Halloween is just around the corner and with it comes loads of candy and chocolate. At Kingsbrook Animal Hospital, we want you to know the risks associated if your pet ingests candy or chocolate. While Halloween is a fun, sweet treat holiday, the chance of candy or chocolate ingestion increases due to the amount of it in households. People buy bundles of it to pass out to trick-or-treaters and our children bring tons of it home after visiting house to house.
Some candies have an ingredient in it called Xylitol, which is a sweetener. Xylitol is toxic to our pets if they ingest it and can land a pet in the hospital. You see, Xylitol is not metabolized the same way in our pets as it is in us. If a pet eats candy that has been sweetened with Xylitol, contact your veterinarian right away. Xylitol ingestion causes blood glucose levels to drop drastically and can affect liver function too, making a pet very sick and not able to recover on their own.
Chocolate is another devilishly good Halloween treat and is made from cocoa. Cocoa beans contain caffeine and a chemical called theobromine. The chemical theobromine is toxic to pets. If ingested in small amounts, it can cause vomiting and diarrhea; in larger quantities it can cause tremors, hyperactivity, high blood pressure, seizures, and even death.
We all love sweet treats, and so do our pets. Make sure Halloween treats are kept out of reach of your pet to prevent accidental ingestion. If you suspect your pet has eaten any candy or chocolate, contact your veterinarian or animal poison control center right away. Have a Happy Halloween and safe Trick-or-Treating!!