EMERGENCY vets who saved a pet pooch’s life after he wolfed down a kilogramme of mini eggs are warning dog owners not to let their hungry hounds near chocolate this Easter.

Basil the basset hound was rushed to Vets Now, in Witham, after becoming seriously ill.

The chocolates had been ordered online and when they were delivered Basil didn’t waste any time in ripping them open and scoffing the lot.

But soon afterwards, the five-year-old basset hound became seriously ill and his owners came home to find he had been violently sick all over their house.

His condition worsened that evening, forcing his owners to rush him to Vets Now.

Owner Aimee Manley said: “When my husband Andy got home he saw that Basil had been sick everywhere, but we made the mistake of thinking that once he had thrown up it was a case of keeping an eye on him while he recovered.

“His heart rate was elevated and despite all the water he’d had he was badly dehydrated – we thought he was going to die.

“Our postman had always left our parcels outside our gate, but he retired and the new chap had put this parcel inside the gate.

“Basil and his twin, Chester, have the run of the garden during the day because we have a dog door and he found the box, ripped it open and ate the eggs.

“Chester is not really bothered by food and rather idle, so he was happy to leave ripping the box apart to Basil.

“Thankfully Basil is a big chunky Bassett because if he had been a small dog he would not have survived eating that much chocolate.

“I have got a big sign on the gate now about where to leave parcels and I will never order anything edible online again.”

Witham vet Chloe Delimal treated Basil and her good work means he is now recovering from his ordeal at home.

She said: “Chocolate is toxic to dogs because it contains a chemical called theobromine which can act as a heart stimulant which explains the distress Basil was under.

“Vets Now see a big rise in cases of chocolate poisoning in dogs over Easter.

“Aimee is right to emphasise that if your dog eats chocolate it is not simply a case of seeing if they vomit it up.”

She added: “The side-effects can be very serious so it is best to get advice from a vet as quickly as possible.”