In 2017, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) had 199,000 cases concerning potential poisonings. This is almost 20,000 more cases than they received in 2016! To help prevent some of these calls, here is the ASPCA’s Top 10 Pet Toxins of 2017.
- Human Prescription Medications – 17.5 percent of the APCC cases in 2017 were due to prescription medications. Pain medications, antidepressants and heart medications top the list of meds the APCC receives calls about. While most of the time, ingestion is accidental, sometimes pet owners inadvertently give the wrong medication.
- Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medications – Just shy of coming in first, OTC medications were 17.4 percent of APCC cases last year. This category contains a wide variety of medications such as vitamins, pain meds (such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen), antihistamines and herbal supplements. While there are some OTC medications that are safe to give our pets, we always recommend checking with your veterinarian at Blum before administering any OTC meds.
- Food – Our furry family members can’t enjoy all the same foods we do, because some of the things we eat are toxic for them. Grapes, raisins, onions, garlic macadamia nuts, alcohol, raw yeast bread dough, and xylitol are all foods that can be harmful for our pets.
- Veterinary Medications – Most owners know how difficult it can be to give their pets medication. That is why when possible, the medications are designed to be tasty so it’s easier for us to administer. Although this also means pets may be tempted to eat more than their prescribed amount. We recommend keeping medications in an area where your pet can’t access them!
- Chocolate — The majority of dog owners know that chocolate is harmful to their pups, but the severity of the ingestion depends on the type of chocolate ingested. For more information about chocolate ingestion, click here to read our Blum blog about what to do!
- Household Items – These household items range from carpet cleaners to paint to essential oils. While some household items will only cause mild skin irritation, others can be harmful to your pet. Before using any product, it’s best to read the label and follow usage instructions to help prevent unnecessary exposure.
- Insecticides – When using any insecticides and you have a pet, always follow the directions on the label. If the instructions are not properly followed, it can be dangerous for your furry family member!
- Rodenticides – Chicago dog owners are probably familiar with the bright yellow signs warning about areas that have been baited. Rat poison is definitely a concern for dog owners who lives in Chicago. For more information about rat poison ingestion, click here to read our Blum blog!
- Plants – Whether it was houseplants, landscaping plants or bouquets, they all caused issues for pets last year. Lilies, specifically the ones belonging to the Lilium genera, can cause life-threatening problems for cats. For more information on plants toxic to cats or dogs, click here to visit the ASPCA’s Poisonous Plants list.
- Garden Products – Some of our pets may fertilizers or other gardening products interesting. We recommend if you are gardening, to keep your furry family member safely confined, so they are not tempted to play with or ingest any products such as fertilizers or herbicides.
For any further questions or concerns about any possibly toxicity to your pet, please call us at: (773) 327-4446.
Written for Blum Animal Hospital by Jackie Sheppard.