Pet owners contact the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) daily due to their pets ingesting something dangerous in their purse or bag. Make sure you are educated about what your pet can and cannot be exposed to. Here is a list of items from ASPCA to make sure you keep away from your pet that could be poisonous to them and cause serious damage or be fatal.

Pet Poisons

  • Medications: These can range from over-the-counter meds, to prescriptions, to vitamins and supplements. Sometimes medications are combined into one container or pill-minder to save space, but that can make it difficult to remember how many of each were in the container and what medications were in there to begin with. And if your pet does get into any medications, it is important to know (or be able to estimate) how much they ingested. It is always safest to keep medications and supplements in separate child-proof containers and out of reach of our furry friends.
  • Sugar-free gum or candy: These candies and gums can be toxic to dogs because many of these products contain the sweetener xylitol, which can cause low blood sugar and liver failure if enough is ingested. Be sure to check the ingredients on any sugary products and keep away from curious pets.
  • Chocolate: This one should be a no brainer. Risks in pets from chocolate ingestion can range from stomach upset to an increase in heart rate and effects to the nervous system, depending on how much was ingested and what type of chocolate was consumed. Always remember the darker the chocolate, the more dangerous it is. 
  • Make-up: Depending on what country it was manufactured in; some cosmetics may contain lead which could be harmful to pets if ingested. 
  • Albuterol inhalers: If pets are able to puncture an inhaler, symptoms can include lethargy, an increase in heart rate and changes to their potassium level. 
  • Eye drops: Naphazoline, an ingredient found in most redness relief formulas, and brimonidine, found in eye drops for glaucoma, can both cause a serious drop in heart rate and blood pressure, even if small amounts are ingested.
  • Coins: Pennies contain zinc and can cause zinc toxicity. Too much zinc will cause severe stomach upset, anemia, kidney injury and inflammation of the pancreas.
  • Illicit drugs: Any exposure is considered life-threatening with drugs such as cocaine, heroin or methamphetamines. Marijuana or THC can also be potentially hazardous and can be found in things like edibles, homemade desserts or gummies. 

If you suspect that your pet has been exposed to any poisonous substances or ingested something dangerous, contact Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) 888-426-4435 immediately or a local Veterinarian to make sure your furry loved one is safe.

Animal Care Center in Smyrna, GA, is owned and operated by Otto H. Williams, DVM. The veterinary practice specializes in complete healthcare for cats and dogs and offers services including preventative, surgical and nonsurgical care, internal medicine, grooming and boarding to Cobb County and surrounding cities such as Vinings, Marietta, Mableton and Sandy Springs. Call today at 770.438.2694 or request an appointment.