Why Chocolate is Bad for Dogs
Most humans love chocolate and it would seem only natural to share that tasty bar of chocolate with your dog, but hold on! Chocolate can be toxic to dogs, causing them to be very ill and in some instances can be fatal. Chocolate contains cocoa; a key chemical in cocoa is theobromine.
Although humans can break down this chemical easily within their bodies, dogs and cats metabolize this chemical extremely slowly, which can have devastating effects on your pet’s health. Dogs are very opportunistic when it comes to food, so it may be that you are aware that chocolate can be dangerous to dogs, unfortunately, your dog does not know this and if he gets to snaffle a bar of chocolate whilst his owner is not looking then problems can occur.
Symptoms of chocolate poisoning include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, difficulty breathing and seizures. Your dog will need to be looked over by a vet, and if you suspect that your dog has ingested chocolate it is important to let your vet know. Dark chocolate contains more theobromine than lighter varieties and as little as two one ounce squares can cause toxicity in a 20 pound dog. The first thing to do if you witness that your dog has eaten chocolate is to try and induce your dog to vomit, this helps to get the product out of your dog’s system and can prevent it entering the bloodstream, this is a useful tactic up to two hours after your dog has ingested chocolate.
If your dog is having seizures or is in a coma then immediate emergency attention by a vet is needed. To induce vomiting a teaspoon of 3% hydrogen peroxide per 10lbs of body weight can do the trick, walk your dog around so that this mixture hits its stomach sooner and vomiting should occur within 20 minutes. This process can be repeated one extra time if the first time is not successful but if this does not work immediately contact your vet.