The ASPCA POISON Control Center reports that chocolate has topped the list of toxins ingested by pets for the past 10 years. Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, which can cause vomiting, diarrhea, panting, excessive thirst, urination, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythm, tremors, seizures, and death.
“Sugar-free” candies, gums, mints, baked goods, and chocolate containing he artificial sweetener xylitol are poisonous to pets too, causing hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and liver failure in dogs.
Other candies such as lollipops and those with plastic components can cause intestinal obstructions or rupture if ingested.
Dogs have an excellent sense of smell, keep counter and table tops clear, and a lid firmly locked on the trash can prevent pets from eating candy wrappers and other food packaging.
Always warn children not to share their treats with the family pets!
If you suspect your pet has ingested something dangerous or toxic, call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 1-888-426-4435.