ELI5, Why is chocolate poisonous to dogs?



Is it specifically the cocoa bean? What about the plant causes issues for dogs? Does it harm other animals too?


There is an enzyme that they can’t metabolize so it may cause heart problems. Can’t think of the name…theombo something?

The cause is theobromine, a poison similar to caffeine(and which despite its name does not contain Bromine). The effect is caused by a combination of low body mass, inefficient metabolic processes and for dogs the tendency to indiscriminately eat random things. The low body mass means its a lot easier to find enough of the stuff. a bar of chocolate might kill a 5kg dog but wont bother a 1ton cow. The inefficient metabolism means its about 4 times more poisonous to cats and dogs than it is to humans or rats. And the indiscriminate eating means a dog can eat more chocolate than a human, despite being smaller.

It’s also poisonous human beings for the same.reqson (theobromine), but if I recall correctly you need to eat your own body weight in chocolate to die from it.