How Much Chocolate Does It Take to Hurt a Dog? Inclusive Guide 2022

Is your dog a chocolate lover?

If so, then you’ve probably noticed that they seem to be more interested in treats than they are in their own food. Of course, excessiveness of everything is bad, so there are no problems when your dog eats chocolates, but it is imperative to know how much chocolate does it take to hurt a dog.

It depends on what type of chocolate is eaten and the size of your dog. Dark chocolate, unsweetened baking cocoa, or chocolate powder can be more dangerous than milk chocolate for dogs.

Here you get a detailed guide on how much chocolate it takes to hurt a dog and how to stop dogs from eating chocolates.

Why is Chocolate Toxic to Dogs?

Chocolate is toxic to dogs because it contains a chemical called theobromine, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea.

In addition, chocolate also contains caffeine that stimulates your dog’s heart rate and nervous system, causing restlessness or agitation in some cases. 

Some chocolates are safer for your dog than others, but it’s important not to give them any at all. Dog owners often wonder if they can feed their pets human food like pizza or brownies. While there are a few human foods that dogs can safely eat, chocolate is not one of them.

In fact, it’s considered to be toxic for your dog, and there are some signs and symptoms of this problem if the dog is suffering from chocolate poisoning.

How Much Chocolate Does It Take to Hurt a Dog?

It depends on how much the dog eats, but it might only take a small amount of chocolate to make your pet sick.

Small dogs can be more susceptible than larger breeds when it comes to eating large quantities of dark chocolates since they are stronger in flavor and smell.

There are no specific guidelines for how much chocolate does it take to hurt a dog. Sometimes your pet can be sick with eating only one or two pieces of dark chocolates, and sometimes they need to eat many more before symptoms appear.

When your dog eats even 0.3 ounces of dark chocolate per pound of body weight, they are at risk to develop poisoning. In addition, some sources suggest that the darker the chocolate is, the more dangerous it will be for your pet.

Always keep in mind these factors before you give any piece of chocolates to your dog. As it can’t upset their stomach, there are some signs and symptoms of this problem.

We hope that now you are well aware of how much chocolate can kill a dog?

Signs and Symptoms of Chocolate Poisoning in Dogs: 

symptoms of chocolate poisoning in dogs can vary depending on the amount eaten and type of chocolate. When a dog eats only small amounts of dark chocolate, they may experience:

  • Vomiting within several hours after ingestion
  • Diarrhea after 12 to 24 hours after ingestion

These symptoms may pass in a few hours and would not require any treatment.

However, if the dog eats large amounts of dark chocolate or even milk chocolate, they can experience severe symptoms that might require veterinary care:

  • Seizures can occur within 30 minutes after ingestion of toxic levels of chocolate
  • Rapid heart rate and body temperature
  • Restlessness and agitation

In some cases, a coma or death can occur if the chocolate is not treated. In this case, it’s essential to consult a veterinarian immediately and get proper treatment for your pet. If you’ve given your dog chocolate candy recently, look out for these signs of poisoning:

  • Excessive drooling
  • Pacing
  • Trembling or shaking
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea that contains blood or appears black. It is a sign the chocolate has damaged the lining of your dog’s stomach and intestines.

So, these are the vital signs and symptoms of chocolate poisoning in dogs. So, if your dog has eaten dark chocolates, make sure to contact a veterinarian immediately.

It has some dangerous side effects, too, like seizures, etc. which might need immediate medical attention; otherwise, it will cause death for the pet.

What Kinds of Chocolate That Can Kill a Dog?

Well, not all types of chocolate need to be equally dangerous for your dog.

Milk Chocolate

Milk chocolate contains lower levels of theobromine which makes it less dangerous than dark or baking chocolates. But still, this type can cause minor problems like vomiting and diarrhea in small amounts, but if eaten by large breed dogs, it can be fatal.

White Chocolate

It is considered the safest chocolate that your dog may ingest, and it will probably show any symptoms of poisoning if eaten in small amounts. So white chocolates are most preferable for dogs as part of their diet because it contains high levels of fat, making them really good for dogs.

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate contains the highest levels of caffeine than other types. Therefore, it can be hazardous if ingested by your dog because one ounce per pound bodyweight is enough to cause poisoning in your pet. So, this type should not feed at all, or if you do, then only sparingly.  Also, keep in mind that the darker the chocolate, the more dangerous it is for dogs.

Baking Chocolate

Chocolate liquor contains high levels of caffeine, and baking chocolate contains even higher amounts than dark or milk chocolates. So, this type can be really fatal if eaten by your dog because one ounce per pound bodyweight is enough to cause poisoning in your pet.

Sugar-free Chocolates

Most sugar-free chocolates contain xylitol which is dangerous for dogs because it can cause hypoglycemia, liver failure, and even death. So, make sure not to feed your dog with this type of chocolate if they have diabetes or any other disease in that case.

