Why Shouldn’t Dogs Eat Chocolate

Theobromine, naproxen, and lidocaine cannot be adequately metabolized or broken down in dogs with a certain mutation in their CYP1A2 gene (the variant is 1117C>T). This could explain why some dogs become ill after ingesting only a small amount of chocolate and has crucial consequences for their medical care.

What should you do, then, if you think your dog may have consumed chocolate? You have several choices. To determine if your dog is likely to have symptoms, use an internet calculator like this one or contact animal poison control (1-888-426-4435 in Canada and the U.S.). You should keep a close eye on your dog regardless of what they say, checking for symptoms such a high heart rate, vomiting, or tremors, while keeping in mind that such resources are not a replacement for veterinary care.

You should take your dog to the vet immediately away if they consumed an unknown amount of chocolate, are displaying symptoms, are pregnant (theobromine can cross the placenta and impact the puppy), or have any other health issues. Veterinarian anti-chocolate remedies are most successful if administered as soon as possible after intake, even if symptoms may not appear for up to two hours after ingestion.

What precisely is done to treat theobromine poisoning in dogs? Decontamination of the stomach. Emptying the stomach is the first step (if the ingestion was recent enough). This frequently involves the use of the chemical apomorphine, which is injected into the eye to be swiftly absorbed.

A veterinarian will then give activated charcoal, a finely powdered substance that can bind a range of medications and chemicals. Because it turns your dog’s stool black, activated charcoal is typically given by combining it with wet dog food as soon as possible after ingesting the poison. Charcoal must occasionally be administered again, although it can also be effective with just one dose.

A theobromine-intoxicated dog will only receive medication to treat their specific symptoms after these steps, such as Diazepam for seizures or hyperexcitability, beta blockers for a fast heart rate, atropine for a low heart rate, or other medications.

It turns out that cats are more prone to theobromine poisoning than dogs, despite the fact that we never hear of a cat becoming ill after eating chocolate. How come?

primarily because dogs tend to eat more recklessly than cats do. While cats tend to be fussy eaters, dogs are infamous for eating almost anything they can get their hands on, even joint butts, which puts them at risk for cannabis toxicity. This can be partially explained by the fact that cats cannot taste glucose.

You probably wouldn’t eat much of it if all chocolate tasted like 100% dark chocolate.

Takeaway message

  • Theobromine, which dogs cannot adequately metabolize, is the main reason why chocolate is deadly to dogs.
  • With respect to weight, a dog’s ability to consume chocolate without developing symptoms varies significantly.
  • If your dog consumes chocolate, you should keep a close eye on them and take them to the vet if they exhibit any symptoms, are very young, pregnant, or have other health issues.

Special thanks to Henry, who, as you may assume, inspired this paper by eating chocolate, and Rachel Malkani, a veterinary PhD candidate and MSc. CDBC.

How much chocolate canine consumption?

According to the Merck/Merial Manual for Veterinary Health, chocolate includes both theobromine and caffeine, both of which can raise a dog’s heart rate and excite their nervous system. Calculate your dog’s risk of toxicity using this simple application. The likelihood that your dog may get sick after eating chocolate depends on the type, quantity, and weight of the dog. Various forms of chocolate have different amounts of these harmful ingredients. Following are a few chocolate varieties, listed by theobromine content:

  • cocoa butter (most toxic)
  • Unsweetened chocolate for baking
  • Unsweetened chocolate
  • a deep chocolate
  • chocolate milk

You and your veterinarian can decide whether you have an emergency by knowing how much and what sort of chocolate your dog consumed. A dog would typically have minor signs of chocolate toxicity at 20 mg of methylxanthines per kilogram of body weight. Around 40 to 50 mg/kg of chocolate causes cardiac symptoms, while 60 mg/kg or more causes convulsions.

That translates into a pretty alarming dose of chocolate, which is roughly one ounce of milk chocolate for every pound of body weight. Even one Hershey’s Milk Chocolate bar, which weighs 1.55 ounces on average, can have harmful effects, especially for little dogs. On the other side, your dog generally won’t die from eating a tiny piece of chocolate bar or a crumb of chocolate cake, especially if it is a larger breed. Nevertheless, chocolate should never be given as a treat.

