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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16296
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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Dr. Dan - my 18 pound dog ate approximately 3 oz of wilton's

Customer Question

Hi dr. Dan - my 18 pound dog ate approximately 3 oz of wilton's dark cocoa. Do you think he will be ok?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I am sorry that you have been waiting for a response, but your requested expert isn't online.
If your 18 pound pup ate 3 ounces of dark chocolate that is a toxic amount.
At 18 pounds he would need to eat 1.18 ounces of dark chocolate to see symptoms of drooling, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea and 2.35 ounces of dark chocolate to see hyperexcitability and an elevated heart rate.
At higher amounts we can see muscle tremors and possible seizures.
If it has been less than 2 hours since he ingested the chocolate and it is more then it is well worth inducing vomiting.
You can give him 1 & 1/2 tablespoons of 3% hydrogen peroxide soaked up with bread chunks or a small amount of food, or mixed with a little ice cream.
Then take him outside and run him around to get the peroxide bubbling so he vomits.
If no vomiting in 10 minutes repeat the peroxide dose once.
If he vomits and seems to clear his stomach and be done I would check to see if most or all of the chocolate is present.
If it has already been 3 hours it is likely the chocolate is out of his stomach and it is probably too late to induce vomiting. At that point you cannot change things much at home, all you can do is watch him for further symptoms now.
I would encourage you to get him to drink as much as possible and to get him out to urinate frequently. Chocolate toxins are metabolized out through the kidneys and can be reabsorbed from the bladder so we don't want them to sit in her bladder for long.
In most cases mild chocolate toxicity is out of their system in 24 to 48 hours. We generally begin to see symptoms, if they eat a toxic amount, within 4 to 6 hours.
If he seems at all nauseous it may help to with-hold food for the next 12 hours to stop intestinal spasms.
To try and settle his stomach you can give either:
1) Pepcid ac (famotidine) at a dose of 1/2 of a 10mg tablet for a pup his size every 12 hours
2) Prilosec (omeprazole) at a dose of 1/2 of a 10mg tablet for a pup his size every 24 hours
These are acid reducers and should help him feel less nauseous. They are quite safe and can be used for several days if needed.
Then after his 12 hours food fast to decrease the symptoms of stomach upset you can feed him a bland diet for the next couple of days. A homemade bland diet is a mix of 1/3 boiled, minced, white skinless chicken or lean boiled hamburger and 2/3 boiled, white rice mixed with some low salt chicken broth to make it easy to lap up and swallow. Feed small meals frequently.
If you do notice a very rapid heart rate (more than 160 to 180 beats per minute in a small dog) repetitive tremors, or seizures then he should be seen by a veterinarian on an emergency basis for treatment. They can use injectable medications to control his heart rate and stop the seizures until the toxic levels fall.
Best of luck with your fellow let me know if you have any further questions.