & Cons


  • Some may not eat it
  • The shelf life is not long
  • Quality varies from very good to very poor


  • Good for giving the pet an excellent chewing experience
  • Helps to keep the mouth clean by lowering buildup of plaque
  • Maybe left out and will not spoil quickly like canned food.
  • Foods marked as complete and balanced are researched to provide total nutrition without the need to offer supplements
  • Little or no odor
  • Less expensive
  • Easy to serve
  • No refrigeration needed

2. Homemade Foods For Dogs – Pros & Cons


  • May not be helpful in essential canine nutrition
  • May require to add supplements
  • May not be practical traveling people or onboard pets
  • Can be expensive
  • May also be less expensive
  • Time-consuming


  • Possible to control the food preparation
  • Some claim Health benefits
  • Fun activity if you like to cook
  • Less or no worries about dog food recalls
  • Makes it possible to control the ingredients that go into the diet

3. Canned Foods For Dogs – Pros & Cons


  • May have an unpleasant odor
  • Cannot be left out all day as it will attract insects and bacterias thus spoiling fast.
  • More expensive than semi-moist
  • Must be refrigerated to maintain health standards


  • Some dog pets prefer canned food taste
  • Maybe more suitable for those medical conditions that need higher water intake.
  • May have lesser preservatives used than dry dog foods
  • Keeps much longer, until you open the can

4. Raw Foods For Dogs – Pros & Cons


  • Needs additional supplements to assure complete nutrition
  • May introduce harmful bacteria especially when eaten late
  • Not well researched, therefore may also have limitations
  • Most costly
  • It is time-consuming when preparing


  • The more natural diet for dogs
  • More comfortable to digest for their stomachs
  • Less dental problems
  • Healthier and long life-span of dogs

5. Dehydrated Foods For Dogs – Pros & Cons


  • Expensive
  • May not be provided in most pet stores


  • Less messy than fresh or canned
  • Fewer preservatives
  • Less processing is equal to more nutrition
  • Both cooked and raw diets use the dehydration process

6. Semi-Moist Foods For Dogs – Pros & Cons


  • Nutritional Value is usually low
  • Large quantities of preservatives, artificial colors, and flavorings
  • Leads to dental problems


  • Easy to serve
  • Does not need refrigeration
  • Cost is more economical than canned food
  • Allows for convenient packaging

Healthy Pet Systems List Of Worst Dog Food

Worst Dog Foods

The list of worst dog food from above is from the analysis of its ingredients compared to what a dog food should have, example some of the menus do not contain meat at all, have a lot of flavors and additives, plenty of grains, less meat protein compared to other ingredients.

Also, understand the label; the best way to choose quality food is by picking one that has…

….the phrase ‘Balanced and Complete.’

It serves product regulation because for a product to have this label it has followed the government standards of quality.

For long lasting of food, most manufacturers use additives which may cause liver problems. Look out and go for Absorbic acid, this is a natural alternative of preservation that has vitamin C and will not cause harm.

Check out on the list of the composition of the food to find out if it contains substances that may cause allergic to your pet.

In general, the below ingredients make up for the worst dog foods:

  1. Xylitol and Other Sugar Alcohol
  2. Nitrites
  3. Propylene Glycol
  4. Vegetable Oil
  5. Cellulose
  6. Animal By-Products
  7. Corn
  8. Pea Protein
  9. Corn Syrup
  10. Artificial Colours
  11. White Flour
  12. BHA/BHT preservatives
  13. Flavor
  14. Soy
  15. Sodium Tripolyphosphate (STPP)

In recent times, raw food dieting is emerging as the newest trend. It mainly consists of Meaty bones, fruits, vegetable, muscle meats and no grains. It has shown positive health results they have less intestinal tracts and more stomach acid. Also, the dog’s anatomy is designed to take fresh raw food before any bacteria can multiply.

Hope you enjoyed reading my article list of worst dog food.

Let’s keep our pets healthy!

About Author:

I'm a dog food judge. I specialize in examining dog food nutrition so that I can recommend you food that will preserve your dog's health and extend his life. Good food will help you prevent dog health problems like obesity, diabetes, pancreatitis, gastroenteritis, nutritional imbalance, and many others. Also, by preventing serious illnesses you won't have to pay huge veterinarian bill later.

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