Many every-day used things in your houses can be dangerous for your pets. To protect your pet, simply take the same precautions you would with a child. Rodent poisons and insecticides are the most regular sources of animal poisoning; the following list of less common but potentially toxic agents should be avoided if at all possible:
Antifreeze contains ethylene glycol that has a sweet taste that attracts animals but is toxic if consumed in even small quantities. Pet owners should use safe antifreeze in their vehicles that contains propylene glycol (it is safe for animals if ingested in small amounts). Ethylene glycol can be found in snow globes that’s why you must keep them out of the reach of animals.
Cocoa mulch contains ingredients that can be deadly to pets if ingested. It has achocolate smell that is tempting to some animals.
Fertilizer and plant food can be fatal to a pet. Chemicals should be avoided especially if your pet spends a lot of time in the yard unsupervised. Biological ways should be found for your plants’ protection.
Cedar, pine and other soft woods release fumes that can be unsafe to small mammals like hamsters and gerbils.
Chocolate is poisonous to dogs, cats, and ferrets.
Salts used to melt snow and ice is irritant and can be poisonous if licked off. Your dog’s paws should be washed and dried as soon as the animal comes in from the snow. Another option is the use of doggie boots with Velcro straps.
Insect control products, such as the insecticides may be toxic to companion animals. Prescription flea and tick control products recommended from the veterinarian are much safer and more effective
Vapors from nonstick cooking surfaces and self-cleaning ovens can be deadly to birds. Always be careful when using any pump or aerosol spray around birds.
Human medications can all be venomous to animals. Keep medication in safe places not easily reached from your pets. Never leave your pills or ointments in a place easily accessed from your pet.
Remaining food such as chicken bones that can easy brake in sharp pieces can choke a cat or dog. Other human foods that should be kept away from pets are onions and onion powder; alcoholic beverages; yeast dough; coffee grounds and beans; salt; macadamia nuts; tomato, potato, and rhubarb leaves and stems; avocados (toxic to birds, mice, rabbits, horses, cattle, and dairy goats); and anything with mold growing on it.
Some common plants can be poisonous for your pet like azalea, geraniums, dieffenbachia (dumb cane), lilies, mistletoe, and philodendron, among others.
Rawhide doggie chews may be contaminated with Salmonella, which can infect pets and humans who come in contact with the chews. These kinds of chews should be offered to a pet only with supervision, as they can cause a choking danger as well.
Cord, fiber, rubber bands, and even dental floss are easy to ingest and can cause intestinal blockage or strangulation.
Toys with removable parts can cause a choking danger to your pet. Buy toys that are for pet use (no plastic parts, material animal friendly)
For more information about common household dangers, see The American Veterinary Medical Association’s Pet Owner’s Guide to Common Small Animal Poisons.
The HSUS recommends that pet owners use all household products with caution and keep a pet first-aid kit and manual readily available. The HSUS puts out a first-aid book in conjunction with the American Red Cross entitled Pet First Aid: Cats and Dogs. If all of your precautions fail, and you believe that your pet has been poisoned, contact your veterinarian or emergency veterinary service immediately. Signs of poisoning include listlessness, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle tremors, lack of coordination, and fever.
The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center operates a hotline 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 888-426-4435 for a fee of $45 per case. If you call, you should be prepared to provide the following information: the name of the poison your animal was exposed to, the amount and how long ago; the species, breed, age, sex, and weight of your pet; and the symptoms the animal is displaying. You’ll also be asked to provide your name, address, phone number, and credit card information.