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Easter Pet-Safety Tips
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April 7, 2009, Volume 55, No. 28

Easter is coming up, so remember to take these simple precautions to ensure that your pets stay safe and healthy.

Don’t Let Your Pets Eat Chocolate
Chocolate is very popular this time of year but is potentially lethal to pets. Dogs can experience vomiting or diarrhea, hyperactivity, seizures and an abnormally elevated heart rate from eating chocolate. Cats can experience gastrointestinal upset if they ingest chocolate. In severe cases, animals can die from eating even a small amount of chocolate.

Put Alcoholic Beverages Safely Away
Be sure alcoholic beverages are not in reach of your pet. If your pet ingests alcohol, this could cause vomiting or diarrhea, lack of coordination, central nervous system, depression, tremors, difficulty breathing, metabolic disturbances and coma. Alcohol can even cause death from respiratory failure if a large enough amount is consumed.

Don’t Let Your Pets Eat Sugar Substitutes
Another potential hazard is gum or candy sweetened with artificial sweeteners, which, if ingested, can cause a rapid drop in blood sugar. This can result in depression, loss of coordination and seizures.

Keep Flowers Out of Reach
Flowers are another favorite choice to celebrate this special day. Many types of lilies are highly toxic to cats, so make sure they are completely out of cats’ reach. Other potentially poisonous flowers may include tulips, amaryllis, calla lily, daisies, chrysanthemums and baby’s breath. Safer alternatives include African violet, asters, camellia, jasmine and orchids.

—School of Veterinary Medicine

 

Almanac - April 7, 2009, Volume 55, No. 28