Let’s face it pets play a huge role in our lives and are honorary furry family members who we love to spoil. Just as parents child proof their homes, so should pet parents. Like infants and little children, pets are curious by nature. Dogs and cats love to explore and investigate their environment using their paws, claws and mouth. Unfortunately, pets don’t always intuitively know what can be potentially harmful to eat, drink or chew. So it is up to us as loving pet owners to get down on all fours for a pets eye view. Seeing the world from our pets point of view will make sure our homes are a safe haven for our adorable furballs to roam and enjoy.
While you can’t prevent any and every danger, you can minimize the possibility of your pet getting hurt or sick by always being aware of their surroundings. Before you can begin to pet proof your home remember that knowledge is power! You need to be aware of dangers that should be avoided and out of paws reach. Our wonderful pet loving friends at the ASPCA have compiled an extensive list of common household items that pose a threat to your pet.
Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pet
- Alcoholic beverages
- Chocolate (all forms)
- Coffee (all forms)
- Fatty foods
- Macadamia nuts
- Moldy or spoiled foods
- Onions, onion powder
- Raisins and grapes
- Yeast dough
- Products sweetened with xylitol
Warm Weather Hazards
- Animal toxins—toads, insects, spiders, snakes and scorpions
- Blue-green algae in ponds
- Citronella candles
- Cocoa mulch
- Compost piles Fertilizers
- Flea products
- Outdoor plants and plant bulbs
- Swimming-pool treatment supplies
- Fly baits containing methomyl
- Slug and snail baits containing metaldehyde
Common examples of human medications that can be potentially lethal to pets, even in small doses, include:
- Pain killers
- Cold medicines
- Anti-cancer drugs
- Diet Pills
Cold Weather Hazards
- Liquid potpourri
- Ice melting products
- Rat and mouse bait
Common Household Hazards
- Fabric softener sheets
- Post-1982 pennies (due to high concentration of zinc)
- Christmas tree water (may contain fertilizers and bacteria, which, if ingested, can upset the stomach.
- Electrical cords
- Ribbons or tinsel (can become lodged in the intestines and cause intestinal obstruction—most often occurs with kittens!)
- Glass ornaments
Non-toxic Substances for Dogs and Cats
The following substances are considered to be non-toxic, although they may cause mild gastrointestinal upset in some animals:
- Water-based paints
- Toilet bowl water
- Silica gel
- Cat litter
- Glue traps
- Glow jewelry
As always, if you suspect your pet has ingested something poisonous around the house please contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) at (888) 426-4435.
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