Hazards to Your Pets

There are many common things we use day to day that we consider essentially benign. Many people are unaware that these things can quickly kill our pets. The list included here are not complete but they begin to give you and idea of items and situations to look out for. At the bottom of this page is information about Pet First Aid and CPR.

At any point in time if you feel your pet had ingested a toxic substance or is in any potential danger, call a veterinarian or Animal Poison Control immediately! Do not wait to see if they show symptoms of illness because by that time it is often too late to help them! There is a charge of around $55 to call Poison Control, but is charged to you no matter who calls (even your vet!). It is money well spent in an emergency.

Some numbers to keep on hand in case of an emergency (program them into your cell phone!):

  • Your veterinarian

  • Your local 24 hours emergency veterinary service (if your veterinarian does not
    offer this service)

  • Animal Poison Control Center - 1-888-426-4435 - $55 per case

Household Items

  • Human Medications (unless prescribed by a veterinarian) such as Advil and Tylenol are toxic even in very small doses.

  • Insect repellants, traps and pesticides

  • Rat/mouse bait/poison

  • Bleach, disinfectant, cleaning products, laundry detergent and fabric softeners

  • Lighter fluid, solvents, paint thinners

  • Flea/Tick products (especially over the counter products!) if used incorrectly or ingested in various quantities

  • Antifreeze, even in very small amounts!

  • De-icing salts

  • Compost

  • Gasoline, oil and automotive supplies

  • Batteries

  • Cocoa mulch and fertilizer

Household Plants (there's a lot!)

Aloe, Amaryllis, Andromeda Japonica, Australian Nut, Autumn Crocus, Azalea, Belladonna, Bird of Paradise, Bittersweet, Black Locust, Branching Ivy, Buckeye, Buddhist Pine, Caladium, Castor Bean, Ceriman, Clematis, Cordatum, Corn Plant, Cycads, Cylamen, Daffodil, Dieffenbachia, Dumbcane, Easter Lily, Elephant Ears, Eucalyptus, Ferns, Gold Dust Dracaena, Florida Beauty, Foxglove, Gladiolas, Golden Pathos, Heavenly Bamboo, Honeysuckle, Hurricane Plant, Hyacinth, Hydrangea, Iris, Ivy, Jeruselem Cherry, Jimson Weed, Kalanchoe, Lantana, Lilies, Marble Queen, Morning Glory, Mother-in-law, Mountain Laurel, Narcissus, Nephthysis, Nightshade, Oleander, Panda, Philodendron, Poison Hemlock, Precatory Bean (Rosemary Pea), Privet, Red Emerald, Rhododendron, Ribbon Plant, Sago Palm, Satin Pathos, Schefflera, Striped Dracaena, Tulips, Water Hemlock, Wisteria, Yew, Yucca

Dangerous Foods

  • Avocados

  • Chocolate (all forms contain Theobromine, but the darker the chocolate the higher the concentration so the higher the danger)

  • Coffee (and all caffeinated products)

  • Onions and Onion Powder

  • Garlic and Garlic Powder

  • Grapes and Raisins

  • Macadamia Nuts

  • Alcoholic Beverages

  • Moldy/Spoiled Food

  • Salt

  • Fatty Foods

  • Foods with Xylitol (this an artificial sweetener found in many "sugar free" gums and candies)

  • Tea Leaves

  • Raw and Rising Yeast Dough

  • Cooked Bones

More Objects With Potential For Harm

  • Balls or toys that are small or have a smooth outer coating

  • Bread Twist Ties

  • Buttons

  • Coins

  • Cotton Swabs

  • Glass

  • Hair Accessories

  • Jewelry

  • Nylons

  • Socks

  • Underwear

  • Rubber Bands

  • Knives, razors, pins, needles, etc

  • String and Yarn

  • Dental Floss

  • Towel and Blanket Shreds

  • Wax and Candles

Locations With Potential For Harm

  • Balconies

  • Upper Story Windows

  • Bath Tubs

  • Toilets

  • Hot Tubs

  • Pools

  • Fireplaces (indoor and out)

  • Washers and Dryers

  • Electrical Cords

  • Open Doors

  • Open Gates

  • Unsafe Fencing

  • Deck Lattice

  • Hot Stove Tops

  • Outdoor Grills

  • Items on Counter tops

Holiday Hazards

January: New Year's Eve/Day. Fireworks and alcoholic drinks are the biggest concern here. Protect your pets from being exposed to happy party goers by boarding them if you are hosting a party.

