For Dogs, "Death By Chocolate" Can Be a Real Thing

On Monday, it was National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day. So of course, I had to show off our family's (almost) shelter pet on Facebook. 

On Tuesday, it was apparently Take Your Dog To The Vet Because She Got into Chocolate Day. Dogs shouldn't eat chocolate. The American Kennel Club says, quite simply, that "chocolate is toxic to dogs and...could cause a serious medical emergency." Sadie B didn't just eat chocolate. Nope, she ate a bunch of cocoa nibs. This a basically chocolate in its most raw, most potent form. I love the flavor of cocoa nibs, but I'm going to have the jitters if I have more than a few. Sadie B had a full four-ounce bag!

 

With a few other "second opinions" from Dr. Google, we realized that we needed to call the vet. 

Right away! 

Symptoms of chocolate poisoning will appear 6-12 hours after the dog gets into the chocolate; and dealing with it sooner is going to be a lot better. Already, Sadie B seemed "drunk" with energy. Like a child on an extreme sugar high.  

With all that energy, Sadie B was out of control. 

Seriously ... Out. Of. Control. 

And this is where it gets even worse. Almost as soon as she got back from the vet, she took all that pent up chocolate energy and bolted out of the yard. She ran straight toward Dauphin Street during the busy afternoon commute. Miraculously, she crossed Dauphin safely!

At that point, we might not have found her again but for our Whistle pet tracker. It helped us find her via GPS and get her back in the car. After a restless evening at home, with several trips outside to ... um, clear her system, she finally settled down and is back to normal today. 

The lessons:

  • Don't let your dog have chocolate, especially the good chocolate.
  • If your dog does eat more than a bite or two of chocolate, call the vet.
  • Get a dog GPS, especially if your dog has a tendency to bolt on you. You won't regret it.

Sadie B looks to be no worse for wear, thanks in part to that trip to the vet (the vet thinks she'll be fine, but we're watching her closely). People joke about death by chocolate, but for a dog, it's a very real possibility. And we never thought that could also mean a hyperactive dog getting out and maybe being hit by a car. Fortunately, that never happened; but I can only assume it was a close call. Whew!

Mason

Mason

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