8 Easter Pet Safety Tips

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March 22, 2013
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Creative Commons photo by The Moonstone Archive

Easter for children can mean egg hunts, baskets of candy, and going to the mall to meet the Easter Bunny. Easter for our pets can mean a few temptations to chew, ingest, and lick things that aren’t good for them. With Easter right around the corner, remember to take a few extra steps to keep your pets safe.

Here are 8 safety tips for pets around the Easter holidays.

1: Say No to Easter Grass

Easter grass can make a basket really pretty but it’s irresistible for dogs and cats. They love to chew on it and if ingested it can be dangerous. Use tissue paper instead or if you do use Easter grass, keep those baskets out of reach of your pets.

2: Keep Chocolate Away From Pets

Chocolate contains theobromine and can cause hyperactivity, seizures, and an elevated heart rate in dogs. Keep the Easter stash hidden and away from your dog.

3: Sugar Substitute Xylitol is Toxic to Pets

Candy that has the sugar substitute xylitol, a sweetener, is toxic to dogs and cats. It’s often found in candy, gum, and some baked goods. If your pet ingests it, a drop in blood sugar can occur and cause problems such as seizures and liver failure. You may have to put your dog in another room while the kids celebrate Easter and dive into that basket of candy and chocolate.

4: Easter Lilies are Toxic to Cats

Easter lilies are very pretty but cats have a tendency to chew on them. These flowers are toxic to cats and can cause vomiting and lethargy. Hopefully your cat doesn’t jump on every surface in the house and you’ll be able to find a nice spot for the flowers. But if not, it may be best to avoid having Easter lilies in the house to keep your cat safe.

5: Table Scraps Can Be Harmful to Pets

Table scraps from dinner can be bad for your pet. The ingredients, spices, and fat content can make your pet ill, upset their stomach, or cause other problems such as obesity and behavior problems. Remind your family and guests to not give any food to the dog. If your dog does beg, you may need to crate your dog during dinner or have him hang out in another room with a toy or Kong with some treats to distract him.

6: Don’t Lose Track of Where You Hide Easter Eggs

Real or fake eggs might be mistaken as a treat or toy by your dog. If your dog eats or chews on a fake plastic egg, it can cause intestinal problems. Real eggs that have been forgotten during an Easter egg hunt can spoil and if your dog finds them a few days later and eats them, expect an upset stomach. Keep track of the number of eggs you hide in your yard and where they are to gather up any undiscovered ones after the hunt is over.

7: Stuffed Easter Toys for Kids May Not Be Suitable for Pets

Toys for the kids can be mistaken as toys for the dog, especially by the dog. Stuffed bunnies, chickens, and other plastic toys can be chewed, swallowed, and slobbered on by your furry buddy. Your dog might swallow plastic, stuffing, or other parts that can cause intestinal blockages or an upset stomach. Keep the baskets out of reach of your pet.

8: Crowds Can Be a Challenge with Pets

Crowded houses with friends, family, and guests can be overwhelming to your dog and cat. If your pets do not handle crowds well, crating your dog in a room away from the guests or putting your cat in the bedroom is the best solution with some food, water, and their bed. It cuts down on them getting into trouble, eating something they shouldn’t, and being easily frightened by all the people and noise.

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