Help! My Dog Ate A Coffee Bean

Help! My Dog Ate A Coffee Bean

Last Updated: August 20, 2023
correct answerThe Short Answer is:

Dogs can be poisoned by coffee beans if they consume too many of them. Coffee beans are a stimulant because they contain caffeine. The good news is that if your dog eats only a few coffee beans, then they are unlikely to become ill.

The purpose of this article is to explain “Help! My Dog Ate A Coffee Bean“.

Is your dog always following you around the kitchen?

Help! My Dog Ate A Coffee Bean

My own does. 

No matter how much I do not move shes there or thereabouts pretending not to look at me.

She knows however that sooner or later a scrap or morsel of food will fall to the ground.

When I take a loaf of bread out of its wrapper or a few stray flakes of porridge oats when I carelessly pour them into a saucepan.

I cringe when I think about stray coffee beans from the bag as I pour them into the grinder.

I do not bat an eyelid when it comes to bread and porridge oats.

However what about the beans? Would my dog be harmed if it ate a bean?

Are our coffee beans toxic to dogs?

Dogs can be poisoned by coffee beans if they consume too many of them.

Coffee beans are a stimulant because they contain caffeine. 

The good news is that if your dog eats only a few coffee beans then they are unlikely to become ill. 

I will later use my Golden Retriever as an example.

By using some online calculators I believe she can eat over 200 coffee beans without harming herself. 

Additionally although coffee and caffeine are harmful to dogs they are not as dangerous as chocolate- or at least they are not as dangerous as some types of chocolate.

What is caffeine and how does it affect a dog?

Caffeine belongs to a class of stimulants called methylxanthine. Metaxanthine stimulates the bodys nervous system. 

Because caffeine is legal and unregulated it is the most widely consumed psychoactive drug in the world. 

How much caffeine does it take to poison a dog?

The average amount of caffeine per kilogram in dogs that die from caffeine poisoning is between 100- 200 mg.

Therefore your dogs size and weight are very important factors.

In the case of a small dog eating the same amount of coffee beans as a large dog the smaller dog would be at greater risk of poisoning. 

Its hard to grasp this so I’m going to provide an example to help you.

Sylvie one of my Golden Retrievers weighs 30 kg. 

By using the chocolate toxicity calculator on this page and by finding out the weight of a coffee bean on this page…

According to my calculations Sylvie can consume approximately 220 coffee beans before she needs emergency treatment at the vet.

How much caffeine is in a coffee bean?

Its not an exact science to determine how much caffeine is in a coffee bean since there are two varieties of coffee beans- Arabica and Robusta.

As a result it is a bit like trying to answer the question “how much sugar is in a cookie?”.”””

It is known that an Arabica bean and a Robusta bean contain about the same amount of caffeine. 

There is about 6 mg of caffeine in roasted Arabica beans compared to about 10 mg in roasted Robusta beans.  

What effect does the roast level have?

If you’re a coffee-lover then you have probably heard that how much caffeine there is in a coffee bean or ground coffee depends on how its roasted. 

It is traditional to have three levels of roasting: light medium and dark.

Dark beans have obviously been roasted for longer than light or medium roast beans. 

It is widely believed in the coffee world that darker roasted beans contain more caffeine than lighter or medium roasted beans.

There is no truth to this. 

Each coffee bean has approximately the same amount of caffeine regardless of how it is roasted. 

Number of coffee beans vs weight of coffee

You will not notice any difference in roast level if you are only concerned with the number of coffee beans your dog ate. 

A roast level can however make a big difference in another way.

Roast level matters if you are concerned about your dog eating a certain amount of coffee beans.

The caffeine content of all coffee beans may be the same but there are more dark roast coffee beans in a 50 g scoop than there are medium or light roasted coffee beans.

More caffeine means more beans in this regard. 

What are the side effects of caffeine poisoning in a dog?

The toxicity calculator that I linked to a short while ago is very helpful because depending on the number of coffee beans that your dog has consumed it will indicate if “no treatment is necessary” or if “emergency treatment is needed”.

Some of you might want a bit more information since some dogs may exhibit symptoms of a milder poisoning below those thresholds. 

How do you tell if you have caffeine poisoning?

It is common knowledge that people who drink too much coffee are “wired.”. 

A number of the same behaviors can be observed in dogs including restlessness hyperactivity and extreme thirst. 

Although you might also experience diarrhea and vomiting. 

Treatment of dog with caffeine poisoning

In the event that your dog displays any of the above symptoms you need to call your vet and tell them what your dog ate and how they are behaving.

You should not be frantically searching the Internet for home remedies on this occasion.

Book an appointment with your veterinarian and let the professionals handle it. 

Chocolate covered coffee beans

You might be thinking now that caffeine poisoning is terrible and that things can not possibly get worse.

They can unfortunately.

The result is caffeine poisoning combined with chocolate poisoning.

What do you mean my dog steals my chocolate biscuits and eats my coffee beans?

Actually that is possible but I had another idea in mind.

A chocolate-covered coffee bean or a chocolate-covered espresso bean.

Chocolate contains a chemical that is toxic to dogs.

It is called theobromine and is given the same toxicity level as caffeine.

While the level of caffeine is consistent across different coffee beans the concentration of theobromine differs from type to type of chocolate.

Milk chocolate and white chocolate have much lower levels than dark chocolate. 

Online searches show that chocolate-covered coffee beans can be covered in dark milk or white chocolate.

Coffee beans that are covered in chocolate are the most dangerous for your dog. 

Ground beans vs instant coffee vs tea vs Red Bull

In this last section I will compare different types of drinks that contain caffeine to determine which one contains the most caffeine.

Its no secret that Red Bull contains caffeine is it?

Although I would have preferred to compare it with the teaspoon I could not find enough detailed information.

Thus I will compare how much caffeine is in a cup of ground coffee instant coffee a cup of tea and a cup of Red Bull. 

I meant something around 240 ml by a cup. 

Ground CoffeeInstant CoffeeTeaRed Bull
95- 120 mg60- 80 mg 47- 60  mg70 mg

The clear winner here is ground coffee – if winning means having the highest caffeine content.

Besides the amount of caffeine in Red Bull of course these figures should just be regarded as rough guidelines.

Instant coffee brands differ quite a bit in the amount of coffee they contain.

Ground coffee has almost twice as much caffeine as a cup of tea but the amount of caffeine can differ between the two.

The amount of caffeine in ground coffee varies depending on how finely it has been ground and how long the coffee grinds remain in contact with the water.

It is the same with tea- the longer the tea bag is left in the water the more caffeine it contains. 

Would you rather feed your dog instant coffee ground coffee tea leaves or a can of Red Bull?

From this bad bunch which is the best?

In an ideal world you wouldnot want him access to any of them but if I had to choose I’d go with your dog accidentally getting hold of a teabag.

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Amanda Dogs Trainer

Amanda (Author)

With over a decade of experience, Amanda is a distinguished dog trainer. Her expertise in canine behavior has transformed countless lives, fostering harmonious human-canine connections. Through compassionate and personalized approaches, she empowers owners to understand and connect with their furry companions, creating a legacy of joyful tails and transformed lives.

Osvaldo Maciel Dogs Trainer

Osvaldo Maciel (Content Reviewer)

Osvaldo Maciel, a stalwart in the field with 14 years of experience, is a revered dog trainer. His journey is defined by a profound understanding of canine behavior, shaping unbreakable human-canine bonds. Osvaldo guides owners to connect with their beloved pets, leaving an indelible mark of happiness and transformation. His legacy shines through the countless lives he has touched.

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