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Eight Ways Your Home Might Be Poisoning Your Pet

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Did You Know Your Home Might Be Poisoning Your Pet?

When our pets get poisoned, we mostly tend to look at some external factors and neighbors, forgetting that the killer could be right in our homes. Every avid and responsible pet owner takes care of their pets and ensures that they are on the proper diet. However, sometimes your furry companions may want to test and taste some things around your home, which you may not know are lurking hazards to your pet.

According to a study conducted by WebMD, there are over 100,000 pet poisoning cases that are reported every year in the United States. Most of these cases are as a result of household poisoning. That means there are pet killers in your home that you don’t know. You can surely reduce the incidents of your pet poisoning by merely identifying the hazards in your house.

Some of the most common items in your household could be deadly and harmful to your furry friends. It is time to stop looking externally and focus on some items in your own home. Here are some of the ways your home may be poisoning your pet without your knowledge:

1. Through Artificial Sweeteners
According to petMD, artificial sweeter that are in some items we love like chocolates and candies are deadly to your dog and other pets. This artificial sweetener, known as Xylitol is very hazardous to your pet that it causes the level of blood sugar to decrease suddenly. This is because of the insulin level that it triggers in the body of the pet. Xylitol can also be found in toothpaste, gums, and mouthwash.

The United States Humane Society has a list of the toxic foods that you need to keep away from your pets. Some of the foods include walnuts, onions, and even grapes. Next time you are planning on showing your feline friend some love by buying him or her candy or chocolate, know you may be cutting short their life.

Xylitol usually manifests after 30 minutes or even after several hours. Your pet may start vomiting, showing signs of fatigue and tiredness or may appear uncoordinated. Sometimes the signs of this deadly artificial sweetener may take days before manifesting a physical symptom. Always keep such things from the reach of your pet to avoid poisoning.

2. OTC Medications
Just as some of the over the counter drugs are harmful and deadly to your children, so are they to your pets. You might be surprised to know that common acetaminophen is poisonous to your pet yet you have been leaving it exposed. All prescription medicines like ibuprofen, diet pills, and other supplement pills can cut short the life of your four-legged friend.

As little as two pills consumed by your pet, the effects can be devastating. Besides the OTC medications, ensure that your pet takes the right dosage of the veterinary pharmaceuticals. You also need to be careful of the other medicines in the house that is not meant for them.

The unfortunate thing about your pet taking OTC medications is that signs are not physically visible. Most of the effects happen internally like stomach ulcers, which you may not have the right skills or knowledge to identify. It is advisable to call a veterinary immediately you notice that the pet has ingested some medicine.

Every time you finish using specific medicines, always ensure that they are stored away in the right place. Never administer human medications to your pet or give your pet some veterinary pharmaceuticals meant for another animal.

3. Plants in your house
Well, you may call them decorative potted plants and flowers in your home but to your pet, they are fatal and deadly. Although such plants are essential in purifying the air in your house, they might end up harming your feline friend.

Some of these poisonous plants include aloe vera, daffodils’ bulb, devil’s ivy, Chinese evergreen, chives, tomato plant, mother-in-law’s tongue, rubber tree plant, hydrangea, cyclamen, philodendron, peace lily, asparagus fern, and poinsettia among others.

Just as these plants are attractive to your eyes, so they are to your pets hence they end up chewing them. It is good to note that not all lilies are poisonous to your pet, some of the most dangerous lilies include Easter, Japanese show, peace lily, Tiger lilies, among others. When your pet consumes any of these lilies, they will start vomiting, losing appetite, drooling, and having some pain in the mouth.

Some of the poisonous plants to your pet can be so hazardous that they cause some difficulties in breathing, swallowing, or forming red blood cells. Some can cause kidney failure and other fatal conditions. To find out all the poisonous plants in your home, visit the list of the toxic plants by the ASPCA. With this, you can replace a toxic plant with a safer plant.

