Thursday, April 10, 2014

Gardening time is close

Gardening time is approaching in large parts of the world. For others it's already here, and for pet owners there are some specific things to consider when planning the yard. Such as, cocoa mulch which is wildly popular through the USA is dangerous to pets if they eat it.

Cocoa mulch is made from leftovers from the cocoa bean roasting process. On the upside it's environmentally friendly and it looks and smells good. The downside? It is extremely toxic to dogs and cats.

This type of mulch contains more toxic than milk chocolate or even baker's chocolate, and once a dog starts eating the mulch they generally like it and won't stop. That means that a dog can eat a lot of mulch, and get a significant amount of the toxic.

The below example is based on a 50 lbs dog:
  • 2 ounces of cocoa bean mulch will likely lead to abdominal pain and vomiting
  • 4 ounces of cocoa bean mulch will increase the dog's heart rate
  • 5.5 ounces of cocoa bean mulch is likely to lead to seizures
  • 9 ounces or more can be fatal
Cocoa mulch is not suitable for pet households. It is also wise for pet owners to keep an eye on the neighbors' yards; if they have cocoa mulch, pets must be kept away from it. If a dog or cat finds a way to eat it anyway, go to the vet at once. It is always a good idea to be prepared for emergencies, and to keep the numbers nearby vets and emergency vets programmed in a cell phone and on a note in a place where it is easy to find.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

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