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Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 20380
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
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My 46 pound dog ate an unknown amount of leftover Halloween

Customer Question

My 46 pound dog ate an unknown amount of leftover Halloween candy (mixed milk chocolate like Milky Way and Three Muskateers) I honestly can't remember how much was in the bowl because I crated my dog and ran out the door suddenly to get to the emergency room (my Dad got very ill and my mom was alone). When I got home I forgot about the candy until I noticed the empty bowl on the floor about 4 hours later. My dog went out twice but I couldn't see anything in the yard that looked like he had vomited. He acts fine. I honestly don't even remember exactly how much was in the bowl when I left the house, but there is nothing left, not even the wrappers. I think it was less than 1/4 of a bag--maybe about 10 ounces. I have MS and I'm exhausted. I'm worried about loading me, my wheelchair, and my dog in the car at 12:30 in the morning, but I will if it's necessary. I have a little hydrogen peroxide left but didn't know if it was too late to try that.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome,

This is just a quick note to let you know that I am locked on to your question and am working on it now.

My name is***** and I am a small animal vet with many years experience and rest assured I will do my best to answer your question to your satisfaction today. You can expect a written reply sometime within the next fifteen minutes or so.

We also have the option to talk things over by telephone or via an internet service such as Skype. Please get back to me if this is more convenient for you. { There is a small extra charge for phone calls }


Dr Scott

Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 1 year ago.

Hello again and thanks for waiting.

I have worked out an answer for you ...

1. Well if four hours has passed then it is now too late to induce vomiting as this should be done within one our of ingestion for it to be effective. But on the other hand what is encouraging is that my past experience of chocolate toxicity is that if adverse symptoms were going to occur then they would have started to do so well within the four hour period so if he is acting fine at this point then the chances are this is not going to be so serious.

2. While chocolate can be toxic to dogs they have to eat quite a lot, probably very much more than your dog ate before you would see signs of toxicity.

Lets run through some numbers : The rule of thumb which I apply is that with milk chocolate mild signs of toxicity can occur when 0.7 ounces per pound of body weight is ingested. Severe signs occur when 2 ounces per pound of body weight is swallowed. If you estimate your dog's weight as being in the region of 46 lb then you can see that your dog would have to swallow around 32 ozs { Two pounds } of pure milk chocolate before any symptoms would even start to occur. In your case the candy bars just had chocolate coating so you can see why I am not too concerned. The wrappers are rarely a problem by the way, these will normally just pass along the dog's digestive tract without problem.

{ Most chocolate toxicity incidents involve very small dogs and dark chocolate which is much more toxic than milk chocolate }

I am telling you the following just for your information as your dog ate so little you need not do anything and need not be concerned.

The symptoms of chocolate poisoning would include vomiting and diarrhoea as well as frequent urination, and restlessness in the early stages. This can then progress to cardiac dysfunction, tremors and fits. Of course you should call your vet without delay if any symptoms appear.

Having said that most dogs with chocolate poisoning will recover within 24 to 48 hours, particularly if serious symptoms do not occur. There is no specific treatment for chocolate poisoning only symptomatic treatment.

All you need do in your case is just to keep an eye on your dog but from what you have told me so far the chances are he will be just fine ...

I hope I have covered your question fully enough but if you would like further clarification or to talk things over a bit more then I will be on-line for the next hour or so and I will be more than pleased to continue working with you.


Dr Scott

Please be kind enough to rate my service to you after we have concluded our dialogue, such feedback helps me maintain the quality of my answers.

Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 1 year ago.

Hello again,

I am just checking back in to see how Keeper is getting on after our recent dialogue concerning the Halloween candy ...

How are things going?


Dr Scott

Please be kind enough to rate my service to you { Using the site rating system }, such feedback really helps me maintain the quality of my answers.