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What to do if your dog eats chocolate

Updated on March 15, 2009

Why do dogs love chocolates?

A lot of dog owners are not aware of the fact that dog and chocolates don’t go together well…that is if the chocolate is ingested by the dog. If you are one of these owners what would you do if you have unknowingly allowed to dog to lap the melted chocolate ice cream or allowed the dog to have a go at the left over Black Forest Cake? Dogs are much similar to humans in that both have the cravings for sweets. Because we love chocolates, our pets somehow have developed a taste for this sweet delicacy too. It would not be uncommon for dog owners to share with the pet whatever they are eating thus chocolate lovers have dogs that are introduced to chocolates.

Why is chocolate poisonous?

The hapless chocolate candy bar can kill the dog because it contains theobromine. This simple chemical compound can not be digested by the dog and once ingested would have a dreadful effect on the cardiovascular system and the nervous system of the dog.

The toxicity level of the chocolate

The body weight of the dog, the dog’s sensitivity and the concentration of the chocolate accounts for the toxicity effect. Bakers chocolate and unsweetened chocolate are purer chocolates meaning that they contain a higher concentration of the theobromine. This means that a 20 lbs. dog consuming a 5 ounce milk chocolate would merely have digestive problems as compared to a dog with the same body weight that can die because it has ingested a 5 ounce Bakers chocolate.


Dogs that have ingested small amount of chocolate would show signs of poisoning in a day or two. Diarrhea and vomiting are the usual signs. Immediate treatment is necessary to prevent dehydration. However, dogs that have consumed large amounts of chocolate would show poisoning signs in a matter of hours. Both cases would need medical attention but the latter is an urgent situation. Take your dog to a medical facility at once. This kind of poisoning if not attended to at once could result to the death of the dog. The vet would usually induce vomiting, administer activated charcoal and monitor the signs of toxicity. Chocolate poisoning has no antidote and prevention is certainly better than cure. Keep the chocolates in well covered containers. We love chocolates but for sure we love our dogs more!

Signs of chocolate poisoning

A dog that has ingested sufficient amount of chocolate would vomit and have diarrhea. As the theobromide affects the central nervous system the dog would show agitation, hyperactivity, muscle tremors and restlessness. Abnormal heart activity will also be noticed (slow or fast heart beat). The toxins in the chocolate acts a diuretic that make the dog urinate frequently.

Yellow labrador eating chocolate

Another chocolate eating dog

Dog being fed a chocolate treat


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    • profile image

      chuliosa 3 years ago

      Hi we are worrie we have a 2 month chihuahua and she eat chocolate but she look ok she is event playing how do i know if she is goin to be ok

    • profile image

      -- 5 years ago

      My dog chancea is probably, 30 or so pounds. He got ahold of 1 or 2 (mini) Reese's Peanut Butter cups. (The bite sized ones,Mini) they have a bit of chocolate in them. He is ok, right now. Acting normal! Will he be ok?

    • profile image

      christina 5 years ago

      I had left a pack of oreo's in my car i had a dumb moment my 7 year old ale pit-bull ate the whole pack and i am worried but him i do not have any money to pay for a vet so if anyone has a idea for a remedie i am open to them thanks from a concerned dog parent

    • profile image

      abby 5 years ago

      my dog is a puppy and he just ate a full bag of chocolate and my family is worried what do i do

    • profile image

      Scott 6 years ago

      My dog ate a chocolate canndy that fell on the floor yesterday. Today she had whate seemed to be a siezure. It lasted about ten minutes. She seems fine now.

    • profile image

      NaomiOcean 6 years ago

      My jack russell-cocker spaniel ate half a chocolate brownie that fell off my desk while I was out of my room help my neice. Will he be alright?

