Pet Poison Prevention – Protecting our Pets

Pet Poison Prevention Month

Protecting Our Pets From Poisoning

As a pet parent you’ve probably heard over and over again the dangers your pet should avoid. Ask any dog parent what your dog shouldn’t consume and the first thing that usually comes to mind is chocolate. But what about other dangers we as pet parents must be made aware of?

March is Pet Poison Prevention Month, and on this episode of Vet Chat, Dr. Ryan Llera discusses how we can help keep our pets safe, what to watch out for, and what our pets should avoid consuming.

Dr. Ryan Llera

March is Pet Poison Prevention Month!

One of the most important things Edie & I want for your pet is to be healthy and safe. We hope almost everyone knows about chocolate, rat poisons, and antifreeze so we’re going to focus on some seasonally relevant toxins or ones that might seem obscure. Remember, this is not a replacement for getting your pet seen by your veterinarian if you suspect they have been poisoned, but is more to help you pet proof your home & yard.

 

Pet Poison Prevention - Protecting our Pets

Avoid all products containing Xylitol for your pet

Xylitol has been in the news in recent years for its prevalence in sugar free chewing gums and even a few brands of peanut butter. To be blunt, xylitol is really bad. Within 30 minutes of ingestion, your pet will get low blood sugar which if dangerously low can cause seizures. Liver failure signs can be seen within 24 hours. Recently though, xylitol has found its way into toothpastes, multivitamins, some gels/lotions, and nasal sprays to name a few products.

Pet Poison Prevention - Protecting our Pets

Be careful what you plant in your garden

Spring & summer time is coming!

What does that mean? Longer walks, swimming, BBQ cookouts…oh wait, that’s my plans for the summer. Back to poisons. Spring and summer mean gardening. While the fresh air is good for your pet, some of those plants and products you might use can be deadly. Many plants can just cause some mild signs of vomiting, diarrhea, or drooling. More serious problems can develop such as kidney failure in cats that eat lily plants and fatal heart or liver problems from tulips, foxglove, yew and rhododendron, among others. A great resource to check before planting your garden is the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center plant list.

Other items you might have in your garden or around the home you might not realize are serious poisons: slug or snail baits cause intense seizures and hyperthermia, many fertilizers can cause gastrointestinal irritation, and insecticides which may cause GI problems, trouble breathing, or seizures.

Pet Poison Prevention - Protecting our Pets

Consult with your veterinarian about Prescription and Over the Counter Drugs

Over the counter or prescription drugs are always a risk and should never be left within reach or given without consulting your veterinarian.

Pet Poison Prevention - Protecting our Pets

Avoid Alcohol and Table Scraps

Most summer gatherings also have alcohol, which should never be shared with your pet…believe me, I’ve seen it happen.

Home should be a safe place for your pets. There’s never a bad time to puppy or kitten proof the home. When in doubt about something your pet may have eaten, don’t hesitate to ask your veterinarian. Many times, they can counsel you on whether or not your pet needs to be seen at the clinic or if they can be watched at home. Another great resource is the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center which has a comprehensive website and also a call in hotline.

 

Dr. Ryan Llera is a small animal veterinarian at the Kingston Veterinary Clinic in Kingston, Ontario. Though originally from Florida, he married a Canadian (who is also a vet!) and they share their home with 3 cats, 2 dogs, 2 horses, and a rabbit. Ryan is also a regular guest writer for the Ontario SPCA blog. You can find more of his writing at drryanllera.com or see what else he is up to on Facebook & Twitter.

Author: Kelly Harding & Edie The Pug

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22 Comments

  1. Such great reminders! We just did an event where we gave away a magnet with some common foods that are bad for pets…..this makes me want to expand on that giveaway!

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    • What a fantastic idea! A magnet that could be placed for all to see in the kitchen to keep us aware of what foods could be harmful to our pets.

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  2. Great information and reminders. It’s amazing and scary how many things are poisonous for our fur children.

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    • There are so many things we need to be aware of to keep our pets safe.

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  3. Excellent reminders! We get so excited about Spring we forget about all the potential hazard’s, especially in the garden!
    Love & biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

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  4. Thanks for these important reminders. I am constantly checking to make sure I don’t have anything poisonous that my pets could get into. I finally gave up gum because the risk wasn’t worth it.

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  5. THanks for the reminders. It’s especially important to keep medications and medicine bottles out of the way of pets. They can easily be chewed through!

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  6. We had a few scary times with our previous dog. He was SO FAST and would grab anything that fell off the counter and I mean anything. We had to watch him like a hawk and we had a few close calls with grapes and eggplant. Thankfully, we acted quickly and he was OK.

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    • They can grab something so quick! I’m happy you were able to react quickly and he was ok.

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  7. Thank you for including lilies. I have seen some desperately sad stories about cats and lilies and until we started getting adopted by cats I HAD NO IDEA!!!!!!!

    Ours cats are very particular and rarely get anything from the table (but they always know when we have fresh New Zealand salmon * sigh* )

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    • I wasn’t always aware of lilies either! We have two cats; one of them doesn’t bother with anything, now the other is a different story! I’ll never forget the day we found him on the dinning room table, head first inside a cake! Can’t turn your back on them for one minute!

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  8. Great post, and I think it is so important for all of us to share and remind others, I always say rather be safe than sorry

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  9. Great post! This is a good time of year to keep dangers front of mind. Thanks for sharing!

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    • I won’t allow anything in the house that contains xylitol. It truly scares me!

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  10. Such important information to share not just for this month but always. It’s amazing to know that there are every day things around the house that could be harmful to our pets. We need to be more aware.

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    • Yes, safety is something we must be aware of on a daily basis not just once a month each year.

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  11. Great list! I didn’t know about the lillies thing until this Spring. Thankfully, my dogs aren’t ones to eat things they find around the house, but it can’t hurt to be extra careful! Thanks for sharing 🙂

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  12. These are great reminders. With three dogs, we are always “dog proofing” our home. Especially our daughters, it so important that they whole family knows the dangers that every day household items can pose for the dogs. Thanks for sharing!

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    • Thank you so much for these reminders! Sharing!

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      • Thanks so much for sharing!

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