Home  Dog Breeding  Dog Breeding Business  Puppy Training  Shipping Your Puppy

Cocoa Mulch. Can it kill your dog?

Just in case you haven't seen this yet.....

Yesterday, one of our clients experienced a tragedy and wanted me to pass this special message along to all of my dog loving friends and family. I was hoping you could forward this to your contact list.

My client was the owner of two young lab/golden retriever mixes. Over the weekend, they purchased Cocoa Mulch to use in their garden. They loved the way it smelled and it was advertised to keep cats away from their garden. They set the bag in their yard. Their dog Calypso, decided that the mulch smelled good enough to eat so she broke into it and devoured a large helping.

She vomited a few times which was typical of her when she would get into something she shouldn't have gotten in to.

She was not 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. Denise (Calypso's mom) wanted me to pass this information along so no one had to experience the same tragedy she went through.

In Loving Memory of Calypso.

About Cocoa Mulch

Cocoa Mulch is manufactured by Hershey's, and they claim that "It is 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."

Information about the mulch can be found here. This site gives the following information:

Cocoa Mulch, which is sold by garden supply stores and contains a lethal ingredient called "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 2-3 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 the ingredient that is used to make all chocolate especially dark or baker's chocolate. This 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 cacao bean shells developed severe convulsions and died 17 hours later. Analysis of the stomach contents and the ingested cacao bean shells revealed the presence of lethal amounts of theobromine.

Thank You.

Personal Note: I received this email from a customer and cannot verify the events that were described in the letter. However I did go to the website and did some checking. I found out that what was describe in the letter could happen. Hopefully someone will read this letter and save a dog.