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Dublin: 5 °C Monday 19 March, 2018

Here's why your dog shouldn't eat chocolate

Dogs Trust has released a warning to pet owners this Easter.

Image: Dogs Trust

A LOT OF people will be enjoying chocolate, eggs and otherwise, this weekend.

Ahead of the Easter festivities, Dogs Trust has warned people about the dangers of dogs eating chocolate, saying it can have “tragic consequences”.

Dogs Trust, Ireland’s largest dog welfare charity, said many dog owners are unaware of the dangers of this.

Renagh Kelly, a Veterinary Surgeon with Dogs Trust, said: “Apart from the risks of obesity and the obvious dangers of eating the foil wrapping, the biggest risk of eating human chocolate is poisoning, which requires urgent veterinary attention.

“Chocolate contains theobromine, which, although tolerated by humans, is extremely toxic to man’s best friend. The darker the chocolate, the greater the amount of theobromine.

Toxic doses vary according to the size of dog and cocoa solid content of the chocolate. As a rough guide, Dogs Trust estimates that 50g of plain chocolate could be enough to kill a small dog, such as a Yorkshire Terrier, while just 400g could be enough to kill an average size dog.

Here is some advice from Dogs Trust:

  • Never feed your dog chocolate intended for humans
  • Keep your chocolate in a safe place – this means hidden out of sight and unavailable to your dog
  • If your egg (or any chocolate) is missing and you suspect that your dog is the culprit, contact your vet straight away
  • Look out for any of the following symptoms: vomiting containing blood, a sore tummy, excessive thirst, excitability, drooling, rapid heart rate and, in severe cases, epileptic-type fits
  • If your dog is displaying any of these signs then take them to your vet immediately
  • There is no antidote for theobromine poisoning, with treatment being symptomatic – therefore the sooner treatment is implemented, the greater the chance of recovery

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