Many dogs wolf down as much chocolate as they can find. That's why the sweet treat poses such a threat to them, reports Better Homes and Gardens, a Meredith magazine.

Eating even a little chocolate can create a severe reaction in a small dog. Dogs are more likely than cats to become poisoned by eating chocolate, because felines are generally more discriminating eaters.The most dangerous delicacy is baking chocolate, which contains almost 10 times the active ingredient, theobromine, of milk chocolate. One ounce of cooking chocolate or part of a 1-pound bag of candy-coated chocolate pieces can be life threatening to a pet weighing up to 10 pounds.

A dog's reactions to chocolate range from vomiting and diarrhea to seizures and death. Other possible side effects include restlessness, frequent urination, irregular heartbeat, overactivity and tremors.

Symptoms may not appear for several hours. Even after the pet has been treated by a veterinarian, complete recovery may take several days.

If it is known or suspected that a pet has eaten a large amount of chocolate, contact a veterinarian immediately.