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Dublin: 4°C Friday 5 March 2021

Please don't feed your dog Easter eggs, says Dogs Trust

Dark chocolate is especially toxic for dogs, so keep it in a place where they can’t sniff it out.

Image: Fran Veale/Dogs Trust

PEOPLE ARE BEING asked not to feed their dogs Easter eggs, or any other chocolate, ahead of the Easter holiday.

Dogs Trust Ireland has asked dog owners to be vigilant and keep chocolate out of reach of their dogs, as it can be extremely toxic and there is no cure for it.

“If your egg, or any chocolate, is missing and you suspect that your dog is the culprit, contact your vet straight away.

Given dogs’ keen sense of smell, it is best to keep chocolate out of sight and out of reach from your dog.

Chocolate can contain theobromine, which is extremely toxic to dogs. The darker the chocolate, the greater the amount of theobromine. Toxic doses vary according to the size of dog and cocoa content of the chocolate.

There is chocolate that can be especially bought for dogs from pet stores, if they are open in your area.

“If you suspect your dog has eaten chocolate,” says Dogs Trust vet Desré Daly, “please contact your vet for advice immediately. Chocolate poisoning can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, excessive thirst, excitability, drooling, seizures and potentially kidney and heart failure.

It is helpful if you can tell your vet how much chocolate, and the type of chocolate, you think your dog may have ingested. If you have any packaging, take it with you to the vets.

“Unfortunately, there is no antidote for theobromine poisoning, therefore, the sooner veterinary treatment is implemented, the greater the dog’s chances of recovery.”

Dogs Trust has also recommended explaining to children that it’s not safe to share their Easter eggs with their pet dog, and to give them doggy-friendly treats instead.

The animal charity also recommends that dog owners always have their local vet’s emergency number saved in their phone, just in case.

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