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Published: Aug 13, 2012

Many humans subscribe to the school of thought that variety is the spice of life, especially when it comes to their diet. However, while some pet owners worry that their dogs may be bored with the same food every day, vets say supplementing with or relying solely on table foods can be risky.

According to VCA Animal Hospitals, humans and dogs have different nutritional needs, so their diets must be different.

In addition to different dietary requirements, certain foods can make your dog sick.

Avocado, for instance, contains a substance called persin that can be toxic to dogs, according to Web MD. Other flavorful foods that are dangerous for dogs include garlic, onions, grapes, raisins, macadamia nuts, chives, salt and nutmeg.

You may know that chocolate is a no-no for pets, but perhaps you're not sure why this is. According to the ASPCA, chocolate contains methylxanthines, which can cause vomiting, diarrhea, panting, excessive thirst and urination, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythm, tremors, seizures and even death if ingested by a pet.

Other foods that contain methylxanthines include coffee, tea and other caffeinated items.

While many people may give their cat a bowl of milk, it's not advised to feed your dog milk or other dairy products. According to Web MD, milk and milk-based products can cause digestive problems, including diarrhea. Additionally, some animals may be allergic to dairy products.

Pet owners who enjoy baking may be tempted to share some of their creations with their dogs. However, experts say sweets are not good for animals. In addition, baking soda, baking powder and yeast dough can make your dog very sick.

It's also important to keep your dog away from any beverages containing alcohol, as its effects may be concentrated in animals.

What should you do if your animal accidentally or inadvertently ingests a food that may cause him harm? Calling a vet hospital can be helpful, even if you only suspect your pet may be in danger. The ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center is also a great resource. The number is (888) 426-4435.