What occurs when a dog consumes chocolate?

Yes, dogs are poisoned by chocolate. Although seldom fatal, eating chocolate can cause serious disease. Theobromine, a substance found in chocolate together with caffeine, makes it poisonous. The major poison in chocolate, theobromine is extremely similar to caffeine. Both substances have medical uses as a smooth muscle relaxant, blood vessel dilater, diuretic, and stimulant of the heart. Theobromine and caffeine are not metabolized by dogs as well as they are by humans. Dogs are therefore more susceptible to the impacts of the toxins.

How much chocolate is poisonoustoadog?

The type of chocolate affects how much theobromine is poisonous. The danger of chocolate to dogs increases with its darkness and bitterness. Gourmet dark chocolate and baking chocolate are extremely concentrated and have a theobromine content per ounce of 130–450 mg. Only 44–58 mg/ounce are present in typical milk chocolate. With approximately 0.25 mg of theobromine per ounce, white chocolate rarely offers a risk of chocolate poisoning. Dogs can get sick from the chocolate’s fat and sugar even if the amount consumed is not toxic. In severe situations or in dogs with particularly sensitive stomachs, they can lead to pancreatitis. In order to put this into perspective, consider that a medium-sized dog weighing 50 pounds would only have to consume 1 ounce of baker’s chocolate or 9 ounces of milk chocolate in order to possibly exhibit poisoning symptoms. Small amounts of milk chocolate are generally not dangerous for dogs to consume.

What are the clinical signs of chocolate poisoning?

Clinical symptoms vary according to the type and amount of chocolate consumed. The most frequent clinical symptoms in many dogs include excessive urination, excessive panting, increased thirst, restlessness, vomiting, and diarrhea. Muscle tremors, convulsions, and heart failure are among the symptoms that might appear in severe cases. The prognosis for chocolate poisoning can go worse due to complications including aspiration pneumonia from vomiting. If in doubt, quick veterinary care is advised if a poisonous quantity of chocolate is consumed.

Why are dogs not allowed to eat chocolate?

Ever ponder why dogs should avoid chocolate? It all boils down to one molecule, claims a recent American Chemical Society film. Dogs can readily consume enough theobromine, a caffeine-like chemical that stimulates blood flow to the brain, to make them toxic. Smaller amounts of chocolate can still trigger seizures and other symptoms in dogs, even though rarely deadly amounts are consumed. Because dark chocolate has more theobromine than milk chocolate, it is worse, and smaller canines are more susceptible. Although cats are much more at risk than dogs, they aren’t nearly as drawn to the treat because they can’t taste sweetness.

Why are humans allowed to eat chocolate but not dogs?

Sweet chocolate; chocolate. Some of us enjoy it periodically as a treat, while others crave chocolate constantly. Some of us have a single favorite chocolate, while others have a variety. Some of us enjoy chocolate on its own, while others enjoy it in desserts and drinks. Despite our varied palates, it is difficult to meet a pet owner who does not enjoy chocolate.

However, one food that we should never give our pets is chocolate. Dogs get poisoned by it, and it may even be fatal.

Why does disease exist? Chocolate contains a lot of caffeine and a chemical called theobromine, both of which are members of a naturally occurring class of stimulants called methylxanthines that can make animals sick. The compounds have an effect on the neurological system and can make an animal agitated, cause vomiting and diarrhea, stimulate urine, and elevate heart rate.

So why are we the only species that can consume chocolate? Theobromine and caffeine are not metabolized by dogs as well as they are by humans. The substances build up in the body of the animal to a hazardous or even lethal level. For instance, a dog will require 17 1/2 hours to completely digest and eliminate the theobromine it has consumed. In addition, dogs have a tendency to consume far more chocolate than a person would. For a smaller dog, 10 grams of baker’s chocolate and 150 grams for an average-sized dog can result in theobromine poisoning.

What are fatal and poisonous doses? A dose of 100–200 mg/kg of theobromine can cause the death of 50% of dogs who have consumed chocolate. After ingesting 20 mg/kg of chocolate, intoxication symptoms (vomiting, diarrhea, increased water consumption, and urination) can be observed.

