Chocolate + Dogs = Toxic?

Woof! means "No chocolate!"

Dogs and chocolate don’t mix.  I remember hearing people tell me it could kill a dog if they ate it.  You’ve probably heard this before, but I actually didn’t understand the reason why until very recently.  Do you have to start administering the doggie Heimlich if they eat your birthday cupcake?  Let’s not get frantic!

Why can’t dogs have chocolate, you ask?  Well, the answer is very simple.  Chocolate contains a chemical called theobromine, which in humans has been found to help increase blood flow by widening the arteries and stimulate the heart.  Canines metabolize chocolate more slowly and it becomes toxic in sufficient quantities, which depends on variables like the individual sensitivity, animal size and chocolate concentration.  The more they eat and the more real chocolate in the product, the more toxic the result.

There is no antidote for toxicity, but it is treatable when caught early on.  The chocolate usually passes through the animal’s body within 12-24 hours of ingestion.  By the way, cats are not as likely to go for chocolate since they don’t have sweet taste receptors.  If you suspect your dog (or cat) has eaten chocolate, contact your vet immediately so they can take the correct course of action.

So keep the chocolate away from your pets.  Eat it yourself!

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One Response to Chocolate + Dogs = Toxic?

  1. Pingback: The heat is on! | The Quest for Incredible Chocolate

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