The cat ate chocolate: the risks and remedies

Did your cat manage to eat some chocolate on the sly? Beware of the symptoms that may appear and what to do if the cat has eaten chocolate.

We already know that chocolate is bad for dogs, but what happens if the cat eats chocolate? Whether it’s dark, milk or white, it doesn’t matter: chocolate drives everyone crazy, including our cats, albeit to a lesser extent than dogs. To us humans, excessive consumption can be harmful but in the cat it can even have a lethal effect. This is due to the substances contained in it that leave no escape for our little furry friend. The effects on his body are in fact devastating. But then all is lost if we find out that the cat ate chocolate? Absolutely not. You just need to know how to intervene.

Because chocolate is toxic

It seems almost unbelievable that such a good food can do so badly, and yet it is. This happens because chocolate contains an alkaloid substance, theobromine, which can cause various disorders within the animal’s body: accelerated heart rate, increased blood pressure and convulsions. The effects of course also depend on the amount of substance that has been ingested and the same risk factors change according to the type of chocolate that the cat has eaten: in general it can be said that milk is the least harmful, as opposed to dark.

And let’s not forget the percentage of fat it contains: pancreatitis in cats and other gastrointestinal disorders are the most likely effects. The latter also depend on the amount of caffeine contained in cocoa, which also affects the functioning of the kidneys, heart and nervous system. Of course you have to consider the variables, but in principle the effects of chocolate intake in animals can be summarized as:

  • diarrhea,
  • He retched,
  • hyperactivity,
  • irregular heartbeat,
  • muscle tremors,
  • increased urination,
  • convulsions,
  • death (which often occurs from internal bleeding or heart attack).

Chocolate for animals: who risks more between dogs and cats?

The answer is certainly the first, not least because chocolate poisoning (or theobromine) in dogs is much more frequent than in cats. But it is equally true that cats just need a smaller dose of chocolate to feel bad and even kill it. This has a very specific reason: cats are less gluttonous of this food because they do not taste it, so they are less inclined to eat it. In fact, animals in general have no need to eat sweet foods. The fact remains that cats, as well as dogs, are very curious to try cocoa-based products and may be attracted by their scent. But keeping it away is always a good idea.

The cat ate chocolate: what to do

If we have succumbed to the temptation to let him taste sweet foods or the cat has appropriated it by playing on our distraction, we must intervene immediately. First you need to pay attention to the symptoms to better explain them to the vet. The first thing to do is to estimate the amount of chocolate ingested and maybe take a look at the composition. All this information must be collected to give the veterinarian the opportunity to create a clear picture of the situation: the expert will also evaluate the general condition of the cat, its age and its state of health.

The vet may request that the cat be admitted to a clinic or otherwise will advise you to monitor it at home. It is therefore useful to understand in what quantities chocolate can have negative effects on the animal and its degree of toxicity. Less than 10 mg of theobromine shouldn’t cause any particular problems, unless it’s a cat with liver problems. An amount greater than 10 mg is more dangerous and requires veterinary intervention: 40-50 mg or more of theobromine can be lethal.

If we consider that a milk chocolate bar weighs about 25 grams, it will correspond to about 50 mg of theobromine. The same dark chocolate bar contains up to 200!

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