Category Archives: Poisonous and Toxic Things to Pets

May Your Holidays Be Merry (Not Sad) Be Careful and Watchful For the Welfare of Your Pet. Original post 12/21/2011 Repost

Dog Puppy 037

Puppy. Border collie (smooth) and Australian shepherd cross. Photo taken about 2013.


I posted this about six years ago.. This is a repost at the request of Da al. this post.  She has my permission to reblog. Please excuse any typos. I have not been in the best mood of late since I had Beasley, the cat, “put down” this past Saturday. A week ago I had my pit bull, Lucky (14 years old approximately) euthanized. So the loss of two pets in a week is a bit much. But I am ok.

A time for many to celebrate but if your pet eats or chews on something that is toxic or that can cause real harm to the animal’s body then there isn’t much to be happy about. There are so many things that are deadly or can make your pet sick that this list, as I type sort of makes me feel ill.

So on with the warnings- do not take this information idly. These are real hazards.

1. Christmas trees that are real and in a container of water: the water can become toxic just from the tree which leaches a pesticide residue that had been applied at the tree farm.

2. Water that the tree is standing in can become moldy- keep the water container covered if the tree is one that was fresh cut.

3. Artificial trees if chewed on and swallowed can cause severe damage to the intestinal track of a cat or dog. Supervise your pet and if you can’t, then keep your pet in a crate or in a closed room.

4. Antifreeze- from a leaking radiator in the garage- Antifreeze attractive to many pets. The taste is sort of sweet and some animals will lick or drink it. This stuff is deadly if you can not get your pet to an ER immediately. With rapid treatment your pet can be saved. Otherwise your Fluffy or Fido is doomed. No ifs or buts. Antifreeze fries the kidneys.

So on to foods we go: Do not allow your pet to taste or eat any of the following. Some of the foods/drinks will cause death or serious illness.

1. Alcohol  

2. Avocado

3. Chocolate- not any kind. Don’t take a chance and try to analyze the kind of chocolate ( dark  is extremely toxic.)

3. Fatty foods

4. Macadamia nuts, peanuts

5. Moldy or spoiled foods

6. Grapes and raisins

7. Yeast dough

8. Xylitol (this ingredient is in some chewing gum and used as a sweetner in some foods. Extremely toxic.

9. Garlic, garlic powder, onion and onion powder

10. Any flower that is growing from a bulb  or is a member of the lily family (these are killers also.) Damages the kidneys unless you get immediate treatment. Can begin kidney damage within minutes. Don’t take chances with any flower- just don’t bring them into your home.  Cats especially like to chew on fresh greenery. Some of the flowers of the lily family are sure fire killers.

11. Ornaments and electric cords/lights. Keep your pet away from the tree.

12. Don’t use use tinsel. Cats are attracted to the long dangling  strands. If eaten the tinsel can bind into a ball and block the intestinal tract or the tinsel, ribbon, or string can wind around parts of the intestines. These things also can kill you animal if surgery is not performed to remove the “foreign bodies.” 

 13. Some information says that coffee is also bad.

14. Mushrooms. Don’t allow your pet to acquire a taste for mushrooms. Veterinarians believe and other authorities that if a pet eats a commercially grown mushroom then it is more likely to hunt for these when outdoors. We all know that there are mushrooms growing in the wild that are poisonous. Some look like a toy and some look like a ball. I’ve seen my own dogs want to play with mushrooms that were “pretty balls” and I had to quickly destroy the mushroom and give a firm no to my dogs.

15. Medications of any kind, especially chewable human and pets meds. I have a chocolate lab named Molly that opened the bottom of a cabinet where I had stored some empty med bottles that I had washed and intended to use for who knows what. Molly found an empty Vetmedin (chewable heart med for dogs) bottle and chewed the bottle hoping to get something delicious. Some dogs love to eat and big dogs really love to eat. So child proof your cabinets or dog proof them.

16. One last caution while I’m “thinking.” This is one that I personally experienced. About eight or nine years ago, Puppy, my border collie and Australian shepherd cross jumped into the compost pile which was not fully “ripe.” I always added vegetable and fruit scraps and these were still in the decomposing stage. Puppy either ate a piece of the compost or licked some from his paws. Thank God I was outside with my dogs (I usually am). About 30 minutes after I had gone into the house with the dogs I noticed that he was very droopy and salivating excessively. He was very listless and I knew that he was in trouble. I called my vet and rushed him to the clinic. I told the vet that he had been  playing in the pile of compost and she then told me that compost can be very toxic if in the “right stage” of decomposing. She quickly gave him some injections and Puppy was ok after several hours.

17.Poinsettias. (a thank you to Dr. Laura for the reminder) Can be toxic and cause respiratory problems. Not considered deadly but please be careful>

The bottom line of this list is that you can’t be too careful if you are a pet parent.

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