    • profile image

      Cheryl 6 years ago

      There is a great number to call. It does cost 65 dollars but the are the leading authority on knowing what to do. They can tell you right away if it is a toxic level. My dog ate 2 brownies of a certain brand and they calculate the amount of chocolate to his weight. To level of toxicity. Lifesaver and great peace of mind. 1-888-426-4435 ASPCA hotline

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      Kel 6 years ago

      Our 13 month old pure maltese has been a Hoover over Easter and licking up the droppings my 3 girls left when eating their eggs. I'm not sure how much he consumed and I was unaware he was doing it as we had so many family and friends over. This happened Sunday, he had diarrhea all Monday morning and still has today Tuesday. He's also been vomiting up small amounts here and there. He is very keen in his favourite dry dog biscuits and is drinking plenty of water. He's resting a lot and not doing too much physically :( Ive bathed him twice and he enjoyed them. I'm very worried as we have never seen him this unwell. As he is a small Maltese could the eating dilute the chocolate from his body???

    • profile image

      Sara 6 years ago

      If your dog ingested chocolate take them to the vet immediately. There is nothing better to do. If they aren't showing any signs of sickNess you need to watch them closely and if they start showing signs get them to a vet! Don't leave chocolate in any dog's reach!

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      Annie 6 years ago

      My 65lb lab ate an entire container(14oz) of chocolate covered almonds a little over 24 hours ago. She had diarrhea all night and seems very lethargic and sick. She is having trouble walking because it seems that her stomach is really bothering her. She did pass a large amount of the almonds but I am very worried. Should I tame her to the vet? The chocolate was milk chocolate, which I have heard is not as bad as dark chocolate, unsweetened or bakers chocolate. Thanks!

    • profile image

      falcon13 6 years ago

      our beagle maltese mix just ate three milk chocolate eggs

      will he die? we are watching him for a friend. he is 5

      we're hoping he wont poop all over everything our kids already do that

    • profile image

      Julie 6 years ago

      My pitbull puppy barely ate oreo cookies that my niece left out an I don't know what to do. Its early an he has shown no signs but im worried about what might happen.

    • profile image

      Anna 6 years ago

      My puppy licked a chocolate Bavarian will she be ok I hope so

    • cabmgmnt profile image

      Corey 6 years ago from Northfield, MA

      Thanks for sharing this. It is important that dog owners know that very small amounts of chocolate can make a dog sick.

    • profile image

      Tracey 6 years ago

      My little 9 week old toy poodle has eaten my galaxy she hasn't been sick but now she is scratchin at my bag and there is more chocolate in there what do i do if she isn't sick i don't want 2 choloholics in the house

    • profile image

      paige 6 years ago

      My dog has just eaten the rest of my melted chocolate ice cream with choc chunks in it whilst I was in the shower. Its a Ben and jerrys size tub and had about half left she's a staffy and quite big should I be worried? I have no money to take her to a vet

    • profile image

      Sue 6 years ago

      My dog ate 7 chocolate muffins yesterday

      She seems fine should I wait or call the vet...........

    • profile image

      Pat 6 years ago

      my jack russell cross cross stole about 6 Lindt choccies last night and is a little hyper today but that is all. I think he will be ok...

    • profile image

      Jason 6 years ago

      My Mini Pin just got into a valentine box and ate 8 pieces of chocolate. Should I be worried?

    • profile image

      Tracy 6 years ago

      My daughter left some chocolate in her room and my 16 lb pug got into it and ate a regular size Hershey bar and a regular size kit kat. I'm very worried.

    • profile image

      Vanessa 6 years ago

      My dog ate chocolate and is throwing up n pooping everywhere what should I do???

    • profile image

      YorkiePin mom 6 years ago

      Hi. My yorkie pin ate a little 2"x2" Ghirardelli dark chocolate brownie with little dark chocolate chunks. I was able to take 1/4 of it from her little mouth. She weighs less than 9 lbs. she is okay now. Should I make her vomit?

