All Things Gardening forum: Not sure where to post this: pets and cocoa mulch are a bad mix?

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Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
May 27, 2013 8:46 PM CST
One of the people I chat with on FB about dogs posted a warning about a type of mulch called Cocoa Mulch and apparently it can be very dangerous to pets.

Here's what snopes has to say about it:
http://www.snopes.com/critters/crusader/cocoamulch.asp

May be a bit of a tempest in a tea pot, but since my own dog has a very bad habit of trying to eat the wrappers from chocolate candies that DH buys, I personally would be hesitant to use this particular type of mulch. FWIW.
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
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CarolineScott
May 28, 2013 12:00 PM CST
That is good to know.
I don't have pets,but people walk their dogs past here.
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
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gardengus
Jun 3, 2013 7:28 PM CST
I have used coco bark mulch in the past It smells wonderful and if an animal really liked chocolate I could see a problem . I have stopped using the coco bark mulch because we have enough rain here that it quickly becomes nasty , forms a single moldy mass that is slimy underneath.
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Name: Ginger
Fountain, Florida (Zone 8b)
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gingin
Jun 5, 2013 1:34 PM CST
YUCK (Where is the "holding my nose" icon Hilarious! )
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Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
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gardengus
Jun 5, 2013 2:50 PM CST
Smiling
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
RpR
Jun 2, 2016 1:10 PM CST
I have used it for over a decade with fantastic results.
After a while it does lose its cocoa color but I am in Mn and have never had it mold once out of the bag.
After the color is gone up here it pretty much become the color of dark rosewood and eventually just becomes dirts.
As it has a fertilizer value of 2.5-1-3 it has worked incredibly well for my roses while, if you put down at least two inches done a great job of controlling weeds.
If you do get weeds they are easy to pull as often their roots are in the loose mulch and not down in the hard soil.

When it was a lot cheaper I put down to a depth of six inches in my corn area.
Even in dry weather the soil did not dry out and the few weeds, were easily removed.
If it were as cheap now as it was then I would put it over the whole garden but sadly it is now twice the price it was five years ago.
It can be hard on dogs but does not affect cats, squirrels or any other critter I have around here, including chipmunks, as one lives in the area it is spread.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
Jun 2, 2016 3:27 PM CST
RpR said:
It can be hard on dogs ...


Um, that was sort of the point of the original post.


Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J. (Zone 6a)
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NJBob
Jun 2, 2016 6:14 PM CST
I had read about this before but have never seen it for sale.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Jun 2, 2016 7:02 PM CST
I wouldn't use it either, Woofie -- and I really think they should put some kind of warning about it being toxic to dogs on the label and maybe a sign in the "mulch department" of the store selling it, as well.
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Name: Carol Roberts
Huntington Beach, CA (Zone 10b)
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CarolHB
Jun 2, 2016 7:45 PM CST
Well, dogs aren't to be fed chocolate under any circumstances, but the cocoa mulch does not break down in the digestive system. It just clumps into a ball and will fairly quickly kill the dog. Too bad our dogs are as stupid about eating junk food as we are.
Can't complain too loud about how the ball bounces when I'm the one who dropped it.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
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RickCorey
Jun 2, 2016 7:50 PM CST
Good point!

I was thinking "dumb dogs, eating bark and hulls" ... but I just had pizza for lunch. Who's the dumb one NOW?
Name: Carol Roberts
Huntington Beach, CA (Zone 10b)
Sunset 24
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CarolHB
Jun 2, 2016 10:54 PM CST
I can't get out of Trader Joe's without several really tasty pizzas. But, being very responsible I don't share it with the dog.
Can't complain too loud about how the ball bounces when I'm the one who dropped it.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
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RickCorey
Jun 3, 2016 10:19 AM CST
I admire that kind of responsibility, and I'm going to start NOT sharing liquor, cigars and fatty prime rib with my cat.

Well, actually I'll continue not sharing any of those things ... because I'm a responsible pet owner!

Thumb of 2016-06-03/RickCorey/a3c2e8


Thumb of 2016-06-03/RickCorey/f64edc

springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
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Frillylily
Jun 3, 2016 10:36 AM CST
but you let him have cat nip right? Hilarious!

anyway, my Romeo said he is NOT dumb, he smelled the chocolates and they smelled yummy so he put them in his tummy where they felt good... for a few minutes... before he got really sick. Since his brain is the size of an acorn, he doesn't know any better. I know better, but I eat it anyway Sticking tongue out

My other poodle found a chocolate mint patty foil wrapper and brought it to me. She was letting me know that she found the wrapper and apparently whoever ate it didn't give her any, and could she have one? pretty please? And so mommy threw the wrapper away and her whole little face wilted watching it go into the can... Crying
Name: Carol Roberts
Huntington Beach, CA (Zone 10b)
Sunset 24
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CarolHB
Jun 3, 2016 11:10 AM CST
My idiot dog found a chicken leg bone on the ground next door and brought it to show me, thankfully, before eating it. I immediately exchaged it for a Milk Bone and the doofus looked for it for three days. During that time I had a talk with the owner of the place next door about leaving garbage lying around on the ground, and exactly how I felt about it, especially since we have critters around, including coyotes. Not to mention His Royal Preciousness.
Can't complain too loud about how the ball bounces when I'm the one who dropped it.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
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RickCorey
Jun 3, 2016 11:45 AM CST
Frillylily said:but you let him have cat nip right? Hilarious!
...


In moderation!

Actually, Becky (my DSO) has the Catnip Privilege so the cat (Toby) only begs from one of us.

It has taken him years to realize that I'm just untrainable. It's like he went to acting school.

He used to jump up on a chair next to me, and be super-affectionate for around 10 seconds.

Then he would lock eyes with me for a moment, jump down and run to his scratch-box (where Becky gives him catnip 1-2 times per week).

Then he would turn, lock eyes again, scratch his box and yowl pitifully.

But no matter how clear and expressive he is, I just CAN'T be trained to give catnip on demand. Good help is so hard to get!

springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jun 3, 2016 12:06 PM CST
Sounds like he is tattling on you !

Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 3, 2016 12:21 PM CST
Not only that, but he uses his Massive Cuteness (TM) to get his way. I think he goes to Cat School at night to learn new, cute poses.

Both Becky and Toby agree that I'm UN-trainable.

Sighing! Shrug!

Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Jun 3, 2016 3:04 PM CST
RickCorey said:
Both Becky and Toby agree that I'm UN-trainable.

Sighing! Shrug!



Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing

Well, you ARE a guy, after all... Whistling

I have about 10,000 catnip plants coming up by the house, where a big plant that we let grow (why? because the cats wanted us to!) dropped seeds last year...

and, I think we have seriously digressed yet again and are about to be thrown into the litter box (ooops, I mean Sandbox)! Big Grin

"Blessed is he who has learned to laugh at himself, for he shall never cease to be entertained."
- John Powell / Cubits.org - A Universe of Communities
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Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 3, 2016 4:37 PM CST
Guilty as charged!

I AM a guy, we ARE untrainble, and we HAVE digressed.

Hmm, my spellchecker seems to think we've been de-greased.

Confused

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