Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Chocolate


Record numbers of dogs are being poisoned after being fed chocolate, grapes and raisins by their owners as treats, say vets. Vets have seen a surge of almost 50 per cent in the number of dogs falling ill after eating chocolate. Chocolate contains theobromine, a naturally occurring stimulant found in the cocoa bean, which affects the central nervous system and heart and can kill a dog. The danger depends on the dog's size and the type of chocolate. Darker and more expensive chocolate contains more theobromine. Humans, and cats, have the metabolism to cope with theobromine. Toxins in grapes, raisins or sultanas can cause renal failure in dogs. In some cases, small dogs have died after eating as few as four grapes. Vets believe many owners are unaware of the dangers and have fed their pets cake and biscuits containing chocolate or grapes as treats. In other cases the animals have helped themselves. There has also been a rise in the number of dogs eating painkillers such as ibuprofen, paracetamol and aspirin. These can sometimes be fatal.Vets believe the animals sometimes find the drugs lying around the house. In many cases, however, pets are given the pills by their owners when they are injured, as it is cheaper than going to a vet.

8 comments:

jmb said...

I never knew that chocolate was poisonous to dogs until a few years ago. I had a friend who many years ago always gave her dogs chocolate kisses and it never did them any harm fortunately.

rosiero said...

As a child, we always fed my dog chocolate buttons, but she never came to any harm and reached the age of 13 when she died. Snoopy also LOVES chocolate, but I only give him very miniscule quantities. He also LOVES grapes too. I cannot resist those big brown eyes staring me out, when I have grapes or chocolate in my hand. He is now nine years old and - so far - in good health. I have heard before of the fact that chocolate (and more recently) grapes are not good for dogs, but my own experience has shown them not to be a problem. Maybe the size of the dog has something to do with it?

Crystal Jigsaw said...

I never give chocolate to our dogs. I've always known how dangerous it is to them. Thanks for posting this, it's helpful to other owners.

CJ xx

Flowerpot said...

Well done ED - I think a lot of people dont know how dangerous chocolate etc are.

rosiero said...

I have just reread what I commented earlier and I did not mean it to sound as if I was disagreeing with you. I am nowadays aware that chocolate is not good for dogs, though in the past I was blissfully unaware and we fed it a lot to my dog when I was a child. Thankfully it came to no harm. Likewise my current dog. I give him the tiniest crumbs and so far he has not suffered, but I do know someone whose dog once got at the Christmas tree chocolate and had the most awful case of diarrhoea imaginable. It is good that you are highlighting the problem.

Mopsa said...

Trouble is, Eurowoof, that there just isn't enough info out there about these apparently benign treats. Grapes/raisins etc are such an unexpected "poison". And the manufacture of choc drops for dogs doesn't help - they may be harmless in themselves, but how many owners know (or more helpfully understand) the difference between these things and a pack of Minstrels? It's like giving "healthy" peanuts to kids with nut allergies because "the protein's good for you".

Winchester whisperer said...

One man's Belgian chocolate is another dog's poison

Eurodog said...

Thank you all for your comments and I agree with you, Mopsa.
WW, spot on.
Rosiero, you are free to disagree with me. I know a lot of dogs who eat grapes and chocolates but I just draw people's attention to certain facts. No offence taken.