With Easter and Spring right around the corner, you are probably prepping Easter baskets with flowers and chocolates. And while lovely treats for humans, these can be potential hazards to our fur friends. Here are some easy safety tips to follow as the warmer weather heads are way!
Lilies are toxic to cats and can cause kidney failure – even the smallest amounts can be toxic so keep all Lilies away from plant eating kitty cats.
Just like string, dental floss, and tinsel, Easter Grass can cause vomiting and an intestinal obstruction – this can result in expensive, life threatening surgery.
Chocolate contains theobromine, a xanthine compound which is in the same family as caffeine and theophylline- and is toxic to dogs and cats. At low doses chocolate can cause vomiting and diarrhea. At higher doses it can cause a high heart rate, an irregular heart rhythm and seizures.
Fertilizers and Pesticides
N-P-K fertilizers (containing nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium salts) can cause mild gastro-intestinal upset, and also skin irritation on the paws. Fertilizers containing greater than 1% iron can cause iron toxicity if ingested by a dog.
Fleas, Ticks and Mosquitos
Fleas can cause skin irritation, allergic reactions and they can transmit tapeworms. Ticks can transmit many diseases. Mosquitos can transmit heartworm to cats and dogs, which can be fatal. All dogs and cats should receive topical monthly flea and tick prevention. It is very important to read product labels very carefully on all flea and tick medications as the misuse of such medications, particularly over the counter varieties, can lead to acute toxicity in pets. It is important never to use a dog product on your cat, or vice versa. The ingredient “permethrin” found in some dog medications, while perfectly safe for dogs can be lethal to cats even in very small doses.
Dogs can also have severe allergic reactions to insect bites this time of year. Common symptoms are a swollen face and hives. If left untreated, the inflammatory response can cause severe illness and respiratory distress.
Fishing Hooks and Lines
It is important to keep all fishing hooks away from your pet. They can get stuck in your pet’s mouth or paws. Fishing lines can cause an obstruction in your pet’s intestines.
Leashes, Tags, and Microchips
Remember to always keep your dog on a leash when they are outside. Make sure all leashes and collars fit appropriately for your animal, and are not too worn from usage. Keeping your dog on a leash can prevent them from being hit by a car or getting bit by another dog. Bite wounds are common emergencies; make sure to always keep your pets rabies vaccinations up to date. In addition, you should make sure your pets have tags on their collars with appropriate contact information in case they are separated from you. Microchipping is also a wonderful tool to ensure your pet is returned safely to you should they become lost or separated.