There are a lot of things in our household that pose a grave danger to our pets. For us, it may just be a normal substance or even a food item, but to our beloved companion, it may draw the line between life and death.
The best way to make certain our pals’ safety is to be educated about these kinds of threats. We have to know what items are toxic to them and make a conscious effort to keep these in a safe place. Pets are naturally curious and no matter how we discipline them, the risk of being poisoned is still going to be there.
Here are 5 common household items that may be normal to us, but can be life-threatening to our pets:
You may be keeping this at home as a treat to yourself but chocolates are poison to our pets, most especially to dogs and cats. It contains methylxanthines which is a chemical that contains theobromine and caffeine. Ingesting it can cause symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, muscle spasms, and seizures. This will eventually lead to cardiac arrhythmia and lead to death. We humans can consume chocolates normally because our systems can metabolize the chemicals quickly, unlike our pets that would take time to process it, making the symptoms more amplified and extreme.
To put it in more tangible figures, if a dog accidentally ate half a pound of milk chocolate, it is enough to put it in danger. However, just an ounce of Baker’s chocolate can be deadly. Chocolate Toxicity goes by, “the darker and bitter the chocolate, the more poisonous it is to pets.”
- Human Prescription Drug
Some pet owners self-medicate their companions using the medicine for humans. This is a perilous practice and, thus, should be condemned. The rule of thumb is to never give your pets the medicine that your veterinarian did not prescribe. Your ordinary over-the-counter drug like Ibuprofen or Tylenol can damage a dog’s gastrointestinal tract. It can also cause Acetaminophen poisoning that will induce trauma to the liver and lead to liver failure.
Some medications, especially those used to treat psychosis and anxiety, are hazardous to your pets. It is best that you keep all medicines in a child-proof capped bottle and placed them in an elevated part of your house.
Having plants can improve your home’s overall atmosphere. It can also make your dwelling area aesthetically pleasing. However, there are some plants that you should veer away from if you have pets. Sago Palm is one of them and perhaps the most toxic since every part of the plant is dangerous. It contains cycasin, a toxic agent that can cause severe liver failure in dogs. Tulips may also be decorative and attractive, but when animals dig up and ingest newly planted bulbs, they can be enough to cause depression and loss of appetite.
- Cleaning Products
Cleaning products are already a given. We all know that having our pets ingest these cleaning agents can automatically harm, if not kill them. What we tend to overlook is that majority of these chemicals can also cause severe allergic reactions even upon the slightest contact with our pet’s skin. It can also cause watery eyes, difficulty in breathing, and skin sores upon inhalation.
- Cigarette and Alcohol
Our vices can be a potential danger to our pets. Leaving them lying around our home can instantly spark curiosity in our dogs and cats. Because of the sweet taste, some dogs will lick our glass of beer or any area where your malt has been spilled. Alcohol intoxication can happen because of ethanol and hops, both present in this beverage. This can cause your pet to be disoriented, have muscle tremors, and seizures.
Second-hand smoke can cause lung issues in your pets. It can weaken and impair their immune system just like how it does to humans. Nicotine and fine dust particles resting on your pets’ fur can be ingested by them when they groom themselves and this can be a big problem.
Time is of the essence when your pet has been exposed to these dangerous household items or substances. Do not wait for further symptoms. It is best to call your local Pet Poison helpline to aid you in administering first-aid, better yet, rushing to the nearest veterinarian will be your best bet.