Chocolate: The darker the chocolate (which means higher amounts of the active ingredient theobromine), the more toxic it is to your pet. While cats are also susceptible to chocolate toxicity, it tends to be much more common in dogs. The size of your dog, the type and amount of chocolate ingested are all factors in determining toxicity. Reactions can range from less serious GI symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea up to seizures and heart failure in severe cases.
Candy or treats containing Xylitol: Xylitol is a common ingredient in sugar-free candy, treats or gum. If ingested by a cat or dog it can cause low blood sugar, seizures, liver failure and death.
Fatty foods: A glistening ham on the table may prove to be a temptation your furry friend can’t ignore. While fatty foods can cause stomach upset such as vomiting and diarrhea, in more serious cases it can cause painful pancreatitis for your cat or dog – a trip to the vet with supportive care such as IV fluids is not what anyone in the family had in mind for the long weekend.
Onion, garlic, chives, leeks: If your pet ingests foods in the allium family, it may take a few days for symptoms to appear. Signs to watch out for are lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, painful abdomen, pale gums and increased heart and respiratory rates.
Easter Lilies: Definitely a more common toxicity in cats than in dogs (cats are much more likely to nibble plants); Lilies are a huge problem if ingested. In fact, even licking a petal, steam or leaf of a lily can cause kidney failure.
Basket fillers: Another favourite of our feline friends, plastic grasses used as basket fillers are very tempting to eat or play with. If ingested, the plastic pieces can cause an obstruction which will require surgery.
Plastic eggs: Fun to play with, fun to toss, fun to chew? Sounds good but unfortunately they are not good toys for our cats or dogs. These little plastic eggs, all shiny and colourful, can cause an obstruction if swallowed (even small pieces that have broken off are a cause for concern) and just like plastic grass, if an obstruction happens, surgery must follow.
*If you have concerns about your pet ingesting any of the above, please contact us or the emergency clinic as soon as possible. We hope you have a safe and hoppy Easter!