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Chocolate & Dogs

  

Valentine’s Day is almost here and you are looking for unique ways to celebrate it not only with your loved ones, but also with your biggest admirers – your dogs!

Over 35 million people will receive heart shaped chocolate boxes this Valentine’s making it the busiest day for veterinarians to field calls and treat chocolate poisoning in dogs.

Dogs, like people, love chocolate.  Unfortunately for man’s best friend, chocolate is toxic and can cause severe poisoning and even death.  That’s because chocolate contains a chemical called theobromine (a stimulant similar to caffeine).  Dogs can’t process theobromine, so the levels accumulate and become deadly.

 

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Different types of chocolate contain different amounts of theobromine.  Dark or baker’s chocolate contains 10x more theobromine than milk chocolate.  Levels vary from 130mg to 450mg of theobromine in an ounce of dark chocolate to 44mg to 58mg in an ounce of milk chocolate.

It only takes 115mg of theobromine per 2.2 pounds of body weight to kill a dog. To put that in perspective, 2 ounces of dark chocolate or 20 ounces of milk chocolate could kill a 20 pound dog.  That’s equivalent to approx. three-fourths of a dark Ghirardelli chocolate bar or four and half Hershey chocolate bars.

How many ounces is in your heart shaped box of chocolates? Depends on the size of the box. Russell Stover’s boxes have a net weight range of 1.7oz to 42oz.  Needless to say, you don’t want your dog eating any of it.

If you know your dog ate chocolate, don’t wait to do the math and call your veterinarian immediately.

On the other hand, if your dog snagged a few chocolates on the sly, you’ll want to look for symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, or hyperactivity.  For larger consumption, you will notice an increase in your dog’s heart rate, muscle twitching, excessive panting, restlessness, and increased urination. If not treated immediately, it can lead to hyperthermia, muscle tremors, seizures, coma and death.

 

Prevention is the Best Strategy

Store chocolate in a top-level cabinet or the refrigerator where it is not assessible by your dog.  Dogs are sneaky, smart, and they love chocolate, so choose a good hiding place.

Never leave chocolate out on counters or coffee tables.  If you want to leave chocolates out for guests, secure your dog in another room or leave them with a friend for the night.

Have a heart shaped box at home that you are dying to dig into?  Secure your dog in another room while enjoying your treats. Dogs really do love the smell and taste of chocolate, and tempting them by eating it in front of them will make them want to find it later.

Doggy Safe Valentine Recipes

So how do you show some love to Fido and make him happy on this special occasion? Feeling bad that you can’t share your valentine treats? You can make your own by substituting carob for chocolate.  Here are two recipes that you and your dog will enjoy!

Peanut Butter & “Chocolate” Truffles

From the The Daily Puppy

Ingredients

1/2 cup peanut butter

1/3 cup whole wheat flour

¼ cup whey protein powder or 3 TBL dry powdered milk

¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract

2 cups carob chips

½ teaspoon vegetable shortening

In a medium bowl, combine 1/2 cup of peanut butter and 1/3 cup of whole wheat flour. Once mixed, add 3 tablespoons of dry powdered milk OR ¼ cup whey protein powder and ¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract.

Mix until dough forms.  If dough is too dense or dry, add 1 teaspoon of water in increments until texture is firm, but not sticky.

Grease cookie sheet. Form dough into ½ inch to 1-inch balls (depending on the size of your dog) and place on the cookie sheet.

In a microwave-safe bowl, melt 2 cups of carob chips for 30 seconds on high. Stir and microwave in 10-second increments until fully melted. If needed, add ½ teaspoon of vegetable shortening for a smoother consistency.

Use toothpick and dip peanut butter balls into melted carob and return to cookie sheet to dry.

Makes 12-15 truffles. Store in a cool, dry place.

Mock Chocolate Carob-Walnut Bark

From All Things Dog Blog

Ingredients:

4 cups carob chips

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup chopped walnuts (dry roasted peanuts are good too)

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions:

Prepare an edged cookie sheet by lining it with recycled tin foil. Lightly spray with cooking spray.

Melt carob chips in a glass bowl in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Stir and repeat process. Stir in the peanut butter and microwave for another 15 seconds. Stir to combine. Add the nuts and cinnamon, stirring these in until evenly distributed.

Pour this mixture onto the prepared cookie sheet, spreading evenly. Chill for 15 minutes in a freezer or 30 minutes in your refrigerator.

