Holiday Chocolate Toxicity in Dogs: Signs and What to Do
Worried about your dog getting to all the chocolate you'll be having during the holiday season? Every responsible dog owner knows that chocolate is bad for dogs, so it's essential to be prepared in case they eat it. This article will teach you about holiday chocolate toxicity in dogs and how to handle it.
Why Is Holiday Chocolate Toxic?
Contrary to popular belief, chocolate does not precisely act like an instant poison for dogs. Rather, it has something to do with their metabolism. Holiday chocolate contains something called theobromine. Dogs do not possess the ability to metabolize theobromine easily as humans do. As such, it accelerates their heart rate and nervous system to dangerous levels. The toxicity of holiday chocolate for dogs depends on different factors such as age, weight, breed, and others.
Signs and Symptoms
Your dog’s tolerance for holiday chocolate, theobromine, in particular, depends on many different factors. The most prominent factors are weight and age. Generally speaking, the heavier your dog is, the more theobromine it can ingest. However, that doesn’t mean you should be allowing your large dog to eat holiday chocolate. Furthermore, older dogs are at higher risk of severe complications from chocolate poisoning.
Chocolate poisoning in dogs happens over time, and it's essential to monitor them throughout this period. Vomiting and diarrhea are common symptoms, as they have ingested something toxic and need to get it out. More severe signs you need to look out for are an elevated heart rate and tremors. If these symptoms are left untreated, they could result in seizures and even death.
What to Do
If you know that your dog has eaten holiday chocolate, the first thing you should do is see how much chocolate they ate. Check the packaging and estimate how much they have consumed; this will help the vet treat your dog. Nevertheless, you need to call or visit the nearest veterinarian immediately.
In some cases, your vet may require you to bring your dog to them as they have ingested a dangerous amount of holiday chocolate. The vet will then try to induce vomiting if they have eaten the holiday chocolate recently. Your dog may require activated charcoal and IV fluid treatment if the case is particularly bad.
Train Your Dog to Avoid Holiday Chocolate at TK9
TK9 is a boarding, daycare, and training facility dedicated to caring for pets in the community. Our staff understands that the safest dog is a well-trained one. Whether you need a fantastic place for your pet to stay or prepare them to behave during the holidays, our facility can accommodate your needs. Need a safe & fun place for your pet to stay during the holidays? Book your pet's boarding appointment now, before we book up.