Our team continues to be here for you and your cherished pets. We are OPEN and are now able to provide a wide range of services. To learn more about the changes we have implemented in response to COVID-19 and what to expect during your next visit, click here.

Is It Safe for My Dog to Eat Chocolate?

It is a complicated question! Is it safe for my 60lb yellow Lab to eat two squares of Baker’s chocolate? NO! That could be life-threatening. Is it safe for my 15 lb Shih Tzu to eat two squares of my milk chocolate coated candy bar? Not cool! That was MY candy bar! But not life-threatening.

Chocolate can be dangerous for dogs. The amount of toxicity chocolate causes depends on the level of cocoa in the chocolate and the size of the dog that has eaten the chocolate. Theobromine and caffeine are the chemicals in the cocoa that can be toxic to dogs. But a lot of the focus is on the theobromine content.

Theobromine affects the nervous, cardiovascular and respiratory systems of people and dogs. Toxicity occurs in dogs because it circulates in the bloodstream so much longer before it can be broken down by the liver. The half-life of theobromine (the amount of time it takes for half of the theobromine to be metabolized by the liver) is only 2-3 hours in people. The half-life of theobromine in dogs is 18 hours. If a dog consumes too much chocolate, an owner may notice signs such as hyperexcitability, excessive panting, difficulty walking, muscle twitching, vomiting and even seizures. Symptoms such as high heart rates and abnormal heart rhythms are not as obvious. Severe symptoms include seizures and death.

The more cocoa there is in a chocolate product, the more dangerous it is. Cocoa powder and Baker’s chocolate have much higher levels of cocoa than milk chocolate. Chocolate syrups and flavourings have less. Candies and bars coated in chocolate are also lower in cocoa than a solid bar. White chocolate is basically cocoa butter and sugar and contains very little theobromine.

If you have noticed that your dog has eaten a product containing chocolate, it is ALWAYS a good idea to call a veterinary professional (like Centennial Animal Hospital) to check if the amount of chocolate consumed is toxic or not. You can reach us at 204-269-8162.

Written by: Tara, RVT

Resources
(1) Fiona Finlay, and Simon Guiton, Journal List, BMJ, v.331(7517); 2005 Sep 17

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How to help injured and orphaned wild animals

Below are a few suggestions should you come across injured or orphaned wildlife.  First, you need to determine if the wild animal is indeed injured or abandoned without putting yourself in harm’s way. Try not to have too much contact with the animal or to disturb the surroundings. If you are unsure, it is best that you leave it be and call a wildlife specialist to notify them about the animal and its location. Certain animals like rabbits and deer often leave their young alone for long periods throughout the day. If it appears healthy and well, do not disturb the animal. 

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Last updated: June 26, 2020

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we are pleased to advise that effective May 11, 2020 the restrictions on veterinary practices have been lifted. Based on these changes, below are some important updates to our operating policies.

1. WE CONTINUE TO SEE ALL CASES BY APPOINTMENT ONLY

This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, heartworm testing, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!

Note: Priority will be given to urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations.

2. SAFETY MEASURES TO KEEP EVERYONE SAFE

3. ONLINE CONSULTATIONS ARE AVAILABLE

If you wish to connect with a veterinarian via message, phone or video, visit our website and follow the "Online Consultation" link.

4. OPERATING HOURS

We are OPEN with the following hours:

Monday - Thursday: 7:30 am - 8:00 pm
Friday: 7:30 am - 6:00 pm
Saturday: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Sunday: CLOSED

5. PET BOARDING & GROOMING

Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Centennial Animal Hospital