Easter is here and that means lots of chocolate lying around!

Chocolate contains theobromine, a compound that cannot easily be broken down by your pets body. It is toxic to dogs and cats and can cause death, so watch out for the following clinical signs:

• Vomiting and Diarrhoea (often within 2-4 hours of eating the chocolate
• Nervous system excitement, hyperactivity, shivers and seizures
• Increased temperature, blood pressure and heart rate

The severity of signs seen is dependant on the size of your pet and the amount and type of chocolate your pet has eaten. The darker the chocolate the more theobromine it contains and therefore the more toxic it is.

Cooking and dark chocolate are the worst type followed by milk and white chocolate. Usually the more a dog eats, the worse the prognosis becomes, but remember that even small amounts of chocolate can be fatal. If a dog eats a little bit every day, this can also cause problems, potentially leading to heart failure so keep chocolate away from them! If you want to spoil your dog this Easter, get them some Dog Safe treats. ‘Dog Chocolate’ is not chocolate but rather carob which does not contain theobromine and is therefore safe to be used as treats (in moderation!).

What to do if your dog eats chocolate:

  1. Take note of the time that your dog ate the chocolate.
  2. Take note of the type of chocolate eaten. If you have the chocolate wrapper, bring it to the vet with you and your pet.
  3. Call us for advice straight away (or the emergency vet if we are closed). Prompt action could save your pet’s life.

Keep all chocolate away from pets. We often see pets in the practice with chocolate toxicity after kids have left their half eaten Easter egg on the lounge room table. Keep your eggs out of snouts reach and enjoy your Easter.