Health, My fur-babies
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Keeping pets safe


Keep Your Pets Safe!



This year, March 15-21 has been set aside to commemorate National Poison Prevention Week. Once again, it is time to highlight this annual event. While this is an excellent time to set aside to evaluate your home’s safety to protect you and your family, it is also the purrfect time to secure any poisonous items in your home so your pets are also out of danger. The ASPCA has provided some excellent information to remind pet owners about the common items in and around our homes which are highly toxic to our beloved fur friends. If you suspect that your pet has ingested any of these substances, call your vet immediately, or call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center’s 24-hour hotline at (888) 426-4435.

Common Painkillers and Anti-inflammatory Human Medications: Aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen and other NSAIDS are among the top ten toxic drugs that are in most of our medicine chests. Highly toxic to small animals, they can cause stomach and intestinal ulcers and can cause kidney damage in cats. Acetaminophen is another dangerous drug for both cats and dogs. Cats are particularly sensitive it, and it can cause damage to red blood cells, and in dogs can cause liver damage and destruction of red blood cells. It is imperative to keep all medications safely stored away in containers and cabinets inaccessible to pets.

 For a list of the top-ten medications toxic to pets, visit:

Medications prescribed for pets should also be stored safely. What is appropriate for your dog may not be safe for your cat. Do not treat your pet with any veterinary medication without consulting your veterinarian.

Human Foods: While giving our pets an occasional treat of “people” food now and again, caution should be exercised about which foods we can safely share. Grapes, raisins, some citrus fruits and avocado are some of the fruits that can cause serious problems for our pets. That tempting chocolate bar is fine for humans, but contains a large amount of methylxanthines and can cause serious digestive disturbances, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythms, excessive thirst and urination, tremors and seizures. Onions are toxic to both cats and dogs as it contains allyl propyl disulfide, which can lead to anemia because it causes red blood cells to rupture. It is present in garlic as well, but not to the same degree. When you are cooking with these ingredients care must be taken not to let pieces fall on the floor, where a hungry dog or cat might be tempted to consume it. Do not feed anything containing onions to pets.

Insectides and rodenticides: Insecticides and rodenticides should be used with caution. Most of them are highly toxic to pets, and need to be stored safely. Also do make sure that any flea products used are safe for your pet. Some of these products are dangerous. So do check with your vet prior to using them. Plants: Many common plants used in and around the home are azaleas, rhododendrons, sago palms, lilies, kalanchoe and schefflera. As they are highly toxic they should not be part of your horticultural planning, especially if your pets are permitted access to your yard. With Easter on the horizon, care needs to be taken to avoid Lilies. They are especially toxic to felines even in small amounts and can lead to kidney failure. For a list of the 17 most toxic plants to pets, visit: and for a more comprehensive list, visit:

Household Cleaners, chemicals: These are potential threats to your pet’s safety. Anti-freeze, one of the leading causes of pet poisoning should always be safely stored and out of reach of your pets. Never confine your pet in the garage. For more information visit: and

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