Unfortunately, like having a child owning a pet doesn’t come with an instruction manual. So, you take home this adorable animal thinking it will all be fun and games, when in reality its often sleepless nights, lots of cleaning up wee's and poo's and many shredded shoes or even furniture. The other thing that goes wrong often is that owners make the assumption that their pet can simply eat what we do. This is unfortunately and often dangerously incorrect.
We love our dogs, it's only natural that we want to share what we are having with them, but it is a serious part of responsible pet ownership that we inform ourselves on what our pets can and cannot eat.
Every year around special events you may notice timely stories about what dogs have eaten that they shouldn’t have and at least one is always because the owners simply didn’t know (or the pooch is one sneaky critter)
I could talk about thisall day –can you tell?
BUT There is one food, which dogslove (and frankly we love too) but which they simply cannot eat and that is chocolate.
Now you might be scratching your head thinking, yeah but my dog had chocolate the other day and was fine and that could be entirely possible. I attribute it to something like alcohol. Though we love it, alcohol is poisonous to us. Sure, we can drink it and be fine, or maybe not so fine the day after, but if we drink enough of it, it can make usverysick and evenkill us. Chocolate is pretty much the same for our dogs.
But what is it that makes them sick? It’s two things actually, theobromine and caffeine, which are very similar in terms of their chemical structure and if consumed in high enough quantities can actually kill your dog. Brutal I know. The even scarier bit is how little chocolate can actually have that effect. Bearing in mind that each chocolate and the way each dog metabolises food is different, studies have shown that it takes only around 0.3 to 2 ounces per pound of weight for chocolate to kill a dog. You can even google some dog toxicity calculators online.
Lets get some dot points down:
If your dog gets in to a chocolate take them immediately to the nearest vet. If you catch it early enough, they will induce vomiting to try and get it out of their system before being digested. If you leave it too late things can become quite dire as there is no antidote for chocolate poisoning. I wouldn’t suggest trying home remedies even though there are a few on google – I would just get in the car and head right to the local vet.
Our Tip: Unless something is specifically made for dogs, do yourself a favour and always check that it is safe to give them. The vet bill and the possible loss of your best friend isnever worth the gamble.
Has your dog gotten into your chocolate stash? Share your story below to help other fellow pet owners.