So, these are some of the chocolate types and their dangerous levels in dogs. If your dog has eaten any kind of chocolate mentioned above, immediately consult a veterinarian because it can be really harmful to them sometimes even fatal. 

On the other hand, thankfully, white chocolates, which contain high amounts of fat, are not that dangerous. However, you should still consult a veterinarian before feeding your dog because it can be fatal for dogs suffering from obesity or any other disease.

List of Different Types of Chocolates

Cocoa powder: 20-24g / kg body weight

Baking chocolate: 15 ounces per pound of the dog’s weight is enough to kill them. 

Milk Chocolate: 45mg/kg or about 0.45 ounces per pound of your dog’s body weight will cause symptoms of toxicity.

Semi-Sweet or Bittersweet Chocolate: 13 ounces per pound of the dog’s weight is enough to kill them. 

Dark Chocolate: The darker it gets, the more toxic it becomes for dogs so that ingestion can cause vomiting and diarrhea. However, if more significant amounts are ingested, then chances of death increase too because dark chocolate contains 0.45 ounces per pound of weight.

White chocolate: Contains high-fat levels, so ingestion will only cause diarrhea and vomiting in small amounts but if eaten by large breed dogs, it can be fatal too because one ounce per pound bodyweight is enough to poison them. 

Unsweetened Baking Chocolate: 50g/kg or about 0.50 ounces per pound of your dog’s body weight will cause symptoms of toxicity.

Chocolate Liquor: It contains high levels of caffeine, and ingestion can cause vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythm, or even death in large amounts because drinking one ounce per pound bodyweight is enough to poison them. 

Xylitol: This is another type of sugar that can be found in some chocolates, and it causes hypoglycemia, liver failure, or even death. So, make sure not to feed your dog with this type of chocolate if they have diabetes or any other disease because ingestion can cause seizures, vomiting, loss of coordination, or coma too.

So, these are some of the chocolate types and their dangerous levels in dogs. If your dog has eaten any kind of chocolate mentioned above, immediately consult a veterinarian because it can be really harmful to them sometimes even fatal. 

What to Do When Your Dog Eats Chocolate?

First of all, make sure that your dog has not eaten a lethal amount of chocolate. If you are aware of the type and quantity of chocolate, it will make things easier to decide whether emergency care is required or not.

If there is any chance that they have eaten many chocolates, then immediately take them to the veterinarian because ingestion can cause seizures, vomiting, loss of coordination, or coma.

Make sure to take the chocolate wrapper with you so that the veterinarian can help you better decide on treatment.

On the other hand, if your dog has only eaten a small number of chocolates, then give some hydrogen peroxide to them so that it can induce vomiting. Afterward, take them for medical care because chocolate poisoning is not easy to diagnose, and treatment may vary according to symptoms present in dogs which will be exhibited by time. 

Tips on Keeping Dogs Safe from Chocolate Toxicity

Make sure to keep chocolates out of reach from dogs because they can also cause toxicity in birds and other pets too.

Even if your dog has not eaten a lethal amount, then still take them to the veterinarian as soon as possible because timely treatment is required to recover animals who have ingested chocolate effectively.

Keep an eye on your dog’s behavior because vomiting, diarrhea, and hyperactivity after ingestion can be an indication of chocolate poisoning in dogs.

If you are not sure whether your dog has eaten any type of toxic food or chocolates, then make them vomit with the help of hydrogen peroxide. So, at least it will reduce their chances to get sick if nothing else. 

Conclusion

So, these are some of the chocolate types and their dangerous levels in dogs. So, if your dog has eaten any kind of chocolate mentioned above, immediately consult a veterinarian. In the end, we hope that you are well aware of how much chocolate does it take to hurt a dog.

FAQs

What Types of Chocolate Are Bad for Dogs?

Collate contains 0.45 ounces per pound of weight. White chocolate:  Contains high-fat levels, so ingestion will only cause diarrhea and vomiting in small amounts but. Conversely, eaten by large breed dogs, it can be fatal too because one ounce per pound bodyweight is enough to poison them.

Unsweetened baking chocolate: This contains high levels of fat and caffeine; ingestion can cause vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythm, or even death. 

Can a Little Bit of Chocolate Kill a Dog?

Yes, some chocolates are poisonous for dogs, even if they have ingested a small amount. So, make sure to take your dog to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Timely treatment is required for the effective recovery of animals who have ingested chocolate.

How Much Chocolate Can a Dog Eat Without It Hurting Them?

It depends on the type of chocolate, whether it contains high levels or low amounts of fat. So, if your dog has eaten a small amount, don’t worry much because even, they have not ingested lethal dose but still take them to the veterinarian as soon as possible.