Five Summer Treats to Avoid Feeding Your Pet

Tuesday, July 10, 2012 - 4:00pm

Grab a spoon—it’s National Ice Cream Month! It’s really no surprise that many of us love to spoil our pets with bits of our tasty summer treats, but pet parents please beware: Ice cream is just one of many summer goodies that could double as serious health hazards to our pets!

Ice cream
Just say no to the cone. One lick or two (no chocolate, please!) is fine, but because pets do not possess significant amounts of lactase—the enzyme that breaks down lactose in milk—milk and other milk-based products can cause them diarrhea or other digestive upset.

Chicken Bones
Feeding your pet raw bones may seem like a natural option, but chicken bones splinter easily and can cause choking or may become lodged in your pet’s digestive tract.

Potato Chips
Who doesn’t like to crunch? While one or two plain chips may not pose a threat, large amounts of salt can produce excessive thirst and urination or even sodium ion poisoning in pets. Signs that your pet may have eaten too many chips include vomiting, diarrhea, depression, tremors, elevated body temperature, seizures and even death. In other words, keep those salty snacks to yourself!

A little sweet, a little tart—and a lot hazardous! Citrus plants contain citric acid, limonin and oils that can cause irritation, and possibly even central nervous system depression, if ingested in significant amounts. Clinical signs of central nervous system depression include vomiting, diarrhea, depression and potential photosensitivity.

Piña Colada
We know they’re tasty, but any beveragecontaining alcohol can cause vomiting, diarrhea, decreased coordination, central nervous system depression, difficulty breathing, tremors, abnormal blood acidity, coma and even death in our animals. So please, keep you summer cocktails out of your pet’s reach.

Interested in more food hazards? Please visit the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center.



Joelle Schuessler

These may be hard to find a about a dollar a box more expensive than frosty paws but I think they are better if you don't have time to make some yourself.

Suzy Johnson

Breyers is now making a lactose-free vanilla ice cream. Wonder if that's okay cause my coonhound loves his ice cream!


My dogs go INSANE over bananas! So in the summer I chop some up and throw them in the freezer for a nice cold treat

Patti Maki

I buy a bag of cheap frozen broccoli florets and give my dog a handful when it's hot. He loves it!

Steve Killp

I like the homemade treats... my pups get frozen PB cubes. We use our ice cube tray, scoop in a teaspoon, well a generous teaspoon of PB into each cube tray slot. We use a natural PB, but probably any would do. Anyway, its inexpensive, easy to do, and keeps the pups happy. Sometimes we put a milk bone in each slot as well.

Steve Kilp

PB = Peanut butter.

Raw chicken bones are fine to feed and are widely used in raw feeding diets.
Cooked bones of any kind should not be fed as these splinter and can cause the problems described above.

If anyone's interested in learning about raw feeding or have a Husky and would like to join a forum giving advice on both please visit


Instead of ice cream or frosty paws, slice bananas and put the slices in an ice tray, fill with water, and freeze. The dogs love it!

Andrea Miller

Like humans,safe treats for dogs are good in small amounts. My Parsons Jack Russel loves the drive thru at the Ice Cream place....he gets his own.