We, humans, love eating chocolates. We love adding chocolate to our cakes, cookies, donuts, and waffles. However, you must have heard that chocolate isn’t a suitable treat for dogs.
Yes, this is right. Chocolates aren’t suitable for your dogs. If you’re probably reading this blog, you probably must be looking to answer your question for this big question My Dog Ate a Chocolate Chip Cookies – What Should I Do ? .
What if my dog ate a chocolate chip muffin or 20 chocolate chip cookies – Do I need to rush it to a hospital?
If yes, this is the right place for you to get your answer. In this article, we will be discussing a few topics, including:
- Is chocolate toxic for your dog?
- What are the symptoms of chocolate poisoning in dogs?
- What to do if your dog eats 20 chocolate chip cookies?
- Treatment for chocolate poisoning in dogs
Let’s discuss these topics one by one and determine what you should do if your dog eats chocolate or 20 chocolate chip cookies.
Table of Contents
Is chocolate toxic for your dog?
Your dog begs for handouts to savor what you’re eating. However, when it comes to sharing food with your furry friend, there is one food you must hold back, i.e., Chocolate. Your dog can get sick and even die due to chocolate poisoning.
Yes, chocolate is toxic for your dogs. Chocolate contains methylxanthines, such as theobromine and caffeine. Dogs can’t metabolize theobromine content effectively. It can affect your dog’s gut, kidneys, and central nervous system.
If your dog ate chocolate frosting or chocolate chip cookies, monitor your dog closely and call your vet if it shows any symptoms of chocolate poisoning. Here are a few types of chocolates listed as per theobromine content:
- Cocoa beans (most toxic)
- Cocoa powder
- Unsweetened baker’s chocolate
- Semi-sweet chocolate
- Dark chocolate
- Milk chocolate
Knowing how much chocolate your dog ate can help you, and your vet determines whether you have an emergency.
As per the article published on the American Kennel Club, "Your dog experience mild symptoms if it consumes 20 mg of methylxanthines per kilogram of body weight, cardiac symptoms occur around eating 40-50 mg/kg, and seizures happen at eating dosages greater than 60 mg/kg."
What are the clinical symptoms of chocolate poisoning in dogs?
Your dog will begin showing symptoms of chocolate poisoning, usually within 4 to 6 hours of consuming chocolate chip cookies. Some of the symptoms include:
- Increase in thirst
- Racing heart rate
- Excessive urination
In severe cases, your dog may experience seizures, tremors, and heart failure.
The severity of chocolate poisoning depends on the amount and type of chocolate your dog has ingested. The stimulant can stay up to 72 hours in your dog’s body. Early treatment will help your dog recover quicker and lower your medical treatment cost.
Chocolate is one of the common causes of dog poisoning. Chocolate poisoning is so common that the Merck Veterinary Manual offers a chocolate toxicity meter to determine if your dog has consumed chocolate in an amount that can cause toxicity.
If you believe your dog has eaten chocolate, call your vet immediately. You can also reach out to the ASPCA’s 24-hour poison hotline (888-426-4435) for advice.
This helpline receives approximately 27 calls per day involving chocolate poisoning in dogs. Your vet may recommend you monitor your canine for clinical chocolate poisoning symptoms depending on your dog’s weight and the amount and the type of chocolate consumed. Your vet may ask you to call back if the dog’s condition worsens.
Your vet may also suggest bringing your dog to the clinic to start the treatment.
What is the treatment for chocolate poisoning?
Treatment for chocolate poisoning depends on the type and amount of chocolate your dog consumes. Your vet may induce vomiting by giving a hydrogen peroxide dosage.
The vet might give your dog several doses of activated charcoal to flush out toxins from your dog’s body without getting absorbed into the bloodstream.
If treated early, your dog might get well only by inducing vomiting and administering activated charcoal. The vet can repeat activated charcoal treatment to reduce the continued resorption and recirculation of theobromine in your dog’s system.
In severe cases, your vet may provide supportive treatments, such as medications or intravenous fluid therapy to stabilize your dog’s condition and promote theobromine excretion.
Moreover, monitor your dog closely overnight for agitation, diarrhea, high blood pressure, vomiting, irregular heartbeat, and nervousness.
Depending on the type of chocolate, even a tiny amount of chocolate can be toxic for your dog. If your dog eats chocolate chip cookies and shows the signs of chocolate poisoning, such as diarrhea, vomiting, restlessness, and more, call your vet immediately.
Try inducing vomiting in your dog until your vet comes. And to avoid such situations in the future, keep chocolates and other foods that contain chocolate out of your dog’s reach.
Frequently Asked Question
FAQ 1: How much chocolate can kill your dog?
It depends on the chocolate type your dog consumes. It can take only 0.3 ounces of concentrated chocolate per pound of body weight to kill a dog. Your dog is at risk of showing clinical signs if it consumes over 0.5 ounces of milk chocolate per pound of its body weight.
Your dog can show signs of illness if it consumes 0.13 ounces of dark or semi-sweet chocolate per pound of its body weight. However, if your dog ingests baker’s chocolate, consider it a vet emergency, even in a small amount.
FAQ 2: How can you tell if your dog has chocolate poisoning?
Your dog is having chocolate poisoning if it shows any of these symptoms – diarrhea, vomiting, excessive urination, racing heart rate, panting, restlessness, and increased thirst. Your dog may also experience seizures, tremors, and heart failure in extreme cases.
FAQ 3: How long does chocolate can stay in your dog’s system?
The dogs reach peak serum levels of caffeine within 30-60 minutes after consuming chocolate. It takes 4.5 hours to eliminate half of the ingested dose. However, they don’t reach theobromine’s peak serum levels until after 10 hours and take 17.5 hours to eliminate half of it.
FAQ 4: How to prevent chocolate poisoning in dogs?
You can prevent chocolate poisoning in your dog by keeping chocolates and other foods that contain chocolates out of your dog’s reach.
FAQ 5: How to treat chocolate poisoning in dogs?
Your dog might throw up itself after eating chocolate. However, if it doesn’t, call for a vet and try to induce vomiting by giving them hydrogen peroxide. The suggested hydrogen peroxide dosage for a dog is one teaspoon per 5 pounds of the dog’s body weight by mouth.