Easter is almost upon us (Good Friday is 7 April, Easter Sunday is 9 April, and Easter Monday is 10 April) and right now people are purchasing chocolate Easter eggs and Easter buns.
All good and well for the average human, but there’s an army of greedy dogs out there with hyper sensitive noses twitching for Easter treats.
Chocolate is toxic for dogs. Chocolate contains a class of chemicals known as methylxanthines. These chemicals are known for their effects on the heart and muscles. After a dog eats chocolate, their body cannot process these chemicals the same way our bodies can. This leads to increased sensitivity to the chemicals’ toxic effects.
The signs of chocolate toxicity can occur within one to two hours, or they may take several hours to develop. They can last anywhere from several hours to days.
Hospitalization and supportive care may be required depending on the severity of signs that your dog is experiencing.
Signs of chocolate toxicity in dogs may include:
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Panting or increased breathing rate
- Restless or anxious behaviour
- Increased thirst
- Increased urination
- Racing or increased heart rate
- Abnormal heart rhythm
- Muscle tremors
- Increased body temperature.
Advanced signs such as seizure, collapse, coma, or death.
Grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas are all part of a family of fruit called ‘Vitis vinifera’ that can cause gut and kidney problems in dogs. Dogs can become extremely ill, and sometimes die after eating very small amounts of dried fruits.
Poisonings tend to be most common around festive times, when the fruits are readily available in foods such as hot cross buns and Christmas cake.
The idea therefore is to ensure that your dog does not participate in an Easter egg hunt and that you keep Easter treats well and truly out of reach. If in doubt, call your Vet.
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