A Veterinarian in Phoenix, AZ Answers Questions About Chocolate Toxicity in PetsJanuary 20, 2017 2:57 am Leave your thoughts
Pets can be very curious, especially when it comes to food. They may not know what something is or how it tastes, but this still doesn’t stop them from giving it a try. Most pets have no idea the harm that can come their way when they get a hold of certain foods, so they don’t know that they should steer clear. Because some foods are highly toxic to pets, things may not end well if your animal consumes them.
One of the most dangerous food items to pets is chocolate. It is easy to let your pet do what they want if you don’t know what will hurt them and how, but because chocolate causes devastating effects, every pet owner should know why it is toxic and what exactly can happen should their pet consume it.
Why is chocolate considered toxic?
When comparing humans to animals, the first thing people will see is that the human body is not designed the same. This plays a huge role in how the body responds to various things, including foods, and how it functions when introduced to these foods. Simply put, animals cannot consume various foods, including chocolate, because of the way their bodies are built.
This sweet treat contains an ingredient known as theobromine. The way an animal’s body and a human’s body respond to theobromine is very different. The human body can metabolize this ingredient with no problem, but for dogs, for example, the process can take much longer. As time goes on and the substance remains in your dog’s body, the theobromine increases to a toxic level and negatively affects your pet.
What will happen to my pet if he or she consumes chocolate?
The effect chocolate has on your pet will vary based on the type of chocolate, the amount consumed and the size of the animal. When even a small amount is consumed, your pet may have a stomachache, diarrhea and vomiting, but this is not as bad as it can get. Your pet could also experience seizures, internal bleeding, heart attack and even death if toxicity levels are high enough.
It is best that people protect their pets, because they do not know any better and may not stop themselves when the opportunity to eat chocolate arises. Just to be on the safe side, pet owners should keep chocolate and many other foods that are toxic to animals out of reach. Although cats tend to avoid chocolate, this doesn’t mean they won’t attempt to eat it if it is easily accessible.
It can be scary to think about what can happen to your pet if they somehow get a hold of chocolate. As a pet owner, it is up to you to keep your animal safe, even if it is from food you wouldn’t normally associate with danger. Because there are various negative effects that can result, should your pet find his or her way to a nice piece of chocolate, do not wait to head to a veterinarian.
Do you need a veterinarian in Phoenix, AZ to examine your pet? Call today to schedule an appointment with the experts at Christown Animal Hospital.
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