3511 Pacific Coast Highway, Suite A
Torrance, CA 90505
(310) 325-3000 phone
(310) 257-0900 fax

Animal Emergency Referral Center April 11, 2006


Animal Emergency Referral Center

Torrance, CA – Give chocolate to loved ones on Easter and you could end up poisoning them. That is, if the loved ones are your pets. The Animal Emergency Referral Center warns that small amounts of two potentially toxic ingredients in chocolate, theobromide and caffeine, can cause vomiting, restlessness, cardiac problems, and potentially even seizures. Larger doses can be fatal.

While most pet owners expect a dog to develop an upset stomach after eating a large amount of chocolate, few realize its toxic potential. The lethal dose of theobromide depends on the size of the dog and the type of chocolate. Ounce for ounce, baking chocolate has six to nine times as much of the substance as milk chocolate does.

While a very small amount of chocolate may not harm some dogs, it’s safest to avoid giving it to them at all. If an accident occurs, a veterinarian should be consulted immediately. Treatment may require inducing vomiting, stabilizing the animal’s heartbeat and respiration, controlling seizures and slowing the absorption of theobromide. In severe situations, the animal’s stomach may need to be pumped or other emergency measures taken. Other animals are at risk as well.

Animal Emergency Referral Center is a 24-hour emergency/referral hospital located in Torrance at 3511 Pacific Coast Highway, Suite A. In the event of an emergency, please contact us at (310) 325-3000.