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Published:July 23rd, 2008 13:49 EST
Cocoa Mulch Kills Pets

Cocoa Mulch Kills Pets

By SOP newswire

Yesterday one of our dog agility friends experienced a tragedy and wanted us to pass a special message along to all of our dog-loving friends and family. Please, tell dog owners you know.

Over the weekend the doting owner of two young lab mixes purchased Cocoa Mulch from Target to use in their garden. 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 companies web site, this product is HIG HLY toxic to dogs.

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.`

Cocoa Mulch, which is sold by Home Depot, Foreman`s Garden Supply and other Garden supply stores,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.

Theo bromine is the ingredient that is used to make a ll 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 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.

Please email the manufacturer at michellemessick@hersheys.com and request that accurate information about this product be posted on the packaging to avoid further tragedy.

[See http://www.snopes.com/critters/crusader/cocoamulch.asp, Special thanks to Joseph Pakula, Josoncorp, Cordeal, GA--  ed.]