March 17th kicks off National Animal Poison Prevention Week this year, urging pet owners to prioritize safety. Poisonings pose serious risks to our furry companions and can lead to unplanned vet visits. Thankfully, your nearby Richboro, PA vet offers practical advice to prevent accidents in this insightful article.


How Many Pets Endure Poisoning Every Year?


These numbers are cause for concern. Annually, more than 401,500 cases of pet poisoning are reported in the U.S.


Which Culinary Delights Spell Trouble for Pets?


It’s crucial to recognize that many foods loved by humans can be poisonous to our pets! Here’s what to avoid.


  • Alcohol
  • Many nuts, such as macadamia nuts
  • Scallions
  • Currants
  • Anything That Contains Xylitol (Birch Sugar)
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Chives
  • Raisins
  • Chocolate
  • Grapes
  • Junk Food
  • Caffeine


When in doubt, seek guidance from your Richboro, PA veterinarian for more information.


Which Everyday Household Objects Can Present Toxic Dangers for Dogs and Cats?


It’s astonishing to learn how many common household items can pose a deadly threat to your furry companion.


Cleaning Products: It’s safe to assume that all household cleaning products are hazardous to pets. Potentially harmful goods include bleach, disinfectants, furniture polish and oil, detergent, drain openers, mold killers, and other chemicals.


Automotive Products: Antifreeze is a leading hazard for pets, especially with its appealing flavors in certain products. While selecting a pet-safe option is prudent, it’s not a fail-safe solution. Gasoline, oils, paints, cleaners, and wiper fluids also present significant dangers. Ensure pets are restricted from chemical zones and promptly address any antifreeze or chemical spills.


Lawn/Garden Products: It’s troubling since pets can consume these substances effortlessly. Slug bait or snail bait is particularly hazardous to dogs due to the presence of Metaldehyde, a component found in various brands.


Keep in mind the risks associated with fertilizers, fungicides, weed killers, and herbicides. Pets can quickly gather these chemicals on their fur while walking through treated areas.


Which Plants Can Be Dangerous to Pets?


Pets often enjoy chewing on plants. That may seem adorable, but it carries a significant risk. Since it would be too lengthy to post here, we will just focus on a few of the most popular hazardous plants. For cats, lilies are the most troublesome. Even at very low dosages, they can be lethal to cats. All it takes for Fluffy to get sick is a small nibble on a leaf or a tiny sip of water. Sago palms are considered to be among the most hazardous to Fido.


Here’s a compilation of the toxic ones:


  • Widow’s-thrill
  • Rhododendron
  • Amaryllis
  • Common daisy
  • Irises
  • Holly
  • Tulips
  • Daffodils
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Dieffenbachia
  • Oleander
  • Hydrangea
  • Ivy
  • Birds of Paradise
  • Lilies
  • Cyclamen
  • Sago palm
  • Azalea
  • Lily of the Valley
  • Foxglove
  • Peonies
  • Aloë
  • Crocus
  • Hyacinth


By and large, anything with a bulb is regarded as unsafe for pets. This encompasses tulips, daffodils, onions, and garlic. For additional information on safe and unsafe plants, check the ASPCA website.


Remember, plants deemed non-toxic can still be risky. For instance, roses have sharp thorns that may cause severe internal injuries if swallowed. Reach out to your vet for further guidance.


Which Household Products Can Cause Harm to Pets?


Moreover, here are a couple more examples:


Pesticides: Be mindful of bug spray, rodenticides, and mouse or rat bait—products formulated to exterminate pests—as they can be dangerous to your furry friend. Many rodenticides contain warfarin, an anticoagulant that may cause severe, potentially fatal internal bleeding.


Also noted are flea and tick medications, deemed safe with proper administration. However, administering too much or giving an incorrect dosage could result in poisoning for your pet.


Medication: Being cautious to keep medications out of your pet’s reach is essential. Some of the most dangerous include aspirin, acetaminophen, and Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen. Ensure both over-the-counter and prescription medications are stored securely away from Fido and Fluffy.


Do Salt Lamps Pose a Potential Danger to Pets?


Indeed, they can be! Certain pets enjoy the taste of salt. Fluffy and Fido may develop a habit of licking the lamp, risking salt poisoning. Nevertheless, this shouldn’t discourage you from having a salt lamp; just ensure it’s kept out of your pets’ reach.


Are Poison Concerns for Cats and Dogs Similar?


Partly yes, partly no. Overall, both cats and dogs are prone to similar toxic substances. However, Fido and Fluffy’s distinct instincts and behaviors play a role. Cats, especially, may face elevated sickness risks from substances spilling on or touching their fur. Fluffy’s delicate skin and grooming practices make her susceptible to toxins. Cats can become ill from walking through pesticide-treated lawns and ingesting toxins while grooming. This risk also applies to dogs; Fido may ingest harmful substances by licking his paws.


Yet another dissimilarity? Dogs typically have a tendency to ingest or chew on almost anything they encounter. While some dogs outgrow this behavior after teething, others continue to be avid chewers well into their adult lives.


What Are Some Common Poisoning Symptoms in Pets?


The symptoms may differ based on the type and amount of poison ingested. However, there are some general indicators to watch for. These might include:


  • Collapse
  • Respiratory Issues
  • Irregular Heartbeat
  • Wobbling/Lurching Gait
  • Fever
  • Coughing
  • Internal Bleeding
  • Drooling
  • Seizure
  • Diarrhea
  • Excessive Urination
  • Excessive Thirst
  • Weakness
  • Abdominal pain
  • Twitching
  • Coma
  • Shock
  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy


Cats frequently withdraw when unwell, while dogs may exhibit signs of sadness. Additionally, you may notice unusual behaviors, such as grumpiness or clinginess.


Bear in mind that these indicators could be signs of diverse problems. If you observe anything unusual, contact your Richboro, PA vet without delay.


Are Essential Oils Okay for Pets?


Aromatherapy is a common practice in health and wellness for many. While pets can benefit, it’s vital to proceed with caution. The concentrated oils can pose risks. Cats, sensitive to chemicals, are particularly susceptible.


Outlined are some of the unsafe ones:


  • Citrus Oils
  • Pennyroyal
  • Ylang Ylang
  • Anise
  • Juniper
  • Wintergreen
  • Sweet Birch
  • Wintergreen
  • Clove
  • Pine
  • Peppermint
  • Cinnamon
  • Tea Tree Oil


Err on the side of caution; keep perfumes and oils away from your furry companion.


What Can Pose Toxicity Risks to Birds?


Extra caution is required for bird enthusiasts. Polly’s sensitive lungs are exceptionally delicate. Fumes that are safe or pleasant for us can be harmful to your feathered friend. This encompasses scented candles, incense, perfume, and air fresheners. Cooking fumes and aerosols are equally hazardous for birds.


What Actions to Take If My Pet Has Been Poisoned?


Quick action is imperative; your pet’s life could be at stake, so hesitation is not recommended.


The initial step involves contacting your veterinarian. If it’s after hours, consider reaching out to an emergency clinic. You can also utilize a pet poison hotline for assistance. The ASPCA can be reached at (888) 426-4435 among various options. (Note: charges may apply.) Fido or Fluffy will need prompt veterinary care, but it’s recommended to call ahead for preparation. You might also receive guidance on performing first aid, such as using hydrogen peroxide.


Adhere strictly to guidelines and avoid administering anything unless directed by your vet or a poison helpline representative. Incorrect actions could pose greater risks than taking no action.


Need assistance with your pet’s safety, health, or care? Reach out for support! Contact the Animal Hospital of Richboro today.