Poison Prevention Week

The third week of March is always Poison Prevention Week across the country, and for good cause! Vets and emergency clinics get thousands of calls year round from panicked pet owners whose beloved fur friend ingested something toxic. As they say, an ounce of prevention can prevent a bucketful of regret. Or something wise like that.

So, read these quick tips so you can avoid a midnight trip to the doggy ER!

  • Know the NO-GO foods for dogs: Chocolate, raisins and grapes, and Xylitol (sweetener used in candy, gum, mints). A few more human food items can cause big problems for your pup: macadamia nuts, garlic, onions, yeast-based dough and salt.
  • Don’t give your dog any medications or supplements unless prescribed FOR that pet. This means no cat meds, no human meds and no vitamins either!
  • Keep all meds and supplements out of dog’s reach. You don’t want to be surprised at how your dog was able to jump up on your nightstand and chew through your sleeping medication! Assume that if it’s in view and your dog can jump to it, he or she may just tear into it one day.
  • Our homes are full of cleaning agents, and just like children, dogs can be curious and these products also need to be stored up high or locked away.
  • Don’t forget bait for household pests whether it’s in a trap or sprayed. These powerful pesticides can do major damage if ingested by dogs too!
  • Bufo toads – Living in South Florida we are particularly familiar with large bumpy Bufo toad that sprays a poison and often can kill a small dog and make a large dog very sick! They mostly come out at night so keep your eye on your dog at night if they are out walking or in a yard where a Bufo could sneak in. You may not see the encounter BUT if you’re out at night and your dog starts foaming at the mouth and/or looks dizzy chances are high he licked a Bufo! If your dog encounters one call the ER right away and wipe out his mouth with a small towel. Hosing water into the dog’s mouth could actually push the poison further down into their body.
  • Plants – There’s actually a whole host of plants that cause problems if ingested by your pup. Did you know tomato plants, aloe, and tulips are on that list. If you have indoor plants OR and outdoor garden click over to this list to read more!
  • Lastly have a nearby emergency vet’s phone number posted in a clear spot. They can give you some fast tips to minimize the impact of the situation but will almost always tell you to bring him in.

You’ve got this, just reading to the end of these tips has put you ahead of the game. Nicely done dog parent!