Can you give chocolate to dogs?

In this article, we will answer the question “Can you give chocolate to dogs?”, and what foods are dangerous for dogs?

Can you give chocolate to dogs?

No, you cannot give chocolate to dogs. The toxic effects vary with the type of chocolate, the amount of chocolate consumed by your dog, and the weight of your dog. 

If your dog ingested chocolate or shows symptoms of poisoning, contact Pet Poison Helpline (855-213-6680, fee applies) for advice. More on this in the article below.

Why is chocolate toxic to dogs?

The presence of caffeine and theobromine in chocolate is what makes it toxic to dogs. Both of these compounds increase the heart rate of your dog and stimulate its nervous system. 

Cocoa powder contains the highest concentration of theobromine, then comes unsweetened baker’s chocolate, semisweet chocolate, dark chocolate, and milk chocolate. 

According to this order of toxicity, milk chocolate is the least toxic because it contains the least amount of theobromine. Mild symptoms of chocolate toxicity appear if your chocolate has ingested 20 mg of methylxanthines per kilogram of body weight.

At 40 to 50 mg/kg dosage, cardiac symptoms of chocolate toxicity appear. Dosages greater than 60 mg/kg result in seizures. 

A single bar of Hershey’s chocolate weighs around 1.55 ounces which means that even a single bar can have disastrous effects on a dog’s health especially if it is smaller in size.

You can usually get away with eating a scrap of chocolate cake or a bit of chocolate bar if your dog is a large breed. But chocolate is something that should be kept away from your dog.

9 foods dogs can’t eat


Avocados cannot be fed to dogs. Avocado contains a fungal toxin known as persin, in minute quantities, that does not hurt humans. But even the smallest amounts of Persin can lead to vomiting and diarrhea in dogs. Moreover, the avocado seeds pose a choking hazard for your dog.

Grapes and raisins 

The reason behind the toxicity of grapes and raisins for dogs is not yet known fully. But it is confirmed that even as small as 2 raisins can be toxic for your dog. If you suspect your dog has ingested grapes or raisins, induce vomiting and get medical help.

Onions, garlic, and chives

Whatever form you feed the garlic, onions, or chives to your dog, they are toxic. The toxicity results in the destruction of the red blood cells of your dog which results in anemia. 

Therefore, you must keep your dog away from the garden where you have planted any of these herbs or veggies.

Macadamia nuts

Macadamia nuts induce vomiting in your dog and cause weakness and depression. Before feeding any cookies, cakes, muffins, or trail mixes to your dog, be sure that it does not contain any macadamia nuts. 

Macadamia nuts lead to food poisoning in dogs if ingested in large amounts. Symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, tremors, and fevers.

Raw eggs 

Cooked, hard-boiled, or scrambled eggs are a delicious and nutritious treat for your dog. But the same can’t be said for raw eggs which are commonly contaminated with Salmonella. 

Cooking temperatures destroy Salmonella, rendering the eggs safe for the consumption of your dog. The same applies to raw meat or seafood. Always feed fully cooked meat or fish to your dog.


Alcohol is not made for dogs. Even a sip of whiskey, beer, wine, or even jell-O-shot can have disastrous effects on your dogs’ health. Alcohol causes vomiting, diarrhea, breathing problems, coma, and even death in dogs.


The husk of the walnut, the nut itself, and the bark of the walnut tree may be contaminated with toxic mold. 

This mold produces a powerful neurotoxin that leads to tremors and seizures upon consumption. Black nuts are a forbidden nut for both dogs and horses, as it leads to colic and laminitis.


Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that is used to artificially sweeten baked goods, gums, and candies, some types of peanut butter, etc. In dogs, xylitol leads to hyperglycemia and even liver failure. It happens due to the rapid release of xylitol into the bloodstream. 

This, in turn, puts a lot of strain on your liver and causes it to release large amounts of insulin that lowers the glucose level in your blood.


Caffeine is toxic to dogs in any form, be it coffee, tea, soda, energy drinks, coffee grounds, or coffee beans. 

Caffeine won’t hurt your dog in small amounts but in sufficient amounts, it can make your dog restless, and hyperactive. If left untreated, this condition may become fatal.


In this article, we answered the question “Can you give chocolate to dogs?”, and what foods are dangerous for dogs?


Hello, I'm Sana Ameer. I'm a student of Food Science and Technology at UVAS. I like to bake and I aspire to become a Food blogger.