October 19, 2018

Keep Dogs Out of Chocolate Valentine’s Treats

If there’s a dog at your house, make sure chocolate Valentine’s candy stays out of his reach. Chocolate is toxic to dogs and too much can kill them.

Dog Food SafetyThe U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has compiled some information about chocolate and dogs. Here’s what you need to know to keep your dog healthy on holidays.

Theobromine, a compound in the caffeine family, is what makes chocolate toxic to dogs. The reaction your dog has to the toxin depends on his size, the amount he ate,  his sensitivity to theobromine and the type of chocolate.

For example, milk chocolate contains 44 mg of per oz.; semisweet chocolate chips contain 150 mg per oz. and baking chocolate contains 390 mg per oz. The minimum dose that is toxic for dogs is between 46 to 68 mg per pound. Fifty percent of dogs that consume 114 to 228 mg per pound die.

According to the FDA, to reach a toxic dose of theobromine, a Boston Terrier would have to eat 1 ounce per 3 pounds of body weight of semisweet chocolate bunny, 1 ounce per 1 pound of body weight of milk chocolate bunny, or 1 ounce per 9 pounds of body weight of baking chocolate bunny.

Symptoms of theobromine toxicity in a dog include vomiting, diarrhea, rapid heart rate, restlessness, hyperactivity, increased frequency of urination, seizures and muscle spasms. If you think your dog has eaten chocolate, call your vet.

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