View Full Version : Caution about Hershey's cocoa mulch

24th April 2006, 07:24 PM
This just came to my attention on the possible canine mail list

While this is an old (2003) article, there's still a reason for concern and caution since the product is still widely sold, and does not have a warning on the package according to the email i got this morning.

It's a garden mulch that smells like chocolate and is sold in places like Home Depot and Walmart and others, and it has killed and sickened dogs who have eaten it. It contains the chemical present in chocolate that is toxic to dogs. It's made by the Hershey company. Here is what Hershey says on its website FAQ ( http://www.hersheys.com/mulch/faq.shtml ):

Is it true that Cocoa Mulch is harmful to dogs?

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.

Why would a dog eat Cocoa Mulch?

It smells GREAT! . . . . so it must taste GREAT, right?


I find it disturbing that they would give it to dogs in order to test it. I bet they dont' give it to their own pets. :|

24th April 2006, 08:47 PM
It seems strange that Hershey would even be making mulch :huh: and why would you want to put something that smells like chocolate in your yard? It could attract all kinds of animals and rodents.

25th April 2006, 09:56 AM
It's like bark that you put on the flower beds, and I believe is cheaper to produce, luckily most of the bags in UK have some warning one them.....

25th April 2006, 12:28 PM
I suppose you could also argue that garden centres shouldn;t sell a lot of plants that are poisonous to cats and dogs (and humans) -- so many are! Oleander for example, or yew, which is very poisonous to humans and animals and yew berries look very attractive to kids to eat! Jaspar ate one once and I called the vet in a worry but they said one would probably do no harm and it didn't.

This is a good warning though and reminder for people, especially those who might be just getting a first dog and not know that chocolate itself can be lethal to dogs, especially small breeds.

27th April 2006, 11:53 AM
We saw a similar stuff in one of the garden centres here. However, we have enough problems with our two pulling all the bark mulch off the plants and dragging it in the house to even think about buying anything that smells of chocolate :yikes