Can Dogs Eat Onions?


Question: Can Dogs Eat Onions?

Verdict: No, they are toxic for dogs.

Verdict Explanation: While onions are a common ingredient in human cuisine, they pose a serious threat to our pups. According to multiple research studies, onions are toxic to dogs and should never be fed to them, whether raw, cooked, powdered, or in any other form.

The Dangers of Onions for Dogs

Onions, as well as other plants in the Allium genus like garlic, leeks, and chives, contain a compound called N-propyl disulfide that can damage a dog’s red blood cells. This can lead to a condition called hemolytic anemia, where the dog’s red blood cells break down faster than they can be replaced.

Symptoms of onion toxicity in dogs can include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, pale gums, rapid breathing, and even organ damage or failure in severe cases. The toxic effects can take several days to manifest, so prompt veterinary care is crucial if a dog is known to have ingested onions.

Cooked vs. Raw Onions

Whether raw or cooked, all forms of onions are considered unsafe for dogs. In fact, dried onion powder and onion-containing seasonings can be even more concentrated in the toxic compounds. So dogs should never be fed onions, whether they are part of a homemade meal or a commercial pet food.

Other Lesser-Known Onion Facts

  • Onion toxicity can affect all breeds of dogs, though some may be more susceptible due to genetic factors or existing health conditions.
  • Even small amounts of onion can be dangerous, with as little as 0.5% of a dog’s body weight in onions potentially causing issues.
  • Onion powder, often found in pre-packaged foods and seasonings, is more potent than fresh onions and thus even more dangerous to dogs.
  • Onions are not the only Allium plants that are toxic to dogs – garlic, leeks, chives, and shallots also pose similar risks.