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Don't Poison Your Pet! Common Household Items such as Chocolate and Anti-Freeze Can Kill Your Dog or Cat!

Updated on January 27, 2014
Make sure your home is dog and cat friendly!
Make sure your home is dog and cat friendly!

It is a fact that most dogs (and some cats) eat just about anything they can get their paws on. I own three dogs and I firmly stand behind this statement! My dogs (especially my piggy Beagle, Penny) have been known to eat ants, old poop that they happen to find on the ground outside and yes, even the occasional pile of dirt. Don't ask me why….I guess these items simply taste good to them! Before you reach for the phone and call the "animal police" in order to file a complaint against me, I want you to know that my pets are very happy, well fed, and up to date on all medical needs (including their shots!).

Because many animals investigate their surroundings by using their mouths, it is very important that you keep dangerous household items out of your dog or cat's reach. Even if your house and yard are pet friendly, it is always a good idea to keep the number of the National Poison Control Center handy….just in case. I tell this to all of my friends who not only have pets, but children as well! Better to be safe than sorry, wouldn't you agree!?


The Complete Healthy Dog Handbook: The Definitive Guide to Keeping Your Pet Happy, Healthy & Active
The Complete Healthy Dog Handbook: The Definitive Guide to Keeping Your Pet Happy, Healthy & Active

If you own a dog...I suggest that you keep a veterinary guide handy! I reference mine all the time! It is full of great and helpful information.

Cat Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook, Fully Revised and Updated
Cat Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook, Fully Revised and Updated

Same goes if you have a cat! Keep a feline veterinary handbook available at home in case of an emergency!


Common Products That Are Dangerous!

Tobacco: First of all, you shouldn't smoke; however, I'll save the lecture for another day (or maybe another HUB!). Nicotine is one of the most powerful natural poisons. If you smoke, keep your cigarette and cigar butts out of Fido's reach! Though he most likely won't eat cigarette butts, it is best that you don't even give him the option! This also goes for pipe tobacco as well. Oh, and since many people drink alcohol when they smoke…no beer (or alcohol of any type) for Felix either.

Plants: Many household plants are poisonous if eaten by your furry friend. Plants such as Dieffenbachia (also known as Dumb Cane) and certain palms can make your dog and or cat very sick. Bunny Roo Beagle is a great pet website that has a list of poisonous plants that you may find helpful! Check it out!

Tobacco products can kill YOU and your dog!
Tobacco products can kill YOU and your dog!
Antifreeze can KILL your pet!
Antifreeze can KILL your pet!

Antifreeze: If you have heard it once, you've heard it a thousand times….antifreeze CAN KILL YOUR PET! Antifreeze has a sweet taste that animals LOVE. If your car leaks antifreeze, get it fixed so that there is absolutely no chance of your pet ingesting this deadly poison. It is also important that you keep extra antifreeze up high and out of your pet's reach…at all times! If you believe that your pet has ingested antifreeze, call the veterinarian…IMMEDIATELY!!

Chocolate: Though chocolate may be a delicious treat for YOU it is not a safe treat for your dog or cat! Chocolate contains a strong stimulant called theobromine and if eaten in a large enough quantity can be quite dangerous. It takes quite a bit of chocolate to poison a dog, however, only a small amount can kill a cat. Play it safe and keep the chocolate out of your pet's reach!

Insecticides: If you have a critter problem (think fleas, roaches, termites, etc) and need to use insecticides in order to get rid of them, ALWAYS remove your pets from your home before you do so. Insecticides (and their fumes) can make your pet very sick or even kill him. If you hire a pest control company make sure you tell them that you have pets so that they can use the appropriate chemicals. Many pest control companies now offer "pet safe solutions."

Medications: Though human medications may make YOU feel better they can KILL your dog or cat! It is also a good idea to keep your pet's medications out of their reach as well. Many of today's pet meds are made to taste appealing to your furry friend and as you know, they don't know when to stop when it comes to eating something yummy!

Keeping your pet safe from common household items is easy to do (just use a little common sense!).  Though a small piece of chocolate may seem harmless, just remember…that little piece of yummy goodness could kill your cat and make your dog sick! All it takes to keep your pets around for a long, long time is a lot of love, attention and a pet-safe home!

PS: Don't forget to read my HUB about keeping your pet safe during the holidays!

Keep your dog healthy! Keep poisons and harmful products out of reach!!!
Keep your dog healthy! Keep poisons and harmful products out of reach!!!


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    • Paulart profile image

      Paulart 6 years ago from 2510 Warren Avenue Cheyenne,Wyoming 82001

      Very nice information is given on this hub.

    • puppy576 profile image

      puppy576 7 years ago

      Great info to add. I've called that poison hotline before!

    • profile image

      Pet Poison Helpline 8 years ago

      Thanks for spreading the word on pet toxicities on your blog - so important for pet owners to be aware of the lurking household poisons in (and outside of) their house! As an ER specialist, I see so many toxicities that owners bring in too late (making it more expensive to treat, with a worse prognosis!). When in doubt, it's so important to call a Poison Control for peace of mind!

      I wanted to make you aware of another important resource out there also - Pet Poison Helpline is an additional Animal Poison Control Center, and it's one of the most cost-effective animal poison ($35/case vs. ASPCA's new $60/case) controls out there nowadays. Unfortunately, because animal poison controls are not federal- or state-funded, there is a fee to allow the service to be run 24-7. We provide a similar service, but have the added benefit of veterinary specialists (in internal medicine and emergency and critical care) as part of our staff. You can always call 1-800-213-6680 if you ever have a problem. Thanks for spreading the word!

    • elisabethkcmo profile image

      elisabethkcmo 8 years ago from Just East of Oz

      Great info, I have two cats and one dog, thanks!!