Saturday, March 31, 2012

Pet Poison Awareness

"Hey, Mom, is our yard all safe for us to play in?"

March is Poison Awareness Month, with the third week being Poison Awareness Week (Happy 50th Anniversary to the Poison Prevention Week Council!) While this is the end of the month, Poison Awareness is something we all need to be vigilant about every single day of every month throughout the entire year. 
So let's use this annual reminder to double-check our pets' surroundings and keep them safe and healthy.

First and foremost, keep your vet's, veterinarian emergency hospital's, and poison control numbers up-to-date and readily posted by our landline phones and in our cell phones. And...Pet Poison Helpline now also has a "Pet Poison Help" iPhone app for just 99 cents!

With Easter just around the corner, please keep children's Easter baskets that are filled with yummy things for kids high up out of reach of the family pets. Chocolate, little plastic toys, button batteries in talking books, and basket grass are just a few things that can be harmful if ingested by your dog and cause a fun-filled day to turn into a medical emergency for your pet.

Please, always contact your  veterinarian in case of an emergency.
"How long does a safety check take?"
When conducting inspections, don't forget to take walks around the areas of your house, garage, yards, decks, porches, etc., wherever your pets may roam. In the warmer weather, hazards could include broken glass, bug and rodent repellents, fertilizers, bee nests, burning candles, hot BBQ grills, alcohol, plants, shrubs, antifreeze, pool chemicals, certain foods (see video & A-Z list of Pet Poisons below), medications, children's toys, balloons, household cleaning products, button batteries, and more. For more info, please visit Pet Poison Helpline/Animal Control Center's website, the ASPCA Poison Control Center, and the American Veterinarian Medical Assoication. For an A-Z list of Pet Poisons, visit VetSTREET.

Please take a few minutes to check out this very important video on Household Hazards from the ASPCA:

And ladies...don't forget your purses! Many dangers can be hidden inside our pocketbooks if left open or near where our dogs can get into it. It's critical to remember to keep our bags zipped up and well out of reach of our pets. Here is a great video from Veterinary Pet Insurance and Pet Poison Helpline going over the dangers that could be lurking in purses, including that seemingly innocent pack of sugarless gum:

Dangers could also be lurking in pants and coat pockets, so don't forget to empty out those pockets as well. Sometimes gum and hard candy (especially sugarless with Xylitol), medicine, cough drops, coins (choking hazard) are left in our clothes, which are then draped over furniture or tossed aside and either pets get into them, or the items could fall on the floor, where they can easily pick it up. 

...let's all all err on the side of caution...

Since we do not know for certain if foods or treats for our pets have been contaminated, let's all all err on the side of caution and be sure to wash hands thoroughly before and after handling of pet foods and treats to be sure no bacteria is spread to pet or human. According to
  • Before and after handling pet foods and treats, wash your hands for 20 seconds with hot running water and soap. (Tip: Sing “Happy Birthday” twice to time yourself.)
  • After petting, touching, handling, or feeding your pet, and especially after contact with feces, wash your hands for 20 seconds.
  • Wash hands before preparing your own food and before eating.
This is also a good time to check your pet's First Aid Kit to be sure it is complete and up-to-date. Visit the AMVA for a First Aid Kit checklist.

"Wooooo! Safe Yard. Check. Let's play!!!"
Being vigilant is not just for the month of March, it's an everyday necessity. A few minutes to review our pet's surrounding could inevitably safe their life and ensure that everyone has a safe and happy spring and summer.

* * * * * * * * * * *

If you haven't already, please hop on over to some of these other wonderful blogs, and be sure to tell them the FiveSibes™ sent you!


  1. ONe can never be too careful. the one that scares Mom the most is the gum. People are so careless about tossing their gum on the ground and who knows if it is the kind with xylitol. We pups can be very fast on the grag and chew.

    Woos - Phantom, Thunder, Ciara, and Lightning

  2. Uh, that was supposed to say grab and chew:)

  3. Those are some good tips! Especially to keep an eye out for what is in our purses!

  4. Momma does yard patrol with us almost every day. She picks up all sorts of little things and makes sure there are no sticky outy things anyplace too (like sometimes master leaves wood with nails in it outside - ouch).

    She is gonna try that happy birthday singing thing.


  5. Great info! Mom installed kid locks (tabs) on our kitchen garbage cupboards. Yeah I finally lost my restraint and opened it one day and chewed a small piece of bone. Next thing I know...locked up tight :( Sigh.

    Waggin at ya,

  6. Thanks for this informative post

    urban hounds

  7. this is an important post
    Benny & Lily

  8. I'm telling ya, ya really never know when you're gonna need this too. I came home one day and found an empty bag of chocolate on my kitchen floor. I didn't realize I'd left it on the kitchen counter and that a certain counter-surfer had gotten it and eaten it. Fortunately it wasn't enough to cause problems, but it could have been.

  9. Thanks for the reminder! This is a post that we should all take turns posting once a month because tese issues don't just occur in March or in Spring! We are double checking here.

  10. I had an encounter with some poison at my grandparents' house a couple years ago. Luckily Mom discovered it right away and made me throw up and then took me to the vet for some extra meds. Now Mom is extra careful when we travel.


  11. Such an important post!

    Big Nose Pokes
    The Thugletsx

  12. When I picked out the Easter basket spots for my 3 kids, I knew I had to have it high or in somewhere because of the chocolate. I had our older husky with me. He is my shadow. Falls me everywhere. But, Bolt (the puppy) sleeps downstairs at night & I did not want him to get into the baskets, which I knew he would. My 2 of my 3 kids did not think it would be inside something, but I had to remind them that Bolt can jump over the gate now so he could get the chocolate & be sick. They eventually found their baskets. I think I would had used Bolt to help me find the basket then rewarded him with a biscuit! Thanks for posting this. I want to go over this with my kids tonight after school. We already talked about most of this, but I want to do it again.