March is Poison Prevention Awareness Month.

Being aware of the different items that could pose potential dangers to our pets is essential. Many things are common and may be overlooked when “pet-proofing” our homes. Don’t get so caught up in the day-to-day that you miss keeping these out of your pet’s reach!

Here are some examples of common household items that are potentially poisonous to our pets:  

Medications 

You may be thinking, “well, this seems obvious.” It probably is! Of course, you don’t want your pet getting ahold of any of your medications. The thing is, medications are a part of our everyday life, so we may tend to get lax about leaving them lying around the house.  

You had a headache, so you took some aspirin and left the container on your nightstand.  

You take a daily allergy pill and often leave the bottle on the counter so you don’t forget.  

You want to be mindful and remind yourself often that these medications can be hazardous to your pet and always put them well out of reach when you are done with them!  

Cleaning Products  

This is another obvious one, but it serves as another good reminder! Cleaning products are essential to keeping our homes tidy and livable, but many can be dangerous for our pets.

If you don’t already, store your cleaning supplies in a cabinet or drawer your pet cannot access, and remember to put them away when you’re finished. You could even consider a child’s lock on the cabinet for extra safety! When you can, purchase all-natural products with less toxic ingredients to ensure added security.  

Holiday Decorations  

As we filter through each season, you find yourself bringing out seasonal items your pet is not used to. Something new and shiny! This might draw extra attention to the item.  

For example, poinsettia plants at Christmas make sense for decoration but are poisonous if ingested by your pets. That new garland you hung? They might decide it looks like a fancy new chew toy, which could also present danger.

Whenever you introduce new decorations into your pet’s environment, assess their safety and put anything risky out of reach (or not out at all).  

Certain Foods  

Certain foods in your pantry would do no good for your pet.  

Don’t let them sneak into your chocolate stash, as the ingredients combined with the amount, they eat could be potentially lethal to your pet. Some foods, like particular peanut butter brands, gums, and candies, contain an ingredient called xylitol, which can make your pet very ill. Grapes and raisins are poisonous hazards for dogs. Alcohol and anything containing caffeine are also dangerous!
Take stock of what is in your pantry and take measures to ensure your pet is only eating what you intend them to.  

The key to keeping our pets safe from poisonous hazards is prevention! Use this month as an opportunity to safe-proof your home from any dangers that may be within your pet’s reach. If you think your pet may have ingested a potentially poisonous substance, call Animal Poison Control at (888) 426-4435.