Chocolate is dangerous for dogs and dog owners do what they can to prevent their dog from eating it. We all know that chocolate is toxic to dogs and that we need to take steps to avoid accidents, but it still happens, and these accidents will continue. Do you know what to do when a dog eats chocolate? Everything you need to know about what steps to take when a dog eats chocolate is listed below:
Dogs and Chocolate
Chocolate is harmful because it contains theobromine and, to a lesser degree, caffeine. These are both stimulants that affect the cardiovascular and nervous system. Humans can metabolize these chemicals easily, but dogs cannot. They are metabolized slowly which in turn causes symptoms that are associated with chocolate poisoning.
Different types of chocolate are more toxic than others. Cocoa and baker’s are the most toxic. White and milk chocolate are not as poisonous BUT can still cause clinical signs and toxicity. Cocoa and baker’s are the most toxic because they contain elevated levels of theobromine content. The rule of thumb is the darker the chocolate the more deadly it can be.
What Can Happen If a Dog Eats Chocolate?
The clinical signs of chocolate poisoning depend on the dosage and the size of the dog. Bigger dogs who eat a small amount of chocolate should be fine and at most have a stomachache, diarrhea, or vomiting. Small dogs who devoured a whole bag of dark chocolate are in serious danger.
Clinical signs of chocolate toxicity include:
- Tremors in the muscles and limbs
- Irregular heartbeats
- Increased heart rate
What To Do When Dogs Eat Chocolate?
If you fear your pup has eaten chocolate, first monitor them for symptoms of poisoning. If you are unsure of the signs call Pet Poison Helpline® at (855) 764-7661 where the trusted experts can give you the right answers and can help with what to do next. Depending on the amount your dog ate, a clinic visit may be necessary. There your vet will give your dog the proper treatment they need after assessing the situation. If your dog ate chocolate do not wait around to see what can happen and act immediately for your best friend.