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How Much Chocolate Can A Dog Eat?

Hello, Good People. How are you? We hope this pandemic era does not stop you from taking your dogs for a walk. Do not forget to feed your loyal furry pal with the right, healthy meals.

Speaking of healthy meals, how about chocolate? How much chocolate can a dog eat, actually? Before you decide to give it any, check out some of these facts.

How Much Chocolate Can A Dog Eat
Photo by Torsten Dettlaff

Why Can’t Dogs Have Chocolate?

Is it possible for dogs to eat chocolate? After all, some of them may not be able to resist taking a bite. Although not as curious as cats, dogs without proper training can eat whatever they like.

Before you decide to let your dog have even a slice of your brownie or chocolate bar, stop. There is a toxic ingredient in chocolate that can be seriously harmful to it. The chemical form is called theobromine. Another chemical that is also inside chocolate is called caffeine.

Both ingredients are equally bad for both cats and dogs. These chemicals can cause your dogs to suffer these physical reactions:

-       Vomiting

-       Diarrhea

-       Hyperactivity and anxiety

-       Pancreatitis (inflammation in the dog’s pancreas)

-       Abnormally rapid heart rate

-       Seizures

Beware, be scared. If your dog falls into a coma after eating chocolate, get it to the vet immediately. Chances are, your dog could die.

·         Dark Chocolate Has More Chemicals

So, how much chocolate can a dog eat? Especially during Halloween, it is common that dogs tend to go after chocolate. It does not matter if it is dark chocolate, milk chocolate, or even white chocolate. When you look away or get distracted, they can be as quick as cats for a lick or a bite.

The darker the chocolate, the more caffeine and theobromine it contains. Why can’t dogs have chocolate? Here are some of the measurements on how much these sweet treats can poison your beloved pups and human’s best friends:

-       Over 0.5 ounces of milk chocolate per pound of the dog’s body weight can cause it to suffer poisoning.

-       Over 0.13 ounces of semi-sweet or dark chocolate per pound of the dog’s body weight can have the same dangerous effect.

-       If your dog eats only dark chocolate, consider that a 911 emergency.

In this case, three types of dogs are more vulnerable to chocolate poisoning:

-       Puppies

-       Older dogs

-       Dogs that are sick at the moment with another cause

How Long Does It Take for a Dog to Get Sick After Eating Chocolate?

Good People, it is true that we cannot watch our lovely pets at all times. No matter how careful we are, some of them can get really sneaky. Even when we have hidden the stash somewhere safely, their noses always guide their way to it.

So, how long does it take for a dog to get sick after eating chocolate?

For starters, the easiest symptoms to spot is when your dog suffers from diarrhea or vomiting. When that happens, call your vet immediately. While waiting for your vet to make a house visit, monitor your dog’s condition from time to time. If it worsens, alert your vet again right away.

Another choice would be to get your sick dog to the vet immediately. That way, your dog will be taken care of by the one with more expertise. If you know that your dog has eaten the chocolate in less than a couple of hours, inducing vomiting and doses of charcoal are usually the first options for emergency treatment.

The treatment will include inducing vomiting and multiple doses of activated charcoal. This is to decontaminate your dog’s upset stomach. Depending on the severity of chocolate poisoning, there are various medications and methods to be done:

-       To help your dog excrete, aggressive IV fluids can be used.

-       To calm your anxious dog, sedatives can be administered.

-       If your pet has an abnormal heart rate and blood pressure, some specific medications can also be used.

-       If your dog has a seizure as the reaction to chocolate poisoning, the vet will need to medicate it with drugs to reduce the convulsion.

The problem with theobromine is how easy it is to be reabsorbed across the wall of your dog’s bladder. If that happens, a urinary catheter or frequent walks may be needed. What matters is that the dog’s bladder stays empty.

For recovery, your dog can eat bland food (boiled chicken and rice) and drink lots of fresh water.

·         How to Prevent the Same Thing from Happening Again

How much chocolate can a dog eat? The answer is none. Besides hiding your sweet treats well, do not forget to train your dog. Teach it not to eat anything that falls on the floor. It is easy. Another way is to distract your dog with stuffed toys when it feels bored.

So, Good People, let’s make sure your dogs stay healthy and away from chocolate. Take your furry pals for a regular stroll.

Thank you for sticking around.