When ready, break up the bark into 1 to 2 inch pieces. Store bark in a sealed container in your refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Recipe makes about 70 one to two-inch pieces of deliciousness that you can delight your party guests and their dogs with.

The above delicious yet safe Valentine’s Day recipes for dogs and important tips and advice are from Andrea Servadio, Co-Founder of Fitdog Sports Club in Santa Monica, Calif.

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Filed under all you need is a dog, animals, chocolate, dog health, dogs, love, Valentine's Day

it’s a holiday miracle !

Loving Pets treats and products show that they really do love pets…all of the treats are 100% natural for starters…

Cici is not a big fan of fruits and veggies as I’ve said before… in fact, she has been known to spit them out, if she lets them into her mouth to begin with… but Loving Pets knows how to lure dogs into eating apples, bananas, sweet potatoes, carrots and other veggie and fruit goodies… wrap some chicken around them and Score !

not only did Cici scarf up every treat, but she was barking at me for more… now she loves her treats and cookies as most dogs do, but she does not usually bark at me for more as she did with these…

http://www.lovingpetsproducts.com/pet-treats/gourmet-meat-wraps

and her gorgeous new pink Pupparazzi bowl is delicious, too… slurp-free… cici is a big slobbery eater but this bowl makes her eating a slob-free experience… she also seems to eat slower so between the treats and the dog bowl, these products are a miracle for both me and Cici.

four paws up plus two thumbs up to Loving Pets for these great products for dogs.

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Filed under dog health, dog treats, four paws up, healthy dog food, product review

got a shaggy dog story?

somehow this video did not get posted…. it’s hilarious…

http://ftp.youtube.com/watch?v=u0Ve4zFvzAA&feature=related

If you love dogs and love to write, this is your chance to tell us your best dog story. from (1888PressRelease)

SANDPOINT, Idaho – Whether they want to create a “shaggy dog story” or just a heartwarming tale, <a href=”http://www.1888pressrelease.com/new-dazzling-dogs-writing-contest-lets-writers-tell-their-be-pr-53uo40wg1.html#&#8221; writers have a new opportunity to tell the world about their favorite dogs, thanks to a new writing contest from Logical Expressions, Inc. Dogs can be silly, inspiring, goofy, loyal, heartwarming, and fun, and almost all dog lovers have a story to tell about their favorite canine.The contest is being held in honor of Freelance Writers week, but it is open to professional and amateur writers, freelance or not.

Essays can be about “bad” dogs like Marley (of “Marley and Me” fame), heroic like Lassie, or just a great “best friend” story. Entrants are eligible to win free writing software and the opportunity to be published in a book.Book authors and publishers Susan Daffron and James Byrd of Logical Expressions, Inc. will select approximately 20 winners from the entries received. Authors of the selected stories receive a free license for Logical Expressions IdeaWeaver writing software (a $50 value) and a free copy of the book of dog stories when it is published.

Like other pet books from Logical Expressions (Happy Hound and Happy Tabby), the book of essays will be offered to animal shelters and humane groups at a discount for use as a fundraising tool. One story will also be selected as a Grand Prize winner. This author receives the other prizes, a $50 Grand Prize, and will be written up as a case study on the IdeaWeaver Web site with a link back to the author’s site (if available).

Although the contest does not have an entry fee, participants must download the free trial of IdeaWeaver and follow the instructions on the contest page to enter.

Entries must be 800-1500 words and received by March 31, 2008.”IdeaWeaver” is free to try for 30 days. A license costs $49.95. The free trial download of the software is available at: http://www.IdeaWeaverSoftware.com. The site features a free “getting started” video, case studies, and a free e-course called “Get Unstuck! 15 Ways to Jumpstart Your Creativity, Get Organized, and Finish Your Writing Project.” Click the Writing Contest link for the Dazzling Dogs contest entry instructions and rules. For information on other products, visit:

http://www.ideaweaversoftware.com/contest.aspx

Rachael Ray and her pit bull Isaboo… cutey…

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Filed under all you need is a dog, animals, creativity, dog writing contest, dogs, mutts, pit bull, publicity, publishing, Rachael Ray, shaggy dog story, writing

bless the beasts and the children…

National Association to PROTECT Children - www.protect.org

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Filed under all you need is a dog, All you need is love, animals, belly rubs, children and dogs, dog friendly, dogs, love, pet care, smile