With Halloween fast approaching (31 October), dog owners need to be careful what they feed them as chocolates and sweet treats can be deadly.
Theobromine is the toxic chemical in chocolate that causes the problem and makes your dog ill.
The amount varies according to they type and quality of chocolate. If the chocolate contains a higher coco content, it can cause more damage.
Even a small amount of high quality dark chocolate eaten by a dog can cause clinical signs such as hyperexcitability and restlessness, vomiting, tremors and convulsions.
Sweets can also be a problem, with sugarless sweets sweetened with xylitol causing liver damage and death in some dogs.
If your pet does become ill, do you have access to help, perhaps through your pet insurance? For example if you have Tesco Pet Insurance you can call Vetfone. This is a 24 hour service so you can anytime, even out-of-hours and get advice from qualified veterinary nurses.
Avoiding giving your dog chocolates and sweets in the first place is clearly the best option but if you have a problem access to help through such as your pet insurance can be a great help.
Don’t forget too that Halloween can sometimes be a scary time for all ages, not least animals. It may be worth keeping your animal in a quiet room, away from the front door, to keep them calmer – perhaps even give them a new toy to play with to occupy them so that they don’t feel like they’re missing out and being punished.
It’s best not to take your dog trick or treating – they can become excited and uncontrollable and if they get frightened may even bite. Keep them indoors at all times.
Also remember to keep pumpkins out of your pet’s reach – they can easily knock them over and run the risk of themselves being burned or potentially creating a fire in your home.