Can I feed my Jack Russell chocolate?
Chocolate: not for sharing!
The short answer is definitely not. There are lots of different stories out there about owners feeding their dogs chocolate for years on end, but in general, you should not feed your Jack Russell chocolate.
The fact is, chocolate is one of many foods that are toxic to dogs, that we humans take for granted. We love chocolate, and merely want to share this joy with our companions. Well, that's a very bad idea.
Chocolate in particular is toxic to dogs because after eating it they usually experience theobromine poisoning, an overdose reaction to theobromine, a bitter component of the cacao plant.
Dogs take much longer to metabolise theobromine than humans do, and the half-life of the substance within a dog is 17.5 hours - that means that it breaks down by a half every 17.5 hours. This extended exposure is what makes the alkaloid fatal for dogs in certain doses.
For example, 15g of dark chocolate per kg of bodyweight is enough to cause problems, and just 1.3g of baking chocolate per kg of bodyweight is sufficient to manifest signs of toxicity.
Other types of chocolate such as milk chocolate, very common in the UK, contain far less theobromine and require much greater doses for signs of toxicity to show up. However, we still don't recommend this just as a matter of safety.
A lovely alternative that your Jack Russell will enjoy are chocolates specifically produced for canines. We've bought this brand for Poppy and she loves it! We've shopped around quite a lot, and Amazon has the cheapest dog treat chocolates we've seen so far.
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