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There are a tremendous amount of everyday items that are poisonous or hazardous to your pets. If you are concerned that your pet has ingested a poisonous item, get them to your vet ASAP.
Some common symptoms that a pet may display if they have been poisoned: Vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, lethargy, loss of appetite, irregular heartbeat. Keep reading to see the list of common items that are hazardous to pets and what you can do if you think your pet has ingested something dangerous.
People Food Items that are toxic or could cause serious health issues:
Coffee and coffee grounds
Grapes & raisins
Items that use Xylitol (a popular sweetener in sugar-free items and some peanut butters)
Household Items that may be toxic or a choking hazard:
Antifreeze - It has a sweet smell that appeals to your pet
Prescription medication (anti-depressants, heart or blood pressure medication)
Over the counter medication (acetaminophen, ibuprofen, aspirin)
Flea medication (topical applications should not be ingested, improper dosing, dog specific meds should not be used on cats and vice versa)
Coins/loose change (choking hazard)
Lawn Care Products
In the case of rat/snail/insect poisons and lawn care products, even though you may not use them in your home, they may be encountered while out on a walk in your neighborhood, in a neighbors yard, or in a park. A rat that was poisoned at a different location may come into your yard. Your dog or cat can get poisoned by coming into contact with the poisoned rat. Always use caution but remove deceased animals as soon as they are discovered.
While there may not be an open container of antifreeze in your garage, there could be a puddle in the driveway, street, or garage left behind by a car. Don't let your pet drink from puddles in the street or gutter, as it can contain all kinds of dangerous and toxic substances.
Common Plants that are dangerous:
As mentioned above, even if these items are not being used in your residence, they still may be encountered when out and about in your neighborhood.
These lists are just a sampling, and this is in no way a complete or comprehensive listing of items that could harm your pet. If your pet ingests any of these items, call your vet, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Hotline at (888)-426-4435, or the Kansas State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital at (785)-532-5679, and be prepared to rush your pet to the vet. If you know what your pet ingested, make note of it and/or bring the package with you so the vet knows exactly what it is and can have a list of ingredients.
A few of the symptoms that may present themselves if your pet has ingested something toxic:
Loss of appetite
Irregular heart beat
Bleeding from orifices
Rash, irritation, burns, blisters
Lack of coordination
Vomiting, diarrhea, and lack of appetite may be results of eating poisons like paint, some toxic plants, or getting into trash.
Seizures, lack of coordination, lethargy, and other neurologic symptoms may be the result of ingesting aspirin, tobacco, anti-depressants, cleaning products, gas, alcohol, and insecticides.
Nosebleeds, bloody stool, anemia, and bruising may be indications the animal has ingested rat poison, snail poison, onions or garlic.
Heart issues like an irregular heart beat can be caused by prescription medications and some plants like oleander.
In case you fear your pet has been poisoned, here are some things you can do. It is important in all cases to act quickly.
Try to identify what it is the animal has ingested, the vet or emergency hot line will need this information to recommend next steps
Contact your vet, or if after hours, one of the hotlines listed below
Follow the directions provided
Take your pet in immediately for treatment
It may seem like the appropriate thing to do, but unless advised by a vet and specifically told to do so, do not induce vomiting. It may exacerbate the problem.
Always err on the side of caution. You know your pet best. If you fear your pet has ingested a poisonous substance, don't try to "wait it out" to see if the symptoms go away or get better. It is best to seek treatment ASAP and have a vet tell you there is nothing serious to worry about, than to wait un
The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) is your best resource for any animal poison-related emergency, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you think your pet may have ingested a potentially poisonous substance, call (888) 426-4435. A $65 consultation fee may be applied to your credit card.
The Kansas State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital offers a FREE 24-hour poison control hotline for pet owners as well as veterinarians. The vet teaching hospital asks for your patience when you call, as the person answering the phone may need to take a few minutes to consult with the vet on duty.
It is a good idea to keep information for both your normal veterinary office, and the nearest after hours emergency animal hospital handy, as you never know when an issue may arise.
Here is hoping you find these tips helpful and keep your pet safe!