    • profile image

      Espy 6 years ago

      Sorry i forgot if your dog eats choc. contact me at don't email me between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm. (sorry its a long time but i have to go to tie kwon do) it is simular to karate

    • profile image

      Espy 6 years ago

      Ok, first of all im a dog freak and the videos are cruel and you should take them off!!!! second, if your dog eats choco. it might be fine or not, it depends on the breed. breeds like grayhounds and labs. will be fine if they eat about 7 ounses of choc.

      but if you have a breed like a dashund, and it eats more then 5 oz. YOU SHOULD TAKE IT TO A VET ASAP!!!!

    • profile image

      jkkk 6 years ago


    • profile image

      karina 6 years ago

      omg my chigaugua just ate i think like a small half of a choclate bar my friend left in the couch i was in the bathroom and when i came out she was eating it i tried to take it out of her but she bit me and almost attaked me im rlly scared she seems fine but im rlly scared shes onley 1 year ols help me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • profile image

      Alee 6 years ago

      okeii i think people are overeacting honestly my dog baerly wights around 60 pounds and she once ate a bag of 150 ounces of chocolate and she's fine she has eaten a lot of choucolate troughout her life and she is still alive (she's 7) and honestly i think that chocolate just gets her hipper it doesn't really get her sick

    • profile image

      Natalie 6 years ago

      My dog just ate an entire chocolate cake (in a 9x9 pan with frosting) and is showing no results. he is playing fetch right now and is not lethargic or anyhting. do dogs always get chocolate poisoning from eating it or just usually?

    • profile image

      Ada 6 years ago

      It doesn't mean that you should keep feeding your dog chocolate if he doesn't vomit or have diharrea. Later, it causes liver issues and blindness. There are many irresponsible people who should never have another life depending on them. Such as the first command, saying "touch wood!"...

    • profile image

      mini pinscher 6 years ago

      Another way to try and rid the chocolate out of a dog's system is to feed hem their favorite food. This only works on little dogs but if you over feed your little dog with something they really enjoy, it should dilute the chocolate in their system. In the case of a big dog, depending on how much chocolate it has eaten, it may just make them super hyper and then crash out. Regardless, chocolate is very deadly to dogs and one should always contact their vet's office to see if they need to do anything.

    • profile image

      CJ 6 years ago

      Hi, my 100 lb pit bull got ahold of a packet of dark chocolate hot cocoa and keeps throwing up. I have no money and the vets wont take him without it. Is there any home remedy that will help????? He is our baby and I dunno what we'd do without him. :(

    • profile image

      kassity 6 years ago

      Hi my a pomeranian (not a tea cup but still pretty small)and heats two.chocolate brownies they were small but I'm still worries he ate chocolate. Before he was younger hes (7) now if I notice the systoms I will take him 2 the vet.

      Have a blessed day


    • profile image

      sam 6 years ago

      my dog ate a bag of chocolate im not sure how much was left in the bag though so im worried i also don't know when he ate it hes a miniture schnauzer please help me know if my dog will be ok i understand that i didn't leave much to go on but i am very concerned for him.

    • profile image

      tip & charlie 6 years ago

      my two chocolate labs ate about 10 oz of truffles...the dboth average 60-65 lbs. what should i do? i gave them 1 slece of burnt toast already...pls. advice me

    • profile image

      Charlie 6 years ago

      Our family dog ate two chocolate balls that we had wrapped under our Christmas tree. I don't know if they were dark or milk chocolate but they seemed a little light (there were 6 chocolates in the box). Our dog only weighs 10 pounds so I don't know if he's gonna die from it or not. Please help

    • profile image

      Alice 6 years ago

      My puppy has just eaten a timeout bar and he looks ok what should I do please help

    • profile image

      Annie 6 years ago

      Hi. Im so worried about my dog who ate a few pieces of normal chocolate a few days ago, and this morning he doesn't seem so well. He doesn't have the energy to walk and he smells bad too. What is this? and what should i do? he is a small Bichon Frise and only 9 months old...

      PLEASE HELP!!!

