press release

Chocolate poisoning in pets doubles at Easter

The number of pets that are 'poisoned' by chocolate doubles over Easter, according to new claims data from LV= pet insurance [1].

Dogs and cats can be effectively 'poisoned' when they eat chocolate and thousands are taken to the vet each year after consuming too much. Chocolate contains theobromine and can cause vomiting, diarrhoea and dehydration if cats and dogs eat it [2].

Analysis of LV= claims data shows that it receives twice as many claims for chocolate poisoning around the Easter and Christmas holiday periods, compared to the rest of the year [3]. With the average cost for vets bills and medicines reaching £320 for chocolate poisoning, it can leave a nasty bite in the pet owner's finances too if they don't have insurance.

"As the Easter weekend approaches and people have more chocolate in the home than usual, we're reminding those with dogs and cats to keep it well out of their reach. If a pet does get hold of some chocolate and eats it, then their owners should contact a vet for advice straight away." Julie Constable, LV= pet insurance manager.

About LV=

LV= employs 5,800 people and serves 5.5 million customers with a range of financial products. We are the UK's largest friendly society and a leading financial mutual.

When we started in 1843 our goal was to give financial security to more than just a privileged few and for many decades we were most commonly associated with providing a method of saving to people of modest means. Today we follow a similar purpose, helping people to protect and provide for the things they love, although on a much larger scale and through a wide range of financial services including insurance, investment and retirement products.

We offer our services direct to consumers, as well as through IFAs and brokers, and through strategic partnerships with organisations such as ASDA, Nationwide Building Society and a range of trade unions.

Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. LVFS is a member of the ABI, the AFM and ILAG. Registered address: County Gates, Bournemouth BH1 2NF.

Notes to editors:

[1] Data is based LV= claims data between 1 February 2013 to 31 January 2014.

[2] http://www.rspca.org.uk/allaboutanimals/pets/dogs/health/poisoning/common

[3] Analysis of LV= claims data shows that twice as many chocolate poisoning claims are received during the months where Easter and Christmas take place than in other months of the year.

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