Whenever I have some chocolate (which can be more often than is good for me) the dogs crowd around like all their birthdays and christmases have come at once!
That doesn’t mean to say they’re going to get any!
That’s because I’m well aware that one thing that you should never give to a dog is chocolate. You might think that just a tiny piece is ok and they seem to go crazy for it, but even a tiny piece could send your beloved friend into doggy heaven quicker than some poisons. It is NOT for dogs!
Chocolate contains a chemical called theobromine and even small amounts can cause vomiting, restlessness, and seizures in dogs. Larger amounts can be fatal.
This is becausea dog’s digestive system cannot metabolise the theobromine in the chocolate. Different doses will affect different sized dogs. Also, different types of chocolate contain varying levels of theobromine. The dark chocolate used for cooking and baking contains roughly six times as much theobromine as ordinary milk chocolate.
So if your dog manages to steal some chocolate when you’re not looking, you need to get him to a vet as soon as possible as by thinking he’ll be fine may be just the kind of thinking that’ll end up getting him killed.
For reference purposes, here’s a rough guide as to the amount of chocolate that would be fatal in different sized dogs:
Between 4 and 10 oz. of milk chocolate, or only ½ to 1 oz. of baking chocolate for small dogs such as Chihuahuas, Yorkshire Terriers or Toy Poodles.
Between 1 and 1-1/2 lbs. of milk chocolate or 2 to 3 oz. of baking chocolate for medium-size dogs like Cocker Spaniels, Staffordshire Terriers and Basset Hounds.
Between 2 to 4-1/2 lbs. of milk chocolate or 4 to 8 oz. of baking chocolate for large dogs such as Collies, Retrievers and Labradors.
This is only a guide and the best rule of thumb is to never give your dog chocolate from the word go and be vigilant about leaving any chocolate around the house where he might be able to get at it.
Although specially adapted “doggy chocolate” is safe for dogs to eat, because all the theobromine has been removed, it is still best not to give them any as it creates a taste for chocolate and they will be more likely to try to steal some if it’s within their reach when you’re not looking.
So if you want to treat your dog, give him a propiety doggy chew or dog biscuit instead. You’ll be doing him a great favour and avoiding any unnecessary risk to his health or even his life.
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