Chocolate Danger Chart for Dogs

Hopefully, everyone knows that small amounts of certain kinds of chocolate (especially the dark chocolates) can kill your dog.

Jo, a reader, had a heart-stopping day when one of her dogs got into a box of chocolates. She found this National Geographic Chocolate Chart which lists different kinds of chocolates and lets you determine by your dog’s weight whether you need to rush your dog to the vet or let nature take its course.

To change the weight to what your dog weighs, slide the small yellow tab by the “1” up or down to the correct weight.

For example, Kiera at 49 lbs., could eat 405 ounces of white chocolate and expect no more discomfort than vomiting and diarrhea. (Yeah, I think anyone eating about 25 POUNDS!!! of white chocolate would expect a little vomiting and diarrhea.) Yet if she ate only 3 ounces of cocoa, she could be facing death!

While we’re aware of the danger of chocolate (among other human foods) and are extremely careful, we also know a variation on Murphy’s Law operates for dogs too — if a dog can find a way to eat what it’s not supposed to, it will. So I’ve printed out the charts for both my dogs and have them with the emergency phone #s.

7 thoughts on “Chocolate Danger Chart for Dogs”

  1. I wrote about the issue of chocolate toxicity on it’s down to a compound called theobromine, which is present at higher levels the darker the chocolate. Think of it as an analogous compound in cocoa to caffeine in coffee beans, and cocaine in coca beans.

    Dose per body mass is always key to likely effects of any toxic compound. A Newfoundland munching its way through a packet of chocolate chip cookies is less likely to suffer ill effects compared with a chihuahua nibbling on a slab of extra dark.


  2. Rhei, writer

    Good thing that I was informed by my parents that chocolates are really bad for dogs. I do love my dogs as I do love myself; that’s why chocolates were banned in our house and we’re pro to milk. Though my dog is now 7 years old and I’m 21- we’re still drinking milk as part of our meal. Chocolates are delicious but milk can provide us stronger bones.

  3. A neighbour’s dog once ate the Halloween chocolates meant for the kids. It’s something I’ve secretly wanted to do for years–it’s hard to ignore chocolate’s call. The dog was all right, though he suffered a stomach ache for the indulgence.

  4. Fuzzy Logic, yup, my Kiera is a master sneak-er too. Add to that, that she can jump up on our counters and it keeps life verrrrry interesting. LOL.

    Therese, thanks for the reminder on the mulch.

  5. What a helpful website! Thanks for posting that. I didn’t realize that such a small amount of cocoa could do so much damage.

    Something else to keep in mind is to keep pets away from cocoa mulch. It’s made with the cocoa bean shells and contains theobromine, the same deadly chemical in cocoa.

  6. That’s a great resource. Could have used that when Qay snuck a piece of my birthday cake.

    Incidentally, white “chocolate” doesn’t have any theobromine in it because it has no cocoa powder in it.

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