Can Dogs Eat Lemon Chicken? (The Risks!)

Chicken has an array of recipes worldwide, but lemon chicken is a winning contender.

It’s delicious with a citrus aroma, so irresistible.

The fluffy friend may want some when you decide to treat your family to this delicacy.

After all, he is also a part of the family.

However, you are restrained by the fear of feeding him something unhealthy.

So, can dogs eat lemon chicken?

No, dogs cannot eat a chicken lemon.

Lemon contains psoralens and oils that affect the dog’s nervous system and cause stomach upset.

The spices in the lemon chicken are toxic, and it has a lot of fat which may affect your pup’s health.

In this article, we will look into whether lemon chicken is fit for dog consumption.

The ingredients that make it harmful to dogs, the toxic lemon components and other healthy food options.

Can Dogs Eat Lemon Chicken

Harmful ingredients in lemon chicken

The ingredients in chicken lemon make it harmful to the dog.

They include:


Lemon chicken contains too much fat because it is cooked using butter.

Fat in your dog’s diet can cause pancreatitis, which is the inflammation of the pancreas.

If left untreated, it can lead to death.

Signs of pancreatitis include abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea.

It can also cause obesity, breathing difficulties, heart disease from high blood pressure, and diabetes from insulin resistance.


The lemon sauce may contain sugar which leads to obesity.

Too much sugar makes it difficult for dogs to regulate their blood sugar levels.

Consequently, they will crave more food to balance their blood sugar levels again.

The result is overeating hence becoming overweight.

High-level sugar also causes diabetes.

Diabetic dogs often experience increased thirst and urination and frequent bowel movements or diarrhea.

Their bodies cannot properly process sugar anymore due to damage to nerves needed for proper blood glucose regulation.


Lemon chicken may contain lots of salt that causes electrolyte imbalance leading to vomiting, diarrhea, and weakness in dogs.

They may also experience increased thirst and urination due to the loss of sodium in their body fluids. 

High-salt levels can also cause dehydration in dogs with kidney problems because they cannot properly regulate their water balance.

Severe dehydration can lead to seizures or even death if it’s not treated quickly enough by your veterinarian.

Garlic and onion

Lemon chicken may be spiced with onions and garlic, which are toxic to dogs.

If your dog overheats, he’s likely to develop anemia which can be fatal.

The compounds that cause this reaction are allyl propyl disulfide and thiosulphate.

These compounds are found in both raw and cooked forms of garlic and onion.

In addition to causing anemia, garlic or onion poisoning can cause vomiting, diarrhea, or blood in the stool.

Your dog may also experience lethargy or weakness.

If you think your pet has consumed either garlic or onion, contact your veterinarian immediately for treatment advice.

Toxic chemicals in lemon that are harmful to dogs

Lemon contains components that are known to be toxic to dogs.

They include:

  • Limonene 

Limonene is a colorless liquid that smells like a combination of lemon and pine.

It is found in citrus fruits and is used as a flavoring agent.

However, it can be toxic to dogs.

If ingested in large quantities, it causes gastrointestinal upset and liver damage.

  • Psoralen 

Psoralens are compounds that cause skin allergies in dogs, especially when combined with ultraviolet light.

Moreover, it causes vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst and urination, depression, weakness, and anemia.

These symptoms usually occur within 24 hours after exposure to psoralen.

If exposure continues or your dog consumes large amounts of lemon, he could develop liver damage or kidney failure.

  • Linalool 

Linalool is a lemon essential oil with a strong citrus aroma and is used to flavor foods and beverages.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns that large amounts of linalool could be toxic for dogs if ingested.

It causes vomiting, diarrhea, and other gastrointestinal problems.

High doses of linalool can affect the central nervous system, cause depression, or even cause death in dogs when ingested.

Other healthy foods to give your dog instead of lemon chicken

  • Eggs – Eggs are a great source of protein for your dog. The egg yolk contains many fats and cholesterol, essential for their development. However, egg whites should not be fed to your dog as they have no nutritional value.
  • Carrots- Carrots are an excellent source of beta-carotene, which is converted into vitamin A in the dog’s liver. They’re also high in fiber which helps improve digestion in dogs who suffer from constipation or diarrhea.
  • Oatmeal- Oatmeal is a high-fiber food that can help with digestion and weight loss. It’s also high in vitamins B and E and minerals like manganese, zinc, phosphorus, and potassium.
  • Broccoli- Broccoli contains vitamin C, which helps boost your immune system and fight off infection. It also contains vitamin K, which helps prevent blood clotting and keeps your bones strong. Broccoli is rich in antioxidants like beta-carotene and lutein, which protect your cells from damage caused by free radicals.
  • Apples – you can give a small amount to dogs as they will digest them easily without causing any side effects. However, do not give your dog unpeeled apples as these contain cyanide which can cause organ damage if consumed in large quantities.
  • Plain chicken- Chicken is an excellent source of protein for dogs because it contains all essential amino acids necessary for good health. It also provides B vitamins and minerals such as phosphorus, iron, and zinc (which help prevent anemia). 


We hope this article was helpful in your search on whether dogs can eat lemon chicken.

Avoid giving your mutt lemon chicken and ensure you store it properly to prevent him from stealing it.

Instead, you can settle for other healthy food options.

If your dog mistakenly eats lemon chicken, relax and observe if he shows any symptoms of sickness.

The signs should show within 24 hours.

If they are severe, call your veterinarian or visit a veterinary clinic for a check-up.

Megan Turner

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