Can I Give My Dog Chocolate?

Can I Give My Dog Chocolate?We’ve all heard that chocolate can be very harmful for dogs. This is a fact and most definitely not an urban legend. Be sure to get the full scoop here, especially if you are a pet pooch owning chocoholic!

It’s absolutely true that chocolate has the potential to be deadly for dogs. Sadly, many pets have lost their lives prematurely from eating this sweet brown delicacy. Make no mistake about it, this is one human food that should never be given to your best buddy with no exceptions.

Though it usually takes a fair amount of canine chocolate consumption for serious toxicity, do not feed any amount. Many recipes, such as brownies, contain this red flagged ingredient meaning you have to be on the lookout for your dog’s sake.

Can I Give My Dog Chocolate? Answer: No, never!

Not as a treat, not as a one-time reward, not even just a bite, never!

Pure chocolate, made from cacao beans, deserves its scary reputation when it comes to the safety of your precious pet. But any variety of chocolate can literally kill your dog if enough is eaten. Owners need to be fully informed about the toxic effects and how to react. Be prepared for any situation, especially if this sweet treat is often in your household. Accidents involving chocolate and dogs can and do happen!

Different Types of Chocolate

Chocolate comes in many forms with different levels of toxicity for dogs. Certainly any kind should be off limits to your furry friend, but pure cocoa and dark chocolate generally pose the most dangerous threat. It’s true that milk, while chocolate or even Nutella may not be as potent but that doesn’t mean it can’t harm your dog. Consider this when you think of sharing something seemingly harmless like chocolate ice cream.

Complications for Canines

The caffeine in chocolate can really send your dog’s system into a tailspin. This factor in itself could create some entirely avoidable health issues. What’s much worse is that consuming enough chocolate could very well be fatal due to a substance called Theobromine. Unfortunately, dogs cannot metabolize this cacao alkaloid nearly as well as humans can.

Very worrying effects relating to the circulatory and respiratory systems can occur, leading to all sorts of troubling complications, after a dog eats chocolate. Everything from seizures to an irregular heartbeat to internal bleeding can develop following canine chocolate consumption. The effects could range from upset stomach to death.

Terrible Theobromine Toxicity

If your dog has gotten their paws on some chocolate then you need to act fast. Do not wait for obvious early signs which can include erratic behavior, unbelievable thirst, bouts of diarrhea, unexplained bursts of energy, panting and even serious seizures. Hopefully your dog will vomit up the chocolate which will help to rid them of the toxicity to some degree. Providing hydrogen peroxide may be necessary to avoid the deadly effects.

It’s very important to immediately speak with a vet following a chocolate mishap as the situation can be quite serious and even fatal.

Get Veterinary Help ASAP

By now you know that canine consumption of straight chocolate, or brownies, is cause for serious concern. It is of the utmost importance that you get professional help as soon as possible. We cannot stress this enough! Your dog will have a much higher chance of recovery the sooner you act. While chocolate toxicity can last up to 72 hours, the early hours are the most critical for survival.

Conclusion on Chocolate

Never feed your dog, as reward or otherwise, any amount of chocolate. This is not a rumor and this delicious treat can certainly harm, if not kill, your precious pet. Theobromine, which is found in chocolate, cannot be properly metabolized by your pet pooch which means it is literally quite deadly. Consider all kinds of chocolate to be very dangerous for the family dog. Milk, dark, white or any variety should all be strictly off limits.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Crappola December, 2015

My friend’s dog ate a whole container of brownies and he was fine.


Ken January, 2015

It’s actually not the caffeine, but chocolate having effects similar to an overdose of caffeine. And its toxicity depends hugely on what kind of chocolate. For example, white chocolate barely counts as chocolate at all and could be eaten in huge amounts. Even a mid-sized dog would probably be fine after eating an entire bag of milk chocolate chocolate chips. It’s the harder stuff where the real concern kicks in, with semi-sweet, call the vet, ASAP. With anything higher than semi-sweet such as dark chocolate, straight cocoa, baker’s chocolate, etc. Even small amounts can be fatal.

So, should you feed your dog chocolate chip cookies with semi-sweet chocolate chips? Probably not, but neither is it likely to send them to doggie heaven. The overall level of chocolate is relatively low compared to the weight of the dog. But straight up chocolate is a huge no-no, and most especially the darker variants.


Rhonda November, 2014

Although the information above is good, it still does not really tell why to not give a dog chocolate. I have given my dog little bites of chocolate since he was a puppy. He is now 5 years old and he’s fine so what is the big deal?


Anna November, 2012

No! It is a dog killer. If your dog feels left out, give them a treat.


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