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What Happens If a Dog Eats Chocolate & What to Do

Alessio enjoys writing tips in order to help people enjoy the best times with their beloved pets.

Dogs are one of the most common pets in people's homes. They are generally lovely, playful and they are very loyal to people who take care of them (in fact they are commonly described as the 'man's best friends'). Despite a dog can enrich the life of someone who chooses to adopt it, taking care of it is a fixed commitment not necessarily within everyone's reach. It is very important to carefully evaluate every aspect involved in adopting a dog, instead of rushing to get one just because of a personal desire without thinking twice about the commitment required. A dog needs especially time, veterinary healthcare, and, of course, food.

A funny dog-shaped cake

A funny dog-shaped cake

Be Careful What You Feed Your Dog

When someone has a dog, they have to be especially careful what they feed it: in fact, some people tend to take for granted that a dog needs much time and veterinary healthcare whenever required, still, they may underestimate the level of attention they have to pay when it comes to feeding their beloved dog. In the end, shelves of supermarkets are full of food made specifically for dogs, so many people tend to give it granted they will have always something safe to feed their pet with. Things change when they decide to feed their dog with other food: here much attention is required, as dogs cannot eat the same food as humans. For example, the funny dog-shaped cake shown in the previous picture would be poisonous for the best man's friend: this is because of the chocolate filling inside. But what exactly happens if a dog eats chocolate and what can be done if that happens?

Chocolate Is Poisonous to Dogs

Everyone should pay attention to never letting their dog eat chocolate. This food is certainly a little gluttony that many people enjoy, still, it is not the same for dogs. Chocolate is poisonous to our beloved pets because they don't have the enzymes needed to metabolize cocoa. This leads to a fact: dark chocolate may harm a dog more than milk chocolate, still, a dog should never try this food in any case. While these pets generally hate the bitter taste of cocoa (so the risk they are going to taste dark chocolate is not much high), things change with milk chocolate, as it is sweeter and dogs may appreciate their taste.

These delicious chocolate brownies are perfect for people, while a dog should surely never eat them.

These delicious chocolate brownies are perfect for people, while a dog should surely never eat them.

Consequences for a Dog That Takes Cocoa

It is clear that a dog should never eat chocolate under any circumstances. Although attention must always be maximum, an accident can happen, so it is important to understand the consequences of a dog giving a bite to that chocolate donut bought for breakfast and left unattended. Luckily, chocolate poisoning for a dog does not always prove fatal: in the case of small cocoa intakes, our pet will face digestive difficulties which can last up to two days. Things change when a dog eats more quantities of chocolate: in this case symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea can occur: in cases of excessive intake, cocoa can be lethal for a dog.

What to Do if a Dog Eats Chocolate?

It is clear that chocolate is poisonous to dogs, but it is not always lethal. This must not justify any deviation from the rule: chocolate must never be given to a dog, not even behind the most pleading eyes in the world. Even if the lethality threshold is not reached, cocoa can still cause unpleasant symptoms to our four-legged friend that's the reason why the first thing to do if a dog eats chocolate is to bring them to the vet. While it may not always be pleasant for a dog to be taken to the vet, extra attention is always better than risking more serious problems later.
Prevention is always better than cure: for this reason, it is important to make sure the dog does not secretly eat foods containing cocoa. Not leaving any sweets containing chocolate within bite reach is the first thing to do to avoid accidents.

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This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.

© 2022 Alessio Ganci

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