Ten Tips to Help Keep Your Pets Safe on Valentine’s Day
Chocolate and flowers: Great for relationships, very dangerous for pets. Keep these things in mind during all the smoochin’:
1: Many pet owners are still unaware that all species of lily are potentially fatal to cats. When sending a floral arrangement, specify that it contain no lilies if the recipient has a catâ€”and when receiving an arrangement, sift through and remove all dangerous flora.
2: If your pet is suffering from symptoms such as stomach upset, vomiting or diarrhea, he may have ingested a potentially dangerous flower or plant.
3: Seasoned pet lovers know the potentially life-threatening dangers of chocolate, including bakerâ€™s, semi sweet, milk and dark. In darker chocolates, methylxanthinesâ€”caffeine-like stimulants that affect gastrointestinal, neurologic and cardiac functionâ€”can cause vomiting/diarrhea, hyperactivity, seizures and an abnormally elevated heart rate.
4: The high-fat content in lighter chocolates can potentially lead to a life-threatening inflammation of the pancreas.
5: Spilled wine, half a glass of champagne, some leftover liquor are nothing to cry over until a curious pet laps them up. Because animals are smaller than humans, a little bit of alcohol can do a lot of harm, causing vomiting, diarrhea, lack of coordination, central nervous system depression, tremors, difficulty breathing, metabolic disturbances and even coma. Potentially fatal respiratory failure can also occur if a large enough amount is ingested.
6: So donâ€™t let pets near treats sweetened with xylitol. If ingested, gum, candy and other treats that include this sweetener can result in a sudden drop in blood sugar known as hypoglycemia. This can cause your pet to suffer depression, loss of coordination and seizures.
7: Donâ€™t let pets near roses or other thorny stemmed flowers. Biting, stepping on or swallowing their sharp, woody spines can cause serious infection if a puncture occurs.
8: Itâ€™s nice to set your evening a-glow with candlelight, but put out the fire when you leave the room. Pawing kittens and nosy pooches can burn themselves or cause a fire by knocking over unattended candles.
9: Gather up tape, ribbons, bows, wrapping paper, cellophane and balloons after presents have been openedâ€”if swallowed, these long, stringy and â€œfun-to-chewâ€ items can get lodged in your petâ€™s throat or digestive tract, causing her to choke or vomit.
10: Giving a cuddly puppy or kitten may seem a fitting Valentineâ€™s Day giftâ€”however, returning a pet you hadnâ€™t planned on is anything but romantic. Companion animals bring with them a lifelong commitment, and choosing a pet for someone else doesnâ€™t always turn out right.