Why Is Chocolate Bad For Dogs?
The bad effects of chocolate on dogs have long been a conversation in the dog community. Some say that their dogs didn’t really experience anything when they ate chocolate, while some say theirs almost died.
The truth is, the bad effects of chocolates are on a case-to-case basis. This is why it’s really important to know how to handle your dog should he shows symptoms of chocolate poisoning.
Why is chocolate bad for dogs to eat?
The toxic component in the chocolate that makes it dangerous for dogs is called theobromine. This substance can easily be digested by humans, making it harmless for us. This is not the case for dogs as they can’t easily digest theobromine resulting in heightened levels of toxins in their stomach.
The more chocolate the dog has consumed, the higher the level of theobromine. Aside from the amount of consumption, the dog’s size is also essential. Basically, a larger dog is less susceptible to chocolate poisoning than a larger one. This is why most dog owners have various experiences when it comes to chocolate poisoning.
Aside from this, it is also worth noting that theobromine can be found in cocoa. This is why dark chocolates are the most dangerous kind while milk ones are the least dangerous. However, this doesn’t mean that milk chocolate is safe. If ingested in large amounts, it can still cause serious side effects to your dog.
What should you do when a dog consumes chocolate?
Because of dogs’ penchant for eating, it can be really hard to avoid accidental ingestion of chocolates. But there are some things you can do in order to address its side effects.
Some people recommend that a teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide mixed with vanilla and water can break down the toxins. While it is effective, it’s not highly recommended for most people as peroxide can also cause harm to your dog.
You can try to induce vomiting by making them continuously walk for 15 minutes. This strenuous activity will help them spit out everything they’ve eaten prior, including the chocolate.
However, suppose you already see symptoms of chocolate poisoning such as restlessness, rapid breathing, diarrhea, vomiting with blood, muscle tensions, and seizure. In that case, it is best that you already consult your veterinary.
How to recover from chocolate poisoning?
Now that you already know what you should do if your dog experiences chocolate poisoning, it’s now time to know how to aid them during the recovery.
If you’ve induced vomiting to expel the chocolate, you must keep your dog well hydrated. It would also be helpful if you’d make a soft meal for him after so he wouldn’t experience any discomfort in eating.
However, should he experienced the symptoms of chocolate poisoning, it’s best that you aid him with probiotics to help his digestion and immunity. It will also help him expel any remnants of the chocolate.
Regaining his strength and stamina will also require more than just a healthy meal. You would need to introduce them to a multivitamin with Omega 3 and 6 as well as joint supplements that will help them be active and energetic again.
While the effects of chocolate vary among dogs, it is best that you reduce any risk by not giving them any. In the end, an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.
Laura Robinson, DMV
Dr Laura practices at the Antonio Animal Hospital in California, where she was born and raised. She is an advisor to Wuffes, ensuring all our products and content is of the highest standard