We were at a Doggie Day Care in Lawrenceville talking about dog training, safety, and socialization with the owner when one of her clients overheard the conversation and joined the conversation.  She had a very important question.  “With the kids (and me), there are always things left around the house that our dog might get into.  What are the things that I should watch out for to protect him?  I don’t want something that I left out after the game to make my doggie sick…”

We all must remember that dogs, young and old, are very curious creatures. We always tell our clients not only to know and be vigilant about potential poisons in and around the home, but also to understand the tell-tale signs indicating that their dog has eaten something poisonous.  Even though something is safe for people to eat doesn’t necessarily mean it is safe for our dogs to eat.

Please check out the following tips regarding dog safety for poisons:

  • Keep pets away from common household cleaners (the fumes can be noxious) and heavy metals (such as lead) found in paint chips and linoleum.
  • Many foods are toxic to dogs.  These include avocado, onions, garlic, chocolate, raisins, grapes, alcoholic and caffeinated drinks, and some sweeteners.
  • Be very careful around antifreeze/coolant, even though animal-friendly products-made with propylene glycol, not ethylene glycol-are now available.  Wipe up antifreeze leaks or spills. Dogs love the sweet taste of these products and can die from kidney failure if they ingest even a small amount of these substances.
  • Store poisonous baits in places that your dog cannot access.  Like antifreeze, some baits smell sweet but are very toxic to pets, causing severe internal bleeding.
  • Consult with your veterinarian before giving your dog any vitamin or medication the veterinarian has not prescribed.  Even small doses of medications of any kind can be lethal to pets.  Keep all medicines well out of your dog’s reach.
  • Many plants are toxic to pets.  Learn about the types of toxic plants that may grow in your home and surroundings (both cultivated and wild).  Remove them or keep your pets away from them.
  • Keep your pets off lawns or gardens that have been treated with fertilizers, herbicides or insecticides.  If your dog has walked on treated lawns, wash and clean his feet as soon as possible.
  •  Ask your veterinarian for a detailed list of all potentially poisonous items, substances and plants found around your home. You can also check out Pet Poisons.

Possible Symptoms of Poisoning in Your Pet:

  • Vomiting
  • Shallow breathing
  • Stumbling or staggering
  • Fever
  • Sluggishness/lethargy
  • Increased thirst or hunger
  • Tremors or seizures
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Drooling
  • Increased or decreased heart rate
  • Dilated pupils

If your dog seems listless or out of sorts, contact your veterinarian or local animal hospital immediately.  Be sure you also know the name, phone number, and address of the local 24 hour Veterinarian if you need to call after hours.  If they tell you to come in, be sure to take along the packaging of the suspected substance or a sample of the plant you think your dog may have eaten. This can help the veterinarian know how best to treat your pet.

Please call Robin or me at (770) 718-7704 if you need any dog training help or need more information about poisons and harmful things that can hurt your dog.  We are blessed to have been your local dog training experts for over fourteen years.  We have trained over 5,000 great dogs and loving families and are ready to help you.