Our homes contain many household items that make our day-to-day tasks easier and our meals tastier. Unfortunately, these items don’t always bode well with our pets. In an effort to help raise awareness for National Poison Prevention Week, the Precise team has complied some tips to help keep your pets safe from household toxins.
Identify Household Toxins
Your home is filled with items that are safe for human use, but could be fatal for your pets to get their paws in. From basic household cleaners such as window solutions, dishwashing soaps, and bleach; to prescription medications; plants; and even some of our favorite foods, like grapes, garlic and chocolate, are all incredibly dangerous for pets to consume. Both cats and dogs have different tolerances for these items. For example, if a cat were to ingest even one or two lily leaves, it could result in kidney failure, whereas a dog might not have the same reaction. Now that spring is around the corner and gardening season will begin, it’s also important to note seasonal toxins to be aware of.
Poison Proof Your Home
The list of animal toxins is long and intimidating, but there is a way to help prevent your pet from falling victim to poisoning by proofing your house. Your pet is constantly watching what you’re doing. As you pull a piece of chocolate form it’s wrapper, your pet wants a taste of the action. It’s important that you take simple steps to make sure that your pet’s curiosity doesn’t get them in trouble. For example, make an effort to keep all hazardous items in secure cabinets or in high places that your pet can’t reach. Make sure medications and cleaners are tightly sealed and stored away. Also, ensure that the plants you purchase for your home are nontoxic.
Know the Signs of Poisoning
If your pet’s curiosity gets the best of them when you’re not watching, you will notice various changes in their behavior. Vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, lethargy, and loss of appetite are obvious signs that something is not right. There are also symptoms that can occur which aren’t so obvious, such as irregular heartbeat, blood in the stool and bruising.
Have a First Aid Kit Ready
If you notice any of these signs, call for help immediately. While you wait for further instruction from poison control or your veterinarian, an added step of caution would be to have a first aid kit at-the-ready. Your kit can contain items such as gauze, adhesive tape, cotton balls, peroxide, ice packs, scissors, tweezers, antibiotic ointment and more. Talk with your vet before utilizing the kit on the best practices to help comfort your pet before help arrives. Check out this video from the ASPCA for more information on how to create a first aid kit.
Keep these tips in mind as you use the household items mentioned above. Be sure to store these items in a safe place where your curious pet cannot reach them. If you believe your pet may have gotten into something they shouldn’t have, be sure to call your veterinarian or the pet poison helpline immediately.
Pet Poison Helpline #: 855-764-7661
*Note: This helpline costs $59 USD per incident