You’ve heard it, I’ve heard it, we’ve all heard it: you’re not supposed to feed a dog chocolate. It’s one of those things that people say a lot, but that nobody ever questions. For me it’s a total conceptual mystery, like the Stock Exchange, Scientology and why people find Adam Sandler movies funny. Human chocolate is apparently highly toxic to doggy stomachs, but I’ve always been far too scared to test out this often-discussed theory. I might occasionally give a dog a sneaky piece of chocolate when they give me the sad-puppy-eyes treatment, but I’d never feed them a whole bar.
The Easter and Christmas seasons are always extra stressful for devoted dog owners. With so much chocolate lining the cupboards and counter tops, you have to extra careful to make sure your cute canine companion doesn’t overdose on a Toblerone or Mars bar. Personally, I’ve always been terrified of having a dead dog on my sticky, chocolate-covered hands all because I couldn’t hide my Easter eggs properly.
So what’s the root of the problem? Why can’t a canine enjoy a bit of candy? Let’s get scientific for a moment. Normal chocolate contains a stimulant called “theobromine”, which is a bitter alkaloid that comes from the cacao plant. Although it’s completely harmless to us lucky humans, for our puppy pals it can be fatal – affecting not just the central nervous system, but also the heart. Maybe now people will take the advice of dog experts a bit more seriously.
So what actually happens when you feed a dog a bar of chocolate? Well a vet has been kind enough to show us, with the help of a few poorly pups who will likely never touch the sweet stuff for the rest of their days.
This guy got more than he bargained for when he decided to sneak some of the brown stuff
The worst part of this is that you can still see the chocolate buttons… Grim
These harrowing yet informative images were shared online by Drumahoe Vetinary Clinic in Derry, Northern Ireland, along with the festive warning:
“Not for the faint hearted but this is reality. Please think twice when you feed your dog chocolate! It is very poisonous. As Easter approaches make sure to keep all chocolate eggs away from your pets.”
There’s nothing in this world that’s harder to ignore than a poor pooch who wants fed. I’ve been sat at a dinner table, lost in the beautiful eyes of a chocolate (pun unintended) Labrador, all because the little guy couldn’t resist begging for that last slice of gateaux. While it might be tempting to give in to your pets longing looks and wistful gazes, I must insist you exercise caution. It’s fine for you to slip a few slices of roast beef onto the floor, but keep the chocolate out of licking reach.
The last thing you want this Easter is a trip to the vet because your furry friends has devoured the lion’s share of a Snickers bar. Trust me, both your dog and your carpet cleaner will not thank you for making that basic mistake…