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Old November 20th, 2008, 10:23 AM
Patman10's Avatar
Patman10 Patman10 is offline
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Cocoa Mulch - Importance: High

Even if you don't have a pet, please pass this to those who do.

Yesterday one of our dog agility friends experienced a tragedy and
wanted me to pass a special message along to all of my dog loving
friends
and family.

Over the weekend the doting owner of two young lab mixes purchased
Cocoa Mulch from Target to use in their garden. < /SPAN>They loved the
way it smelled and it was advertised to keep cats away from their
garden. Their dog Calypso decided that the mulch smelled good enough to
eat and devoured a large helping. She vomited a few times which was
typical when she eats something new but wasn't acting lethargic in any
way.

The next day, Mom woke up and took Calypso out for her morning walk.
Half way through the walk, she had a seizure and died instantly.

Although the mulch had NO warnings printed on the label, upon further
investigation on the company's website, this product is HIGHLY toxic to
dogs and cats. Cocoa Mulch is manufactured by Hershey's, and they claim
that it's true that studies have shown that 50% of the dogs that eat
Cocoa Mulch can suffer physical harm to a variety of degrees (depending
on
each individual dog). However, 98% of all dogs won't eat it.'

This Snopes site gives the following information:
http://www.snopes.com/critters/crusader/cocoamulch.asp
<http://www.snopes.com/critters/crusader/cocoamulch.asp>

Cocoa Mulch, which is sold by Home Depot, Foreman's Garden Supply and
other Garden supply stores, contains a lethal ingredient c alled
'Theobromine'. It is lethal to dogs and cats. It smells like chocolate
and
it really attracts dogs. They will ingest this stuff and die. Several
deaths already occurred in the last=2 02-3 weeks. Just a word of
caution,
check what you are using in your gardens and be aware of what your
gardeners are using in your gardens.

Theobromine is in all chocolate, especially dark or baker's chocolate
which is toxic to dogs. Cocoa bean shells contain potentially toxic
quantities of theobromine, a xanthine compound similar in effects to
caffeine and theophylline. A dog that ingested a lethal quantity of
garden
mulch made from cocoa bean shells developed severe convulsions and died
17 hours later. Analysis of the stomach contents and the ingested cocoa
bean shells revealed the presence of lethal amounts of theobromine.

PLEASE GIVE THIS THE WIDEST DISTRIBUTION!!! You would think no one
would want to use this stuff for fear of killing a neighbors pet.
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Old November 20th, 2008, 11:59 AM
fatcatphotos's Avatar
fatcatphotos fatcatphotos is offline
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Thanks, Pat. As a veterinary technician I appreciate anyone who cares about pets and does their best to keep them safe. I will definitely pass this on. With theobromine being a known toxin to dogs and cats you'd think hershey's would know better, what were they thinking?!
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