4. Your Air freshener
This could be a shocker to you. Well, your pets could be dying because of the fresh, sweet-smelling air that you want to have in your home. This pleasant scent usually attracts pets, and unfortunately, they succumb due to the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the air freshener.

It is always advisable to keep away the plug-ins, essential oils, poisonous solids, and sprays if they contain VOCs. According to the report released by the Environmental Protection Agency, VOCs can cause throat, eyes, and nose irritation, nausea, cancer, headaches, damages to the nervous system and kidney in human beings.

Unfortunately, these air fresheners give some of these effects to your pets where they experience drooling, difficulties when breathing, irritation in their face, eyes, nose, hence you see them pawing at their face. To prevent all these adverse effects on you and your pets, be opening windows and doors to ensure the room is well-ventilated instead of using these air fresheners. You can also use an air purifier.

5. Batteries
Those batteries that your remote control and video games use can be hazardous to your pet. Whether you are using dry alkaline cells, disc-shaped or maybe lithium, their contents are dangerous. It can easily cause corrosive injuries that can be severe to the point of claiming the life of your pet.

Your pet may experience some abdominal pains, vomiting, mouth ulcers, and continuously pawing at its face. Never leave batteries on the floor or somewhere they can be easily accessed. Always store your remote control and other electronic devices that use batteries in a safe place from the reach of pets.

6. Rodent Poisoning
PetMD says that those products that are designed to kill rats and mice in your house contain anticoagulants that cause blood clotting. You can be sure when the blood clots in your pet, it cannot survive for long. Although some cats may be very sensitive, they don’t take any poisoned rat or mice, they might not be aware of the poisoned product itself since some appear like regular food.

You can quickly tell when your pet has taken rodent poison in that they experience bloody gums, labored breathing, nose bleeds, blood in the urine or stool. In such a case, call the vet as soon as possible to save the life of your pet.

It is advisable to keep the rodent poison in a very secure place like in a cabinet where the pet cannot find it. You can also decide to be using a trap instead of poison.

7. The antifreeze in your house
Most of the pets tend to be attracted to pleasant smells and flavors. That is what makes the antifreeze a hazardous and poisonous product in your house. As little as a few tablespoons, your pet will be in danger. After some minutes or hours of consuming this deadly product, your pet will be uncoordinated, dizzy, and disoriented. Antifreeze can quickly cause kidney failure, stomach ulcers, and even coma.

If you must have antifreeze go for the brands that contain propylene glycol which is less toxic compared to the brands that contain ethylene glycol. That doesn’t mean that your pets are completely safe. It is always advisable to store antifreeze in a safe place and away from the reach of your pets. It is advisable always to clean up and wipe properly any spills before your pet comes to lick it.

8. Fabric softeners
As long as we need our clothes to have a great scent, it may not be friendly to your pet. The sheets that you use to make the pet’s bed should never be washed using fabric softener. The sweet aroma makes the pet chew the cloth, and by that, they become poisoned.
Ensure that you also wipe any spilled fabric softener in the bathroom or the laundry area. That will help keep your pets safe.

Conclusion
Every pet owner hopes that the poisoning nightmare will never happen to their furry friends. However, the unexpected may happen to them; therefore, you need to keep yourself ready always. You should be aware of the most common symptoms and signs like lethargy, vomiting, seizures, drooling, weakness, loss of appetite, excessive urination, and diarrhea, among others.

Whenever you notice the above symptoms, it is a clear indication that your pet may have been poisoned. There are some medical emergencies that you must be prepared to deal with if the situation arises. Ensure that you have written the number of the family vet in a visible location, have the details of the affected cat or dog, have a first aid kit for the pet, track the symptoms, and always stay calm.

As a responsible pet owner, you can keep your curious kittens and puppies safe by knowing about the poisons in your home. Your vet can help you get rid of anything poisonous in your home.

( Photo credit: Bigstockphoto.com )

 

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