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Ask Well: The Problem With Dogs and Chocolate

By CATHERINE SAINT LOUIS. February 14, 2014.

Q: Does chocolate really hurt dogs?

A: It can, depending on their weight and how much they eat, so be vigilant this Valentine’s Day. Stimulants in chocolate can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, agitation and life-threatening elevated heart rates or seizures.

“Dogs have no off button,” said Dr. Tina Wismer, the medical director of the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. “If you or I ate 10 percent of our body weight in chocolate, we’d have the same problems. A 10-pound dog can easily eat a pound of chocolate.”

The darker the chocolate, the more toxic it is. For a 20-pound dog, 9 ounces of milk chocolate can cause seizures, but it takes only 1.5 ounces of baker’s chocolate, she said.

Signs of chocolate poisoning usually appear six to 12 hours after ingestion, according to The Merck Veterinary Manual.

“Seizures due to toxicity don’t stop unless you treat them,” Dr. Wismer said. So head to the emergency clinic or veterinarian if you come home to find your dog vomiting repeatedly and extremely agitated, and certainly if the pet is unconscious and its limbs are shaking. By contrast, dogs who vomit once and fall sleep can be watched at home, she said.

Unlike cats, dogs like sweets. So it’s best to keep chocolate stored away and off countertops, which are no match for a motivated climber.

Carob treats are a safe alternative for dogs who love the flavor of chocolate. Other common foods that pose hazards to dogs are raisins and grapes. Xylitol, used to sweeten sugarless gum, is also “a big problem” for a pet, Dr. Wismer said, “It actually drops his blood sugar, and he can have seizures.” Catherine Saint Louis

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The new class system for young Wall Street bankers

By KEVIN ROOSE. February 17, 2014.

imageL-R: The brand-new flunky, the overworked drone and The Boss are three of four classes of young finance workers.

When you’re a junior banker on Wall Street, you’re expected to learn a lot — what a “discounted cash flow model” is, and how to use an Excel macro. That when you order a “Bear Fight” at a bar in Murray Hill, you get an Irish Car Bomb, followed by a Jäger Bomb. And, perhaps most importantly, you learn your place in the pecking order.

Wall Street has always been obsessed with status and hierarchy. Dare to break rank? You might as well set your boss’ Hermès tie on fire. In 2012, when a disgruntled Goldman Sachs employee named Greg Smith exploded his career with a tell-all op-ed, in which he called the bank’s culture “toxic and destructive,” many Wall Streeters reacted by mocking the fact that, at age 33, Smith had only made it to vice president.

“Everyone’s always measuring their d – - ks,” one young financier explains. “If I’m a Goldman banker, I go up to a McKinsey consultant and I’m like, ‘My d – - k’s bigger than yours.’ ” The Goldman banker is then scoffed at by a Blackstone analyst, who in turn gets reamed by a Greenlight Capital portfolio manager.

During the three years I spent interviewing young Wall Street workers for my new book, “Young Money: Inside the Hidden World of Wall Street’s Post-Crash Recruits,” I saw fresh-faced recruits get taught where to live, how to dress, what to do after work and how to impress their superiors and move up the ladder.

The typical Wall Street food chain starts with interns, then moves up to analysts, associates, vice presidents, managing directors, partners and executives. “Front-office” investment bankers sit higher on the totem pole than “middle-office” compliance officers or “back-office” IT workers. And private equity and hedge fund workers command more respect (and money) than regular investment bankers.

The financial crisis of 2008 mixed things up a bit — for a few years, back-office workers were being promoted while front-office workers were being laid off. But now, five years later, the caste system has returned to normal — though, for junior bankers, some of the allure has faded due to shrinking bonuses and prestige. Some young guns came into the industry expecting Champagne and caviar but got Adderall and all-nighters instead. Here is what awaits them at every step:

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Robert Redford shot by Annie Liebowitz

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Robert Redford shot by Annie Liebowitz