My Dog Just Ate Chocolate – What Are My Next Steps?

Dark, milk, baker’s, and white chocolate are like a rainbow of deliciousness. What if my dog just ate chocolate? What are my next steps? First, get your dog away from chocolate and then take them to a vet. Your vet will decide the correct course of treatment. Most dogs can recover from chocolate poisoning.  

Chocolate poisoning can be fatal in some cases. Theobromine is the component in chocolate that is toxic to your furry friend. Different types of chocolate have different levels of theobromine, but all types of chocolate are poisonous. White chocolate contains the smallest concentration of theobromine.  

What are Symptoms of Chocolate Poisoning in my Dog? 

Chocolate poisoning mostly affects circulatory, neurological, and renal systems. The symptoms of theobromine poisoning in dogs may not appear within 12 hours after eating chocolate. Symptoms might worsen and last for up to three days. You should keep an eye out for the following clinical signs: 

  • diarrhea
  • Agitation and restlessness
  • vomiting
  • body tremors
  • elevated heart rate & pressure
  • seizures & collapse


How do you Prevent Dogs from Eating Chocolate?  

As a rule of thumb, don’t leave any type of chocolate out in the open; this is the most common reason dogs snatch chocolate. It is never acceptable to use chocolate as a reward for your dog, even though it is a great way to treat yourself, your children and your loved ones. It’s preferable to reward your dog with a treat made specifically for dogs, such as a piece of cooked meat or a piece of fruit or vegetable. 

More preventive actions could prevent chocolate poisoning. Teach your dog to eat only what you give them. Talk to your family and friends about the importance of keeping chocolate away from your dog. Other chocolate products, like cocoa, are harmful as well.  

Pet Poison Helpline® (855) 764-7661 can help you if your dog has eaten chocolate and is experiencing symptoms then it may be time to be checked out by a vet. Follow the steps described above to ensure your dog is safe.