Common Household Items That Are Poisonous to Your Pets

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Every year in March, we take a week to bring awareness to the poison hazards that can harm our four-legged friends. National Animal Poison Prevention Week for 2019 is March 17– 23, and to recognize this, we’ve pulled together a list of common household items that are poisonous to your pets.

If you have these in and around your home, make certain they are put away or placed where your pet can’t get access to them. Some of these may seem like common sense, while there may be others that will surprise you. Always keep in mind that humans and animals have very different systems, and if you’re uncertain if something is unhealthy, consult with your veterinarian.

In the event your animal ingests something that is considered poisonous, immediately contact the ASCPA’s Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435.

Things that are poisonous to your pet include:

  • Cleaners and chemicals: This one should be obvious, but sometimes when we’re in a hurry, we may leave doors open or cleaners out. Be aware that many of the most common household cleaners and detergents contain chemicals that can be appealing to pets or even sweet tasting to them. Always make certain that these items are kept closed away or in sealed containers that are inaccessible to your pets.
  • Plants: Plants are natural, therefore they must be okay for a pet, right? Not so fast! There are a great number of household and garden plants that can cause serious illness and even death. Some of the most common are chrysanthemums, lilies, aloe, shamrock, mistletoe, azaleas, English ivy, daffodils, tulips, hydrangea, tomatoes and rhododendron. This is just a short list of what can cause harm to your pets. To view a comprehensive list, visit the Poisonous Plants page on the ASPCA site here or read our blog post on this topic here.
  • Household items: Be on the lookout for these items that are toxic to pets and make certain they are secure: batteries, glue, fertilizer, insecticides, liquid automotive products, petroleum jelly and essential oils.
  • Medications: It should go without saying that human medications should never be blindly given to a pet. Seemingly innocuous medications like ibuprofen and acetaminophen are can be especially toxic to animals. Never give your pet any sort of medication unless directed to do so by your veterinarian. Also, be aware of where you store your pet meds. Since these are typically made to be tasty so pets will take them, there’s a danger of your pet getting into them, thinking they are a bag of treats, and overdosing.
  • Drugs, Alcohol & Cigarettes: No joke. Alcohol can have a sweet taste, which is tempting to animals, but of course the alcohol itself can cause great harm. Additionally, be wary of how you dispose of cigarette butts as the nicotine can sicken your pet, and if you live where marijuana is legal or have medicinal marijuana, be mindful of where you store it.
  • Foods: These are the most common foods that can be poisonous to your pets if ingested – chocolate, green tomatoes, mushrooms, turkey, coffee grounds, grapes, raisins, garlic, onions, macadamia nuts, avocados and anything containing xylitol.

The items listed above represent a portion of what is around your home that could potentially be toxic to your pet. If you are the type of person who likes to be prepared, the ASPCA has an Animal Poison Control Center mobile app you can download where you can search to see if something is potentially hazardous to the animals in your house.

We care about your pet’s wellness. In honor of Poison Prevention Awareness, Total Veterinary Care is offering 20% off your initial visit for all new pet patients during the month of March. And should your pet ingest something and you’re unsure if it could cause them harm, bring them in promptly so that we can help ensure they remain healthy and happy.


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