Never giving your dog chocolate is a great rule to keep in mind because chocolate can be life-threatening. If your dog is experiencing chocolate toxicity, this is considered to be a medical emergency, so you must take your dog to the vet immediately for treatment. It is important to get your dog treatment in a timely manner to try and avoid the most serious effects of this toxicity.
Understanding Why Chocolate is Poisonous to Dogs
Choclate contains stimulants that are similar to caffeine known as methylxanthines and it can be high in fat. Both of these can contribute to problems for your dog, so it is best to never allow him to have chocolate. The more chocolate that your dog ingests, the higher the chance that he will experience significant effects from the ingestion. Your dog’s weight and certain other factors play in to how much chocolate your dog has to consume to be at risk for serious complications.
Due to the potential severity of chocolate toxicity, always consult your vet if you suspect that your dog ate chocolate. Your dog can eat people foods, such as bananas or apples, but chocolate can cause a wide range of symptoms, up to and including death in some cases. There is also a chance that if your dog eats a lot of chocolate that is high in fat that he could experience pancreatitis, a condition that is potentially life-threatening for dogs.
Is Poisoning in Dogs Characterized by Trembling and Shaking?
If your dog starts to shake suddenly, it is important that you quickly assess the situation. Shaking commonly indicates that your dog is cold, or that he is anxious, excited or scared about something. Simply moving your dog to a warmer and calmer environment is adequate to calm the shaking. Now, if your dog does not respond to these measures, something more serious could be going on, such as chocolate toxicity, and this can cause symptoms including:
a) Tremors and shaking
b) Urination and excessive thirst
c) Increased blood pressure and heart rate
d) Sudden onset of hyperactivity
f) Abnormal heart rhythm
g) Diarrhea and vomiting
If your dog does not have chocolate toxicity, but is still shaking, you still need to have him evaluated by a vet. Things like pain and fever can present with some shaking in dogs. You need to know the source of each so that proper treatment can start and your dog can recover.
Chocolate toxicity can be incredibly serious for dogs, so taking the steps to prevent it from happening is critical. You must keep all chocolate out of reach from your dog and let all of the other people who live in your house know that your dog is never to receive chocolate. If you have small children, stress this because they may innocently give the dog some chocolate without understanding how significantly this can hurt him. If you think your doctor has consumed chocolate, immediately call your vet for help and advice.