A nibble of something caffeinated probably isn’t going to hurt your pooch, but if he ingests a lot, it can become toxic in his system. Excessive intake of caffeine leads to vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, fever and an abnormal heartbeat, just in the early stages. As symptoms progress, seizures and heart failure occur, possibly leading to death.
Your barking buddy can have as much as 140 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram of body weight, as reported in the 2001 edition of “Veterinary Technician.” So as an example, if he weighs 20 pounds, which is about 9.1 kilograms, he’d have to take in around 1,275 milligrams of caffeine for it to possibly be lethal. Just to be safe, if your furry friend happens to dig through the trash or pantry, take him to the vet right away. He could experience serious symptoms at much smaller doses.
Melodie Anne Coffman specializes in overall wellness, with particular interests in women's health and personal defense. She holds a master's degree in food science and human nutrition and is a certified instructor through the NRA. Coffman is pursuing her personal trainer certification in 2015.