Theobromine content of chocolate Depending on the type of chocolate, theobromine content varies:

Theobromine and caffeine are not found in great quantities in white chocolate, which isn’t actually chocolate manufactured from cacao beans.

Prevention. Preventing chocolate toxicosis is the best treatment. If your dog eats chocolate, there is a substantial risk of poisoning. Make sure chocolate is out of reach from your dog and teach them not to eat it.

However, what if it does? Call your veterinarian right away and let him know how much and what kind of chocolate was consumed, when it was consumed, and the size of the dog if you discover that your dog has eaten chocolate or if the animal exhibits any symptoms of chocolate intoxication, such as restlessness, excessive thirst, urination, or diarrhea.

1. Your veterinarian will give you instructions on how to make your dog vomit, or you can take your dog to a hospital to have vomiting made for you if the ingestion was recent (emesis). Additionally, the animal will be given activated charcoal, and finally his stomach will be irrigated (gastric levage).

2. Your veterinarian will offer supportive therapy to aid in your dog’s body’s detoxification if enough time has passed and the poison has already been absorbed. Drugs to decrease hyperexcitability and cardiac arrhythmias, as well as intravenous fluids to enhance urine elimination of toxins, are examples of supportive therapy.

Advice can be obtained from the Animal Poison Control Center (a $60 consultation fee may be charged to your credit card). 1-800-548-2423.

Do dogs have milk teeth?

When consumed in moderation, milk is a safe indulgence. Occasionally rewarding your dog with a few tablespoons of cow’s milk or goat’s milk can be pleasant without the negative effects of overindulgence. However, it’s usually best to refrain from giving your dog an entire bowl at once because doing so can result in unpleasant side effects including diarrhea, vomiting, and loose feces.

Because of the beverage’s high fat and natural sugar content, you should only give your dog a tiny amount of it. An excessive amount of fat in your dog’s food can cause pancreatitis and obesity, both of which are serious diseases.

Why are grapes inedible to dogs?

No matter what breed, age, or gender a dog is, grapes and raisins are extremely poisonous to them. Ongoing study is being done to determine why.

Kidney damage is associated with grape intoxication. The fruit can cause abrupt renal failure and possibly death if consumed.

Unknown toxin in grapes prevents dogs from metabolizing their tannins, flavonoids, and monosaccharides. This might be the main cause of canine grape poisoning.

Why are onions inedible to dogs?

N-propyl disulfide is a poisonous substance found in onions. This substance makes red blood cells degrade, which makes dogs anemic.

The poison attaches to the oxygen molecules in your dog’s red blood cells, causing oxidative damage to the cells. This decreases the red blood cells’ capacity to transport oxygen and deceives your dog’s body into believing that the blood cell is an outsider. Hemolysis, the process by which red blood cells are destroyed, causes hemolytic anemia.

made entirely of pumpkin. Pumpkin-flavored dog snacks and vitamins are also widely available.

Raspberries Dogs can indeed consume raspberries. In moderation, raspberries are acceptable. They are healthy for dogs since they contain antioxidants. They are high in fiber, manganese, and vitamin C but low in sugar and calories. Raspberries offer anti-inflammatory characteristics that can benefit aging joints, making them particularly beneficial for older dogs. Even so, your dog should only consume up to a cup of raspberries at a time because they do contain trace quantities of xylitol.

Strawberries Yes, strawberries are edible by dogs. Strawberry fiber and vitamin C content is high. They also include an enzyme that, when consumed by your dog, can assist in whitening his or her teeth. Give them sparingly because they contain sugar.

Dogs should stay away from tomatoes. While tomatoes’ ripe fruit is typically regarded as healthy for canines, the plant’s green parts are poisonous due to a compound called solanine. While a dog would need to consume a considerable amount of the tomato plant to make him or her sick, it’s better to shun tomatoes all together simply to be safe.

Watermelon Yes, dogs can eat watermelon. It’s crucial to remove the rind and seeds first, as these might cause intestinal blockage, but watermelon flesh is otherwise safe for dogs. It’s full of vitamin A, B-6, and C, as well as potassium. Watermelon contains 92 percent water, so it’s a terrific way to help keep your dog hydrated on hot summer days. (You can even purchase watermelon-flavored dog treats these days.)