Vet Blog

Pet Poison Prevention Week

March 14, 2018

March 18-24 is Pet Poison Prevention Awareness week and while there are some things that are commonly known to keep away from our pets, there are some things you may not be aware of.

So, we thought now would be a great time to help you brush up on your awareness and give you some tips in case your fur baby does get into something he/she shouldn't.

According to the Pet Poison Helpline, the top 10 toxins they mostly receive calls about are. The toxins range in degrees of toxicity but none of them should be taken lightly.


  • Chocolate
  • Mouse and Rat Poisons (rodenticides)
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Xylitol (sugar-free gum & more)
  • Grapes & Raisins
  • Antidepressant Medications
  • Acetaminophen (e.g. Tylenol)
  • Vitamin D Overdose
  • Stimulant Medications (e.g. for ADD/ADHD)
  • Fertilizers


  • Lilies (Lilium species)
  • Spot-on flea/tick medication for dogs
  • Household Cleaners
  • Antidepressant Medications
  • Essential Oils
  • Anti-inflammatory Medications
  • Mouse & Rat Poisons (rodenticides)
  • Stimulant Medications (e.g. for ADD/ADHD)
  • Onions & Garlic
  • Vitamin D Overdose

Here is a great infographic you can print and keep handy to help remind you of what to keep out of fur-baby reach. Now, while you may think that many (if not all) of these items are in safe locations, it never hurts to double-check and make sure. Especially if you have an extremely curious pet. Always better safe than sorry!

Digging In Deeper About The "Bad Stuff"

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center gets more specific with items that are toxic to your pet and include information on the effect (s) they could have on your pet. They also have a very extensive list and guide of toxic and non-toxic plants.

Pet Poison Emergency Kit

Again, going on the "better safe than sorry" mentality, and especially if you have a new puppy or kitten, think about putting together a Pet Poison Emergency Kit and Plan. Here are some suggestions from the Pet Poison Hotline.

Contacts Readily Accessible

  • If your pet does get into some toxins, the very first thing you want to do is call your vet, the nearest emergency veterinary clinic, or the Pet Poison Hotline. Have these handy and quickly accessible - perhaps on an index card on the fridge.
  • Make sure you know where you keep a copy of your pet's vaccine records (including proof of rabies vaccination) and know any medical issues your pet may have or medications (s)he may be on.

Basic Supplies

  • Make sure the leash is handy and you have a way to safely transport your pet.
  • If your pet normally wears a muzzle, make sure to assess your pet first to ensure (s)he would not be at risk of vomiting, choking, or respiratory distress due to the toxin.
  • Take along a large towel or blanket to help to move him/her to help keep them calm.

First-Aid Supplies

Please do not attempt any home treatment or remedy without speaking to a veterinarian first so you do not cause further harm to your pet.

  • Artificial tears, ophthalmic saline solution, and sterile saline solution
  • Alcohol wipes
  • Bandage material: absorbent gauze pads, adhesive tape, gauze rolls, sterile non-stick gauze pads, splints, and tongue depressors.
  • Diphenhydramine (e.g., Benadryl®) 25 mg tablets or liquid 12.5 mg/tsp (5mL) concentration (with NO other combination ingredients)
  • Ear-cleaning solution
  • Hydrogen peroxide 3% (within the expiration date) for inducing vomiting in dogs. Do not give to cats or brachycephalic dogs. Always verify with the vet if inducing vomiting is needed or safe for the health status of the dog or species.
  • Ice pack- instant, single-use, with a small hand towel to wrap around pack
  • Liquid hand dishwashing detergent (e.g., Dawn) without a bleach additive
  • Oral dosing syringe, bulb syringe, or turkey baster (for administering hydrogen peroxide or medication)
  • Penlight or flashlight
  • Rectal thermometer and lubricant
  • Rubber gloves and/or Latex-free exam gloves
  • Scissors (with blunt ends)
  • Tablespoon/teaspoon set (to calculate the appropriate amount of hydrogen peroxide to give per veterinarian's instructions)
  • Triple antibiotic ointment (with NO other combination ingredients - NOT for use in CATS!)

Practice What You Read

While pet safety should be practiced 24/7, going into spring is a great time to brush up on your awareness of keeping your fur-baby safe in and around the house, and we hope this gives you a good head-start. As always, if you have any questions you can always contact us.