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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Breeder,Behaviorist, formerVet Asst
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 18950
Experience:  Former vol Vet Assistant.Breeder 18+ years Dog trainer / behaviorist
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Dog ate chocolate about 3 hours ago

Customer Question

Dog ate chocolate about 3 hours ago
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 11 months 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. For speed sake, let me give you the write up I have for chocolate. You can reply with the breed and weight of your dog as well as what type of chocolate your dog consumed and if the dog is showing any symptoms.

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 11 months ago.

Just touching base with you. It has been almost 30 minutes since I responded and I haven't heard back from you. I'm on the east coast so it is quite late and I do need to get at least a few hours of sleep before morning. Hopefully the sites I set will help you determine if vet care is necessary or not. If your dog has continued vomiting, I'd definitely have your dog seen.