Easter eggs and chocolate bunnies, chickens and lambs... again, all those Easter treats. But keep them away from your dog and cat, because chocolate is really (life) threatening for them!

Cocoa contains theobromine, a substance which acts on the central nervous system and on the heart muscle and which cannot be processed by dogs and cats. Chocolate gives us a 'feel-good feeling', but your animal's body immediately goes wild from it.

Dark chocolate is the most dangerous

Whether an animal gets sick from chocolate depends on its weight and on the type and amount of chocolate that’s eaten. Dark chocolate is the most dangerous. The guideline is that 100 grams or more of dark chocolate for a medium-sized dog is enough to seriously consider chocolate poisoning. Milk chocolate contains less theobromine, white chocolate contains almost none.

Symptoms of chocolate poisoning

After 2-4 hours: agitation, nausea and vomiting, drinking and urinating a lot, diarrhea, increased heart rate, increased body temperature and accelerated breathing or shock.

Several hours later: situation worsens, cardiac arrhythmia, muscle rigidity, convulsions, seizures and coma.

After 18-24 hours: death may follow as a result of cardiac arrest.

Help! What should I do?

Has your dog or cat eaten chocolate unexpectedly? Don’t get the animal to vomit by giving salt to the back of its throat, as this can seriously damage its kidneys, among other things. Contact your veterinarian immediately for further advice.

Snack wisely and keep chocolate away from your pet. Prins wishes everyone a safe and happy Easter!

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Annerike from the CareTeam

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