    • profile image

      emma 6 years ago

      help i don't know what to do i was was tieding and mu chrussel found half a box of choclates and ate them they were matchmakers

    • profile image

      JayMariee 6 years ago

      Omg my 4 month old chihuahua just ate some chocolate im unsure of how much she ate I just really hope she's ok "/ I love you Minnie x3 Please be ok !

    • profile image

      nick 6 years ago

      If any1 has any info on what I should do can you email @

    • profile image

      nick 6 years ago

      Hi my dog was being very very nosey and had a rummage around under my bed and ate about 15 roses chocolates he keeps panting a lot I'm unsure what to do I love my dog I'd be heart broken if anything happened too him what shall I do?? Dunno if I should ring pdsa and get him checked out!!

    • profile image

      Sadgurl 6 years ago

      My Siberian husky puppie just ate three large devils food brownies with creAm cheese icing...HElP!

    • hanwillingham profile image

      hanwillingham 6 years ago

      Fascinating hub. THanks for sharing, jackinabox.

    • profile image

      ruby 6 years ago

      my poodle has ate some galaxy chocolate that was left on the counter, she has been sick a couple of times but she doesn't seem too harmed by it, i was just wondering whether she will be ok

    • profile image

      VeryWorriedLady 7 years ago

      Ok i have an older dog he is 10 y/o he is short but has the body of a Chow Chow. He is a pretty hefty dog. Well My daughter was eating chocolate icecream with peanutbutter cups in it and said she dropped some. She clamed it was a little smaller then a golf ball.... Coming from a 5 y/o who knows right. Well Wilson pry weighs about 60+ pounds. and im freaking out cuz i don't have the money right now to take him to a vet. Not for another week. WHAT SHOULD I DO? i heard that it also depends on how much the dog weighs and how much they ingest.... im just really worried that im gonna loose my favorite old man. someone please help me! e-mail me at THANK YOU!

    • profile image

      WorriedOwnerOf2Dogs 7 years ago

      PLEASE HELP!!!

      My 2 dogs ate my Wispa Easter Egg, please tell me if there gonna be ok!! PLEASE!!

    • profile image

      nikola 7 years ago

      its been like too month since my dog ate chocolate and NOTHING happened

    • profile image

      DogOwner 7 years ago

      What should I do?

      My dog has eaten Half of a choc ice that fell on the floor of my kitchen. What Should I do?

      Please help, My children and I are worried : (

    • profile image

      NIkola 7 years ago

      my dog ate ten small 1-2 cm length and 5 mm in width will she be ok

    • profile image

      urgentdogowner 7 years ago

      while reading about how great dogs are, my dog died from chocolate poisoning. thanks sarah. thanks a lot. your website was super helpful.


      sad previous dog owner

    • jackinabox profile image

      jackinabox 7 years ago

      If she is showing signs of food poisoning.Talk to your vet.

    • profile image

      MyDog'sMyLife 7 years ago

      Hey my dog just licked some melted chocolate ice cream out of a bowl I left sitting on the floor (because I'm a stupid and mean person. :[ -sniffle-)

      What should I do?!

      She's eaten chocolate things before and has been ok...but she's older now and I'm still worried. :[

    • profile image

      I love Dogs 7 years ago

      Maybe you should be more careful of what you leave out, since you know your dog has a penchant for eating what he or she shouldn't.

    • profile image

      crystal  7 years ago

      There have been dogs that have eaten huge chocolate cakes and had nothing but tummy aches. the severity of your dogs reaction will depend on your dogs size, the amount of chocolate it has eaten and whether the chocolate was milk or dark. Milk chocolate is diluted and usually brings about a less severe reaction where as dark chocolate or the all natural chocolate you find in health food stores will have the potential to kill.

    • profile image

      Harry 8 years ago

      hi, my dog has eaten about two easter eggs and after a few hours has shown no effect. she has also eaten 1 whole christmas cake, and lots of chocolate bars and she hasent done anything. (touch wood!)


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