We’re so use to sharing human foods and snacks with our dogs. But there is one snack in particular that you should hold back on sharing and that’s chocolate! I know what you’re thinking… surely just a little piece now and then won’t hurt? But the scary truth is for your doggo, it could. Chocolate harms dogs.
If you’re a seasoned dog owner than you’ll know better than to leave your stash of chocolate out in the open where your dog can indulge to his heart’s content. but we all know mistakes can happen or even if they’ve had chocolate before and they’ve experienced no symptoms, there may be a time where you might not be so lucky. So it’s important that if something happened to remain calm and know how to react so save your dog.
Reactions can vary based on the dogs breed, size and weight and can take up to 12 hours to show, but there are common symptoms to tell your dog may have digested some chocolate:
- Abdominal pains
- Severe agitation
- Muscle tremors
- Irregular heart rhythm
- High body temperature
Why chocolate harms dogs
Here’s the sciency bit…
Chocolate contains the chemical theobromine, that is poisonous to dogs and other animals. Generally speaking, the darker the chocolate the more the more dangerous it is for dogs as it’ll contain more of the theobromine chemical. White chocolate also contains small amounts of theobromine but it’s very unlikely to cause poisoning but can on the other hand still make you dog un well because it’s quite fatty.
With Easter coming up, it’s usually a time vets see a spike in chocolate poisoning in pets. So now you know why chocolate harms dogs, try and be vigilant where you can, especially if you have small children or you plan on hosting an Easter chocolate EGGstravaganza. Also look out for things like wrappers; although they aren’t poisonous, they can cause obstruction in your dog’s throats or bowels if eaten.
What to do if your dog consumes chocolate
At most times your dog will vomit on his or her own but if you’re worried; the Vets Now website provides a chocolate toxicity calculator to help pet owners determine whether or not your dog has consumed a poisonous amount of chocolate. If your dog continues to be in distress, then head straight to your vets. It’ll be helpful for your vet, if you know what type of chocolate they ate and how much.