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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 21648
Experience:  General practice veterinary surgeon with extensive experience in a wide range of species.
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We have a cocker spaniel 3 years old he has pulled a tin of

Customer Question

we have a cocker spaniel 3 years old he has pulled a tin of quality street off of the work top and eaten some with the wrappers we don't know how many. he has been sick a lot and brought up lots of wrappers he is drinking loads of water he will not settle keeps running up an down
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.
How long ago?
How much does he weigh?
How big was the tin and what % was left (to give us an idea of what he had)?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
3 hours ago
14 kgs
750 gram tin he has eaten approx. 350 grams he has been sick 5 or 6 times and brought lots up
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
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Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you,
Now unfortunately that is a severe level dose for chocolate ingestion. It can cause GI upset (vomiting, appetite loss, diarrhea), restlessness, and agitation as we have seen. Still it is a high enough dose that we could see changes to heart/breathing rates, tremors and seizures. And I must warn you that those signs can appear up to 36 hours post ingestion.
Now as it has been 3 hours, we are sadly past a point where we can induce vomiting to get this out. Still, we could consider treating with activated charcoal at this stage. This is available over the counter from the pharmacy or local vets (ask for the high strength version in grams, not the one for gas since you will need a lot of these) and works by binding any remaining material in the stomach. For activated charcoal, we tend to give 1-4 grams per pound every 8 hrs. This can be mixed with food to be fed or with water to syringe feed (do note that it stains, so keep it away from white carpets/clothes). This will just limit how much is absorbed and reduce the intoxication risk here.
Otherwise, our focus at this point would be supportive care. Now with him being sick so many times, I'd be concerned that we are going to need to treat that nausea by injection from his vet to get this settled. That said, if he is keeping things done just now you can try an oral antacid like Milk of Magnesia (0.5tsp every 8 hours) or Zantac (More Info/Dose @ http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/ranitidine-hcl-zantac). These are usually given 20 minutes before offering food to allow absorption and of course you want to double check with your vet before use if your wee one has any know health issues or is on any medications you haven't mentioned. And if he cannot keep that down then injectable treatment would again be our point of call.
Though if he can keep it down, then we can consider offering a light diet option for a few days. Examples of an easily digestible diet include cooked white rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, scrambled egg, or meat baby food (as long as its free from garlic or onion powder). Ideally, we want to offer this as small frequent meals to keep the stomach settled.
Overall, this is a severe chocolate toxicity for Barney. We are past a point where we can induce vomiting but we could limit further signs with activated charcoal. That said, with how nauseous he is and how much he has had, it'd be ideal to have his local vet start injectable treatment and IV fluids to get that toxin out and avoid those more severe signs for him.
Finally, just to note, most veterinary practices here do have contingency plans for emergency care for their patients even when they are not open. Therefore, it is worth ringing the practice as they will likely have a message to direct you on how to contact their out of hours service. And if you don't have a vet you can find one local to you, you can check the RCVS Register (http://findavet.rcvs.org.uk/find-a-vet/) to find your local vets or Vets Now (http://www.vets-now.com/find-an-emergency-vet/ ) who are open all nights/weekends.
Best wishes for poor wee Barney,
Dr. B.
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