Monday, April 16, 2007

Why Chocolate Poisons Dogs??!!

Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're going to get. "Forrest Gump - Tom Hanks".

I am sure most of us love the taste and the melting of the chocolate in our mouth and I believe no exception should be given to our pet dog. I bet they will love it too. However be warn about the consequences of giving our beloved pet dogs chocolate.

Followings is an article adopted from

While the pathetic begging look that goes across the face of a dog wanting chocolate can weaken the most stoic dog owner, stay firm. Do not give in. Ever.

Once dogs have tasted chocolate, they want more.

Moreover, for dogs, that is a bad thing.

You might disagree, thinking back to a time when you noticed a dog enjoying a tidbit of chocolate with no deleterious effect.

Do not be fooled.

The problem, according to veterinary experts, is that eating a speck of chocolate leads a dog to crave more. It can mean that your dog will jump at an opportunity to get any type of chocolate, not knowing that certain chocolates are more lethal than other types. Larger amounts of chocolate, particularly of the most toxic type, can bring about epileptic seizures in some dogs, and in all dogs, can kill.

"Chocolate ingestion are one common reason why pet owners and veterinarians call us," said Dana Farbman, Certified Veterinary Technician and Manager, Client and professional Relations, ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. "However, it would be difficult to verify an exact ranking in frequency of calls, as the types of substances we receive calls on can vary greatly depending on many factors, including the time of year. We generally do experience somewhat of a rise in chocolate calls around holidays, such as Halloween, Easter, Christmas, Valentine's Day and Mother's Day.

Why is Chocolate Lethal?

Chocolate contains theobromine. A naturally occurring stimulant found in the cocoa bean, theobromine increases urination and affects the central nervous system as well as heart muscle. While amounts vary by type of chocolate, the theobromine is poisonous to dogs.

You can recognize that your dog has eaten a toxic dose of chocolate from the symptoms. Within the first few hours, the evidence includes vomiting, diarrhea or hyperactivity. As time passes and there's increased absorption of the toxic substance, you'll see an increase in the dog's heart rate, which can cause arrhythmia, restlessness, hyperactivity, muscle twitching, increased urination or excessive panting.

The theobromine will remain in their bloodstream for up to 20 hours, and these animals may experience epileptic seizures, heart attacks, internal bleeding, and eventually death. How Much Chocolate Is Deadly?

If a 50-pound dog eats a teaspoonful of milk chocolate, it is not going to cause serious problems. However, if that same dog gorges himself on a two-layer chocolate cake, his stomach will feel more than upset and soon it's likely he'll be vomiting or experiencing diarrhea.

To answer the question "How much is too much" is not simple. The health and age of your dog must be considered. Obviously if your dog is aged and not in top shape, his reaction to a plate of chocolate is going to be different from a young healthy dog of the same weight.

Another fact that must be considered is this: Not all chocolate is the same. Some has a small amount of theobromine; another type has a large amount and still another contains an amount that is somewhere in between. The quantity has a relationship with the weight of your dog. Small dogs can be poisoned; it is easy to understand, from smaller amounts of theobromine than large dogs.

Which chocolate is the safest, relatively speaking? White chocolate. It has the least amount of theobromine: 1 mg per ounce. Far on the other side of the spectrum is baking chocolate, which has a huge 450 mg of theobromine per ounce!

Here are a few other chocolates for you to ponder: hot chocolate, 12 mg of theobromine per ounce; milk chocolate, 60 mg/oz; and up there near baking chocolate: semi-sweet chocolate with 260 mg/oz.

Knowing which chocolate is the most toxic is important, but leaves one wondering how much must be eaten to poison a dog. The list in this box should be helpful. Maybe you can clip it and post it on your refrigerator?

White chocolate: 200 ounces per pound of body weight. It takes 250 pounds of white chocolate to cause signs of poisoning in a 20-pound dog, 125 pounds for a 10-pound dog.

Milk chocolate: 1 ounce per pound of body weight. Approximately one pound of milk chocolate is poisonous to a 20-pound dog; one-half pound for a 10-pound dog. The average chocolate bar contains 2 to 3 ounces of milk chocolate. It would take 2-3 candy bars to poison a 10 pound dog. Semi-sweet chocolate has a similar toxic level.

Sweet cocoa: 0.3 ounces per pound of body weight. One-third of a pound of sweet cocoa is toxic to a 20-pound dog; 1/6 pound for a 10-pound dog.

Baking chocolate: 0.1 ounce per pound body weight. Two one-ounce squares of bakers' chocolate is toxic to a 20-pound dog; one ounce for a 10-pound dog.

Finally yet importantly, after reading this article, if you still could not resist the temptation in giving your dog a chocolate treats, do come to our shop and get chocolate treats, which does not contain theobromine for your pet dog.

Disclaimer: Reading materials in this site are obtained from its respective website and it is for information purposes only. It is not Puppy Cottage Sdn. Bhd. view and it is not to be used against Puppy Cottage Sdn. Bhd.

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