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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Breeder,Behaviorist, formerVet Asst
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 19467
Experience:  Former vol Vet Assistant.Breeder 18+ years Dog trainer / behaviorist
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My beagle (about 30 pounds) ate about 2 ounces (60ish grams)

Customer Question

Customer: My beagle (about 30 pounds) ate about 2 ounces (60ish grams) of dove dark chocolate - from what I've been able to find online, 1.3 ounces of dove dark chocolate has 178 theobromine. Is it fine to just watch him for any hyperactivity/tremors/irregular heart rate or do we need to take him to the vet?
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: Right now, he isn't showing any symptoms of chocolate toxicity - he's sleeping on the couch beside me. He's about 3 years old.
JA: OK got it. Last thing — JustAnswer charges a fee (generally around $19) to post your type of question to Dog Experts (you only pay if satisfied). There are a couple customers ahead of you. Are you willing to wait a bit?
Customer: yes
JA: OK. Now I'm going to take you to a page to place a secure deposit with JustAnswer. Don't worry, this chat is saved. After that, we will finish helping you.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.

Hi JaCustomer,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

in order to get you a quick answer since time can be an issue, I'm going to send you the prewritten instructions I have to give clients concerning chocolate ingestion. Then I'll address the amount directly in the next post.

First thing is to not panic. Different kinds of chocolates have different toxicity amounts. Chocolate contains theobromine, which is what causes the toxic response. If the dog ate the chocolate recently (within last 2 hours), you can induce vomiting with 1 teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide 3% per 10 pounds, which can be repeated 10 minutes later if it does not induce vomiting. Items such as cookies and cakes will have less actual chocolate in them, so you will have to make an estimate in the amount of chocolate that may have been in the amount of cake, brownie, or cookie your dog may have ingested .

Signs of theobromine toxic poisoning should appear within 1 to 4 hours of ingesting the chocolate. These include vomiting, increased thirst, diarrhea, weakness, difficulty keeping balance, hyperexcitability, muscle spasm, seizures, coma and potentially death from an abnormal heart rhythm.

The following websites will give you’re the approximate amounts of chocolate that you will need to worry about based on the size of your dog and the type of chocolate. Consult this page to determine if a toxic amount has been ingested.

http://www.vspn.org/Library/misc/VSPN_M01325.htm

http://www.beaglesunlimited.com/beaglehealth_chocolatetoxicosis.htm

There is also an interactive chart available as well here:

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2007/10/pets/chocolate-chart-interactive

If your dog has ingested enough to be toxic according to the chart, you need to have your dog taken to the vet for supportive care. Your vet can administer charcoal to absorb the toxins and let it pass through your dog’s system with less absorption and monitor your dog’s vital signs until the danger has passed.

You also should be aware of the fact that the high fat content in chocolate can also trigger pancreatitis in some dogs and you may wish to take your dog into the vet to avoid this condition developing and definitely keep an eye out for symptoms of this.. You can read about pancreatitis here:

http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=2+1580&aid=335

http://www.petplace.com/dogs/acute-pancreatitis-in-dogs/page1.aspx

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.

A 30 pound dog should be able to ingest about 2 ounces of dark chocolate and likely only experience vomiting and diarrhea. If you can induce vomiting that will lessen the amount ingested and reduce the chance of serious symptoms developing.

I hope this information is helpful to you. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have . If you do find this helpful, please take this opportunity to rate my answer so I am compensated for my time.

If you have questions in the future that you wish me to answer, you may click here and bookmark the page or make it a favorite. It is best to put my name "JANE" in the question as well.

Since there have been recalls on certain foods, please check the following site to be sure the food your animals eat is not affected. If it is affected, contact your vet as soon as possible. Have your dog seen if they have any symptoms.

http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/SafetyHealth/RecallsWithdrawals/

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
How long after he ate the chocolate would symptoms develop? (When should we stop worrying/know he's going to be fine?) And at what point/what symptoms should we go to a vet?
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.

If you scroll up, I also supplied that information in the previoius post concerning general information. Normally symptoms start to appear between 1-4 hours after ingestion. If you don't see those symptoms within that period of time, then it is likely he is fine from the theobromine. The fat content leading to pancreatitis would normally develop in the next 24 hours. So monitor him for the next day or so. If vomits more than just a couple of time then I might have him seen for pancreatitis. Just in case you didn't read the first post I'll copy it here.

Hi JaCustomer,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

in order to get you a quick answer since time can be an issue, I'm going to send you the prewritten instructions I have to give clients concerning chocolate ingestion. Then I'll address the amount directly in the next post.

First thing is to not panic. Different kinds of chocolates have different toxicity amounts. Chocolate contains theobromine, which is what causes the toxic response. If the dog ate the chocolate recently (within last 2 hours), you can induce vomiting with 1 teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide 3% per 10 pounds, which can be repeated 10 minutes later if it does not induce vomiting. Items such as cookies and cakes will have less actual chocolate in them, so you will have to make an estimate in the amount of chocolate that may have been in the amount of cake, brownie, or cookie your dog may have ingested .

Signs of theobromine toxic poisoning should appear within 1 to 4 hours of ingesting the chocolate. These include vomiting, increased thirst, diarrhea, weakness, difficulty keeping balance, hyperexcitability, muscle spasm, seizures, coma and potentially death from an abnormal heart rhythm.

The following websites will give you’re the approximate amounts of chocolate that you will need to worry about based on the size of your dog and the type of chocolate. Consult this page to determine if a toxic amount has been ingested.

http://www.vspn.org/Library/misc/VSPN_M01325.htm

http://www.beaglesunlimited.com/beaglehealth_chocolatetoxicosis.htm

There is also an interactive chart available as well here:

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2007/10/pets/chocolate-chart-interactive

If your dog has ingested enough to be toxic according to the chart, you need to have your dog taken to the vet for supportive care. Your vet can administer charcoal to absorb the toxins and let it pass through your dog’s system with less absorption and monitor your dog’s vital signs until the danger has passed.

You also should be aware of the fact that the high fat content in chocolate can also trigger pancreatitis in some dogs and you may wish to take your dog into the vet to avoid this condition developing and definitely keep an eye out for symptoms of this.. You can read about pancreatitis here:

http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=2+1580&aid=335

http://www.petplace.com/dogs/acute-pancreatitis-in-dogs/page1.aspx

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Jane Lefler