We would almost always say that sharing our treats is a good thing. But when it comes to the furry friends in our families, it is important to keep chocolate, breath mints, and gum out of their reach.
As delicious as it is, chocolate is one of the top five leading causes of medical emergencies for dogs. That’s because chocolate contains theobromine. Humans metabolize theobromine easily and without any adverse effects. But dogs process it much more slowly, allowing it to build up in their bodies and cause severe symptoms. For a small dog, a bite or two of chocolate can produce severe symptoms, while it might take two times as much for larger dogs to become sick.
Unfortunately, chocolate is not the only treat that can be dangerous for dogs. Dogs can also get sick from eating breath mints or chewing gum, which frequently contain the sweetener xylitol. While xylitol is a perfectly harmless sugar substitute for humans, dogs metabolize it differently. It doesn’t take much chewing gum or mints for your dog to get into trouble.
If you even suspect that your dog has consumed either chocolate or chewing gum, call your vet immediately. Fast action is the best action. As a responsible pet owner, be conscious of the human treats that are in your home and how much access your pet has to them.