Tuesday, 27 October 2009

How to have a Happy Halloween and keep those pups safe and sound!


We posted a blog back in April, around Easter time, to remind all dog owners about the dangers of feeding chocolate to dogs. As it is coming up to Halloween, when sweets and chocolates are out and about for some pooches to get hold of, we thought we’d post a little refresher on how to prevent and deal with this very serious issue.

Too much chocolate might be unhealthy for us, for a dog it’s actually poisonous. Here are a few tips and tricks to remember:
  • Keep your chocolate treats out of reach of intrepid hounds
  • Don't let family and friends give them chocolatey treats
  • Distract them with special dog "choc" drops if it helps!
The toxin is a chemical called theobromine in chocolate and cocoa (including that cocoa mulch gardeners use; dogs love the smell but it is also harmful if eaten).

Humans can cope with it, but dogs can’t, and the darker the chocolate, the higher the concentration of theobromine. If you suspect your dog has eaten some chocolate and you observe any of the following symptoms, please take them to the vet straight away:

  • Vomiting (with blood)
  • Sore tummy
  • Excessive thirst
  • Excitability
  • Drooling
  • Slow heart rate
  • In the later stages, epileptic-type fits
Remember, it’s better to be safe than sorry! Early symptoms of theobromine poisoning can be treated, but it's possible that as little as a regular bar and a half of dark chocolate could be fatal to a small dog. Make sure you notify a vet if you have any concerns.

Around the holidays, it can be tougher to keep these things under control but also remember that raisins, grapes, onions and the sweetener xylitol are also on the do-not-feed list.

For more tips on Halloween safety beyond chocolate, please see the Dog Trust website. Hope everyone has a happy (and safe) Halloween!

By the way, if you’re interested in original post, feel free to check it out!



[Image property of user: klickthis on Flickr]
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