February: Valentine's Day. Many flowers and chocolates are toxic to pets. Fancy dinners are nice for us, but keep the fatty meats and sweets away from pets.

March: St. Patrick's Day. Remember, your dog does not want to drink green beer! It is very bad for them!

April: Easter. Fake grass, plastic eggs, chocolate and pets do not mix well! The other dangerous thing for animals is being given as a gift in an Easter basket. They are all cute as babies, but they grow up and still need to be cared for. If you do not want a chicken, duck or rabbit, do not give a chick, duckling or bunny as a gift!

May: Memorial Day. Festive parties are great for us to welcome Summer, but pets should be protected from being accidentally let loose or being fed foods from the grill!

June: Graduations and Summer Cookouts. Same as above

July: Fourth of July. Fireworks are often terrifying to pets. If there are fireworks in your neighborhood and your pet is concerned by them, board your pet in a safe boarding kennel.

August: Summer Parties. Same as May and June. Keep your pet safe to prevent summer tragedies!

September: Labor Day and back to school. Keep your pet safe and contained during parties and don't forget the stress they may experience after having company all summer to now being alone all day. Consider doggie day care or a mid day dog walker.

October: Halloween. This can be a very frightening time for pets with all of the commotion of people coming to the door. That and the people at the door are very scary looking! If your dog is not comfortable around strangers or children make sure you bring them to a kennel! Afterwards, make sure your dog does not get into the leftover chocolates.

November/December: Thanksgiving, Christmas and Hanukkah. As tempting as it is, do not share holiday dinners with your pets. Rich foods can make your dog very ill. Also, be very careful with holiday plants, electrical cords, candles, pine needles, your holiday tree and ornaments.

Finally, Stress and Company:

Throughout all of your fun, please do remember to look out for your pet's well being. With everyone coming and going remember to watch out for open doors that pets may escape through. Ask guests to keep an eye out for pets underfoot and not to feed them. Remember that even the most friendly pet may need an escape from the excitement and chaos and may be stressed by many people crowding them. Do not hesitate to remove your pet to a quiet room with a favorite toy if they do become overwhelmed before there is a problem! If your pet is generally nervous, fearful or aggressive towards strangers, make sure to make kennel reservations well in advance (holidays often book up one to two months out!).

Pet CPR and First Aid:

Why is it important to know CPR and First Aid for pets?

Have you ever heard a pet owner crying hysterically over their severely injured fur baby, or even stopped breathing? What if you could of helped to prevent a loss or assisted with an injury? A little education and knowledge can go a long way. It could even save a life.

Here are a few good tips to remember:


1. Determine whether the animal is breathing. Look for normal breathing movements of the chest listen carefully with your ear close to the animals mouth or place a small mirror close to the mouth and nostrils and see if it fogs up. Then:

  • If it is breathing, pull the tongue out to one side of the mouth and clear the airway. The more regular the breathing, the better.
  • If there is no sign of breathing then:

2. Feel for a pulse. The best way to do this is to feel for pulsing of the femoral artery which is located about midway along the inside of the thigh high up the leg (groin area).

3. If there is a pulse, start artificial respiration and continue to monitor the pulse.

4. If there is no pulse, start CPR.

When giving CPR to an animal, give 5 compressions per breath if under 90 lbs. If over 90 lbs, give 10
compressions per breath

First Aid:

1. Always have your information ready for an emergency including your own name, address and phone numbers. Your emergency contact person's numbers, in case you are incapacitated. The name, age, breed, sex,identification (such as microchipping information), and any health problems (especially useful information if your pet sitter or emergency contact needs to call an emergency medical service about your pet).

2. Normal temperature for dogs and cats is 100-102.5 degrees. If you find the temperature of your pet is very different from this get him/her to the veterinarian immediately.

3. At the minimum, a First Aid kit should include:
Pet Information Labels, Exam Gloves, Pet First Aid Guide, Scissors, Tweezers, muzzle, Antiseptic Wipes, Gauze Roll, Bandage, Gauze Pads (small), Gauze Pads (large), Heavy Trauma pad, Food, Blanket, Leash,Water, Collar, Poop Bags, cold pack, Cotton Tip Applicators, Providone Iodine, Insect sting relief pads, Antiseptic towelettes, Antibiotic Ointments, Tape Roll, Sterile Eyewash, Hydrogen peroxide, Roll Bandage(small), Roll Bandage(large), Digital Thermometer, Water-proof Organizer to hold items.

For more information contact Sarah Oglesby at (480) 232-4756 or visit us on-line at