My Dog Ate Chocolate Cake: What Should I Do?

There is nothing as divine and decadent as chocolate cake for many people. But while most humans can eat cake safely, this dessert can be toxic and dangerous for dogs.

You should always keep any chocolate cake, black, milk, or white chocolate, and all other foods containing chocolate away from your pup. The same goes for chocolate milk and other beverages and sweets with cocoa, caffeine, sugar, dairy, and high-fat content.

So, if you are wondering what to do if your dog ate some chocolate cake, what the possible home remedies for eating chocolate are, and the symptoms and treatment for chocolate poisoning in dogs, read on.

The first thing to know is that in some cases, especially in smaller dogs that eat larger quantities of chocolate cake, you should immediately call your vet or an animal poison helpline. The sooner treatment is appointed after the dog ate chocolate, the bigger the chances of a fast improvement and survival of the pup.

What Makes Chocolate Cake So Dangerous For Dogs?

The reаson is the theobromine and caffeine in chocolate, which are two compounds known as methylxanthines and cannot be metabolized by canines. This can lead to toxicities, which can sometimes cause severe symptoms and even death.

The theobromine remains in the dog’s system and can cause damage to the dog’s nervous system, leading to symptoms such as twitching, seizures, and hyperexcitability. In more severe cases, this compound found naturally in cacao beans can lead to cardiac arrest and death in pups.

Plus, chocolate cake usually contains sugar and is high in fat. These can lead to flare-ups of the pancreas, pancreatitis, or weight gain and obesity in canines.

Related: Can Dogs Eat Cheesecake?

How Much Chocolate Can Be Toxic For Your Dog?


The danger of chocolate poisoning for dogs depends on the type of chocolate consumed, the amount of cacao in the cake, the weight, size, health of the dog, and the quantity eaten.

Dark bitter chocolate is more toxic than milk or white chocolate. Toy and small dog breeds are more susceptible to poisoning from smaller quantities of chocolate than the large and giant breeds.

For example, dark chocolate can contain up to 9 mg per gram, while milk chocolate has about 2 mg per gram of theobromine. If the cake contains cocoa powder, the danger of poisoning is even more significant because cocoa powder contains about 100mg of theobromine per 1 ounce.

Dogs that weigh about 50 lbs. can experience chocolate toxicity from only ½ ounce of dark chocolate, but smaller pups weighing up to 30 lbs. can experience the toxic effects from half that quantity of dark chocolate.

Can Eating Chocolate Cake Be Fatal To Your Dog?

A bit of chocolate cake usually contains a lower concentration of the toxic compound for dogs – theobromine, than a chocolate bar does.

Still, you can expect that the cake contains at least the same amount of the compound as the same amount of milk chocolate does.

If the cake contains dark chocolate or cocoa powder, the concentration of theobromine can be higher and more dangerous for pups.

Also, the cake can contain other potentially harmful and dangerous ingredients for canines. These include sugar, oil or fat, dairy, raisins, and others.

In mild cases, your pup may experience digestive upsets such as diarrhea or vomiting and increased thirst. Or it can display excessive panting, a change in behavior, or seizures.

This is why it is essential to contact your vet or an emergency pet poison control hotline and monitor your pup for symptoms of chocolate toxicity if it happens to eat some delicious chocolate cake or some fudge, donuts or other foods and drinks containing chocolate.

Actions To Take If Your Dog Eats Chocolate Cake

The symptoms of the ingestion of a toxic dose of chocolate in dogs usually appear within the first two hours but can become evident up to 12 hours after the pup has gobbled up that cake.

The first thing to do is remove any remaining cake from the dog and estimate how much it has ingested already.

Then you should call your veterinarian or the pet poison control hotline ASAP.

The experts will ask you about the weight and health of your pup, the type and quantity of cake consumed, and other essential questions. They will calculate how much chocolate can kill your dog. Then you will receive advice on the actions you need to take.

You may need to go to the hospital immediately for emergency treatment. Or be advised to watch the pup for symptoms and possibly apply some home remedies for chocolate poisoning in dogs.

If your vet asks you to take the dog to the clinic, an examination will be performed. The vet may induce vomiting or apply activated charcoal to help reduce the toxic levels of theobromine in the pup’s system.

Your pup may need to stay in the clinic for further monitoring, IV, and other treatment for any lingering symptoms.

Remember never to try inducing vomiting at home unless your veterinarian approves and gives you exact instructions on how to do it!

What If Your Pup Ate A Chocolate Chip Or A Muffin With Chocolate?

You should refrain from giving your dog any kind of chocolate treats. And should make sure to keep chocolate bars, cake, Kit Kats, baked goods, chocolate milk, Hershey Kisses, and other chocolate goodies safely away from your pup.

Instead of rewarding your fur baby with a potentially dangerous threat, you can give it a healthy and safe one instead. You can give your pup some apples, strawberries, blueberries, or some veggies which are good for canines, such as carrots, peas, or zucchini.

The main rule of thumb is to keep the daily treats for your dog to up to 10% of the total recommended calorie intake. This will help prevent weight gain, obesity, diabetes, and other health problems in your pup.

The best way to reduce the risk of chocolate poisoning of your dog is to secure any chocolate-containing products away from its reach and only give it safe and healthy treats instead!

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