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Pet Insurance Claim of the Week: Cocoa Mulch Toxicity

Just like any average dog would, Milo the 3-month-old Havanese puppy was exploring his yard. We all know how puppies love to explore their world with their mouths which often leads to them eating things they shouldn’t. In this case, Milo ingested cocoa mulch from the garden which led to him getting sick.

Similar to chocolate, cocoa mulch contains theobromine which is toxic to dogs. Treatment for chocolate ingestion typically includes inducing vomiting if the chocolate was eaten recently, or active charcoal to prevent absorption. Milo received a blood count and other diagnostic tests as well as IV fluids and hospitalization.

He is home and on the mend and we hope that’s the last of the chocolate for Milo this holiday season!

Total claim amount: $969.40
Deductible applied: -$0
Ineligible costs (exam fee): -$49.95
10% co-insurance: -$91.95
Trupanion repaid: $827.51


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One Response to Pet Insurance Claim of the Week: Cocoa Mulch Toxicity

  1. Here in Tennessee most people don’t use Cocoa mulch although I have seen it offered on the web for sale to people who live here. I am sorry to hear about the dog, there should have been a warning for pet owners. Here in the Nashville area there are hardwood mulches that come from Maple, Oak, and Ash which a dog will probably not try to eat since they are so tough. These hardwoods mostly lay flat and compact tightly to the ground. I sometimes advise clients to install a rock product instead of mulch when they have a dog that digs in the beds because if you use a fist sized river rock the dog will have trouble moving them at all. These types of landscapes are called xeriscapes and are modern, drought tolerant landscapes that don’t use mulch in most situations but instead use stone with a landscape fabric underneath. This may be a better option that mulch for the client mentioned in the article.

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