Monday, December 3, 2012

Toxic Chocolate

It started out as a quiet evening at home. The lights were low, the Christmas tree was twinkling softly, we were all in our pj’s snuggled up on the couch, Christmas movies were playing on the television and the intoxicating aroma of chocolate chip cookies filled the house. Ah…a nice, quiet Saturday night at the Nease house! Rare, but precious.
Max “checking himself in” at the Doggie E.R.

And then it happened.

Our puppy (who is now 44 pounds) Max, our newest Nease, who will be five months old on December 14, was making a strange noise in the kitchen. Kennedy got up to see what it was and screamed, “NO! MOM! MAX JUST ATE A WHOLE BAG OF CHOCOLATE CHIPS!” After more thought, we realized that it was actually more like 3/4 of a bag – the other 1/4 of the bag was baking in the cookies in the oven. Apparently, our “puppy” has now grow tall enough to put his paws on the counter in the kitchen and grab whatever is on the counter top for himself. And that is just what he did.

I’d heard that chocolate was bad for dogs, but I never knew if that was true, so I did what any person would do in today’s world – I posted a status on Facebook asking people if they knew what I should do. Lots of responses later, I was more confused than ever and decided to call the vet. They told me to take him to the Vet ER right away.

We loaded him up into the car and figured he would probably throw up on the way to the ER – I mean, he gets car sick every single time we take him anywhere in the car. But not that night. He was too hyped up to get sick. We finally arrived at the ER and Max ran to the counter, put his paws up, as if to show her what a big boy he was and how he actually got the chocolate in the first place, and proceeded to lick her face. “Oh, this must be our ‘chocolate puppy’! We’ve been expecting you, Max!”

As it turned out, Max needed to stay the night and the entire next day in the hospital. Semi-sweet chocolate chips are very toxic to dogs, even more so than dark chocolate or milk chocolate. His heart was racing at 200 beats per minute and they needed to help him get rid of the chocolate before more of it absorbed into his bloodstream. Had we not taken him, we probably would not have a puppy today. I’m thankful I took him in!

Well, as we picked him up last night, he came running out to us and we cried our eyes out. My husband proclaimed, “Merry Christmas! Your dog is alive!” Which seemed sweet until I realized it meant that the $520 we had to pay was our Christmas present…. Oh well, I couldn’t ask for more. Max is pretty awesome. But we’ll keep the chocolate out of reach from now on.

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