Workingdogs Logo
Working Dogs Outfitter Training Books & Videos Free Trainer Directory
Tactical & Outdoor Gear Online Brand New All Pet Store New Articles
Brand new hot deals! Breed Calendars & Misc. Gifts Working Dog Forum
Updated New Book Titles! Veterinary Library Free User Blogs
The international magazine for and about working and sporting dogs -- and the people who love them.
 
Working Dog Ads Free Working Dog Blog Working Dog Forums Working Dog Events New Working Dog Articles



Facebook

Twitter




Add Working Dogs
Headlines to your Site

Click Here for Details

Subscribe to the
Working Dogs Newsletter
EnterYour e-mail address


Pro Training Shop

The Dog Shop

Tactical and Outdoor Gear Online

Veterinary Library

Brand New All Pet Store

Breed Calendars and Misc. Gifts

Updated New Book Titles!

Our Horse Gear

Dog First Aid

Australian Cattle Dogs

Australian Shepherds

Belgian Malinois

Bernese Mountain Dogs

Border Collies

Bouvier des Flandres

Bulldogs

Cane Corso

Doberman Pinschers

German Shepherd Dogs

Hound Dogs

Labrador Retrievers

Mastiffs

Newfoundlands

Pit Bulls

Rottweilers

Swiss Mountain Dog

K9 Kondo
{short description of image}
Search Amazon:

Enter Keyword:

Canine Trauma




Canines and Chocolate a Dicey Mix

M. Shirley Chong

The dangers of chocolate are widely known, but the composition of chocolate is less well known.

Cocoa beans are full of fat, which is mildly flavoured (think white chocolate). The chocolate flavour comes from the non-fat part of the cocoa bean and that's where the theobromine, the "bad" stuff is. In a given volume of chocolate the more fat there is, the less of the non-fat part there is.

Milk chocolate is so-called because it contains a high percentage of milk fat (yes, butter by another name). It contains varying amounts of the non-fat part of the cocoa bean--just enough for flavour but not enough for the characteristic bitter or "dark" flavour. Semi-sweet and dark chocolate has more of the non-fat part of the cocoa bean, which gives it a more intense and "darker" flavour. Baker's chocolate has still more of the non-fat part of the cocoa bean in it--which is why it is often used in recipes by melting it and adding butter. Baker's chocolate is a compact way to store the flavour of the chocolate, in other words.

Chocolate ice cream doesn't usually have a whole lot of actual chocolate in it--even less (in terms of volume) than a Hershey's plain chocolate bar. By law, ice cream must contain a certain percentage of butterfat in it--which reduces the amount of volume available for the non-fat part of chocolate.

The "problem" ingredient is theobromine. I hesitate to call it a problem because for humans, it's suspected to be the ingredient that makes us feel so nice after eating chocolate (that "chocolate bliss" feeling). For dogs, however, it is a problem because it's metabolized so slowly. Indications of an overdose are: increased nervousness or excitement, trembling, panting unconnected to high activity or heat, heart racing, seizures, coma. Some dogs (usually older ones) can have a heart attack triggered by the rapid heartbeat which forces their hearts to work harder.

The trickiest thing about the theobromine in chocolate is that dogs metabolize it very slowly--it takes about six days for it to leave the dog's body. So if you hand your dog a little chocolate on Monday, and then the dog (unbeknownst to you) gets some more chocolate from one of the kids on Tuesday, an unauthorized foray into the chocolate on Wednesday can cause problems.

The author M. Shirlely Chong is the list administrator for the K9-Cuisine List and can be reached via email at tzjd72a@prodigy.com.




HOME | SEARCH | BOOK & Gear | Classifieds | Articles | Health | Resources | About Us | Privacy Statement
All site contents and design Copyright 1996 © Working Dogs
Please feel free to link from your site to any of the pages on Working Dogs domain in a non-frame presentation only.
You may not copy, reproduce, or distribute any site content in any form.
Copying and distribution of any Working Dogs domain content may be done only with publisher's consent.
For information on reprinting articles please contact Working Dogs.
Page