My Dog Licked Chocolate What Should I Do?

Reviewed By Julie •  Updated: 08/01/21 •  3 min read
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Chocolate is one of those flavors that’s almost universally liked by humans. It comes in various forms, from powders to bars, and can be used in a wide variety of recipes! Chocolate is a wonderful thing! But what happens if a dog licks chocolate?

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Has your dog licked some chocolate? Are you worried the chocolate will make your dog sick? If so, then you’ve come to the right place. We understand that it can be scary when your dog does something like this.

In this article, we’ll take a look at chocolate and whether or not it can make a dog sick. Let’s get started!

What is Chocolate?

Chocolate is a flavoring that’s derived from cocoa beans, which grow on trees! The beans are actually the seeds of the cacao tree, which tends to grow in warmer areas near the equator.

The chocolate beans are fermented and then dried, after which they’re shipped all around the world. Manufacturers then process the beans by cleaning them, then roasting and grinding them. The result is a liquid called chocolate liquor. The chocolate liquor is then pressed, rolled, and combined with other ingredients such as sugar, then heated and allowed to cool. The result is a sweet chocolate candy bar! Though chocolate does come in other forms, too.

Just as chocolate comes in other forms, it also comes in different varieties, including:

While humans can safely enjoy chocolate in moderation, what about dogs? Can chocolate make dogs sick?

Chocolate & Dogs

Unfortunately, chocolate is extremely toxic to dogs. This is because it contains an ingredient called theobromine, which dogs are unable to metabolize. Theobromine typically affects dogs’ central nervous system, heart, guts, and kidneys.

What’s more, the darker the chocolate, the more theobromine it contains. This means that dark chocolate has more theobromine than milk & white chocolates. Dark chocolate is much more dangerous for dogs; however, it’s essential to understand that any type of dark or milk chocolate can be toxic to dogs.

For this reason, your dog shouldn’t have any amount of chocolate. The more chocolate he eats, the more theobromine he ingests, too. Theobromine can be toxic in doses of 100-150 mg/kilo of body weight in dogs. This means that a 30 kg Labrador could suffer a life-threatening reaction from just 3000 mg of theobromine. This much theobromine can be found in just one 500 gram bar of dark chocolate.

It is possible for a dog to become very sick after licking chocolate. However, it does depend on the type of chocolate and the amount your dog licks. One lick may only cause a stomach upset, while many licks could become a life-threatening emergency.

So, if your dog licks chocolate, the best advice we can give is to call the vet right away. The vet will be able to provide you with the best information on what to do next, such as whether or not your fur baby needs to see the vet.

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Julie is a graduate of the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, where she studied Animal science. Though contrary to the opinion of her parents she was meant to study pharmacy, but she was in love with animals especially cats. Julie currently works in an animal research institute (NGO) in California and loves spending quality time with her little cat. She has the passion for making research about animals, how they survive, their way of life among others and publishes it. Julie is also happily married with two kids.

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