Chocolate can be poisonous to dogs. Even small amounts of chocolate can pose a danger to dogs because of the sugar and fat in chocolate. Even though chocolate consumption is rarely fatal, it can cause serious illness.
Theobromine, a substance found in chocolate and caffeine, can lead to complications. Theobromine can affect dogs’ metabolisms. Theobromine’s chemical structure is similar to caffeine’s chemical structure and cannot be metabolized by dogs as efficiently as humans.
How much chocolate can be toxic for dogs?
Theobromine content varies from one variety of chocolate to another. The more bitter and dark the chocolate is, the more theobromine it contains, and thus, more harmful to dogs. Theobromine concentrations range from 130 to 450 mg per ounce depending on the type of chocolate.
White chocolate presents a low risk of chocolate poisoning in dogs but there is still a risk. White chocolate contains 0.25 mg per ounce of theobromine.
Milk chocolate typically contains between 44 and 58 mgs per ounce of theobromine.
Bakzr’s chocolate contains heavily concentrated theobromine, around 390 mgs per ounce. Baker’s chocolate is the most dangerous chocolate to dogs.
When dogs ingest chocolate, it can lead to pancreatitis or other clinical signs.
For example, a 50-pound dog would only need to consume one ounce of baker’s chocolate or nine ounces of milk chocolate to exhibit indications of poisoning.
Are there any clinical signs of chocolate poisoning in dogs?
The clinical signs of chocolate poisoning in dogs can be delayed by several hours. The type and quantity of chocolate consumed can affect the type of exhibited clinical signs.
The most common clinical signs are:
- Increased thirst
- Excessive urine
- And other clinical signs
What is the treatment for chocolate poisoning in dogs?
Contact your veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline® as soon as you believe your dog has eaten chocolate. Veterinarians will use fluids to help increase excretion of theobromine and other medications to treat clinical signs. Other medications may be used to induce vomiting.
My dog has eaten chocolate. What should I do?
Call your veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline® as soon as possible, if you suspect your pet has consumed chocolate.