Obviously we are talking more about the effects of chocolate more than the other candies that we as humans love to enjoy on this Easter weekend. Please remember that although we are usually most concerned about chocolate there can be many other toxins on the wide variety of other candies that are now available to us and our kids.
A lot of us still feed our pets the occasional piece of our chocolate bar (power bar) or chocolate chip cookie; I personally saw this last week out side of a coffee shop in our area. Even though our pet does not show any immediate signs of being poisoned, chocolate in any form is a toxin to dogs and should not be fed to them. If you find that your dog (like my sister’s beagle) has found his/her way into the kid’s top drawer of their dresser and helped themselves to a good portion of the Easter loot then here are some things to watch out for.
Signs of poisoning (from chocolate or other substances):
- Vomiting and Diarrhea (these two are usually the easiest to spot)
- Increased Thirst and Urination
- Slowed or Increased Heart Rate (this can be dependant on the stage of the poisoning)
- Hyperactivity and/or Restlessness
- Muscle Tremors and even Seizures
If your pet is showing these symptoms, and is not getting better then you should get in touch with your veterinarian. These are the people that know your dog’s medical problems, and will be able to best inform you on what to do.
Some things to think about in order to prevent this from happening:
- When hiding candy for the kid, make sure that it is hidden in an area that you dog is not going to have access to until the kids have found all of the goodies. Take a moment to look over the area and make sure that all of the candy and chocolate has been found.
- Inform everyone in or visiting your household that your pets do not get to eat candy or chocolate of any kind.
- Make sure that the “loot” bags are kept in locations that are not accessible by the family dog. (in my sister’s case she has them locked in the Beagle proof upper kitchen cabinet)
- These are just some things that may help over the Easter weekend, but ultimately you are the best judge of your dog and know their behaviors. This is the best defense for keeping your four legged family members safe, not only from the toxins that are found all around us, but from everything. Just ask yourself: if I leave that there will my dog eat it. If the answer is yes then move it, or take measures to keep your dog from getting around it.
Here is a toxicity level chart that I found on line. After looking at a number of other charts and information in a variety of locations on the web (All of which differ a little here and there. I think this is the easiest to understand).
Toxicity of Chocolate on Dogs
|Type||Description||Amount to Harm Dog|
|White chocolate||Not actually chocolate||Usually not harmful|
|Milk chocolate||In candy bars||1 ounce per pound of dog|
|Semi-sweet||Chocolate Chips, etc.||1 ounce per 3 pounds of dog|
|Dark chocolate||candy, chocolate chips, baking||1 ounce per 4 to 5 pounds of dog|
|Unsweetened||In squares||1 ounce per 9 pounds of dog|
|Cocoa||Powder||Less than 0.10 ounce per 5 pounds of dog|
|Cocoa bean mulch||Sold for gardens||2 ounce per 50 pounds of dog|
We hope that this helps, and that you and your furry friends have a great Easter weekend.
From The Management and Staff
Woofy World Kennels & Daycare