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As we approach the Easter weekend, vets are reminding owners to keep Easter eggs and other sweet treats out of paws’ reach, as even a small amount can be fatal.

In a survey by the British Veterinary Association (BVA), 60% of companion animal vets reported cases of pets suffering from chocolate poisoning last Easter. Despite ongoing warnings, the figure remains similar to previous years, suggesting more needs to be done to raise awareness of the harm chocolate can cause.

Chocolate contains theobromine which can be highly poisonous to pets, particularly dogs. The level of toxicity depends on the amount and type of the chocolate with dark chocolate and cocoa powder being the most dangerous, and also the size of your dogs, with puppies and smaller breeds most at risk.

Vets are also warning about the dangers of xylitol, a sweetner typically found in low sugar chocolate and chewing gum, which can also be lethal to dogs if not treated promptly.

BVA Junior Vice President, Daniella Dos Santos says, “Easter is an enjoyable, welcome break for many families and chocolate eggs are often part of the fun. However, these sweet treats are not suitable for pets, and can be very dangerous to dogs in particular if accidentally ingested.

“It is concerning that a high proportion of vets are still seeing pets coming in with chocolate poisoning as this can be easily avoided. To avoid an Easter emergency and keep it enjoyable all round, we advise that owners keep chocolate and sweet treats out of reach of pets, inside cupboards and sealed away where possible.”

Other dangers, such as decorations and spring plants, should also be kept out of reach of your four-legged friends. Find out more here.

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