Spring is here and the weather is starting to improve. While the warmer weather and longer days are great for pet owners, the change of season comes with some additional risks. There are an increased number of poisons, fertilizers and harmful plants to watch out for as the seasons change.
Here are 5 things in your garden to watch out for that could harm your pet:
1. Snail Bait
This is a fairly common cause of poisoning in pets, often found in a pellet form bearing a resemblance to dog food. As little as 1 teaspoon is potentially fatal to small dogs and cats. Snail Bait contains the drug metaldehyde which is toxic if consumed by your pet. Tremors are usually the first sign, but other symptoms can include vomiting and seizures.
2. Fertilizers and Weed Killers
These can be harmful to pets, especially if ingested directly. Typically, warnings suggest keeping your pets off the grass for at least 72 hours after using a fertilizer, and remember to keep any bags well out of reach. Switch chemical fertilizers for a pet friendly option like compost, seaweed extract, fish emulsion or manure.
3. Fruit pits and seeds
Fruit pits and seeds can pose a danger to your fur-baby for a number of reasons. If consumed they pose a risk of blockages, obstructions and even poisoning (e.g. cyanide). They can also potentially harm your pet’s teeth!
4. Insecticides and pesticides
These can cause drooling, vomiting and diarrhea if consumed. Some rare pesticides are mixed with dangerous chemicals like organophosphates and carbamates and can be life threatening. Toxic levels of carbamate insecticides can cause seizures and respiratory arrest. Organophosphate toxicity may lead to chronic anorexia, muscle weakness and muscle twitching. As with fertilizers, read the labels and keep them out of reach of your pets.
5. Several plants and flowers are also dangerous
Lilies are particularly toxic to cats, and common plants like Aloe, Tulips and Daffodils can be harmful to your pooch! Talk to your vet or garden center to find out which plants are safe for your garden, or check out the ASPCA list of safe plants by animal type.
If your pet appears to have ingested something poisonous, contact your local vet immediately. Symptoms to watch out for include vomiting, seizures, tremors or excessive salivating.