Thursday, March 27, 2014

Potential dangers hiding in purses and backpacks

Some common every-day objects are very dangerous to cats and dogs, and it might be easy to forget that they're available in an open purse, backpack, or similar. Pets are a lot like babies; they stuff things in their mouths that we would never dream of tasting.

A good idea is to have a designated bag-area out of reach. It can be hooks on the wall, a cupboard, or a shelf. It is also a good idea to make a routine out of always closing zippers and similar

Human medications

Prescription medications should never be taken by anyone except for the person with the prescription. But, even common painkillers can cause problems for pets. Advil, Motrin, and Tylenol are examples of common drugs very dangerous to pets. The acetaminophen in one Tylenol is enough to kill a cat, and can cause liver problems in a dog. Human antidepressants are also very dangerous for pets.

Asthma inhalers

These look innocent enough, but some dogs think they're toys, and if a dog bites through the shell, the substance inside is enough to cause an acute, life-threatening poisoning.

Artificially sweetened gum and mints.

Most chewing gums and mints contain xylitol. It is also common in chewable vitamins, sugar free candy, and nicotine gum. Xylitol is fine for humans, but very toxic to dogs. Even a small amount can lead to a dangerous blood sugar crash in dogs, and a larger amount can lead to liver failure.

Nicotine

All forms of nicotine. Cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, chewing tobacco, nicotine gum, lozenges, anything with nicotine can potentially kill a pet.

Hand sanitizer

These products contain lots of alcohol and can potentially cause coma and death in pets.


If you think your pet got into something poisonous, call your veterinarian at once. If they really ate something poisonous minutes can matter, and the sooner you get the correct diagnose, the easier, safer, and less expensive it will be to treat your pet.

If you want to know more about pet poisons, visit the Pet Poison Helpline!

~ Maria Sadowski ~

3 comments:

  1. Just like with mini humans, a home needs to be pet proof.

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    1. Absolutely. Some of these things might be easy to miss, though, especially in homes where there are both mini-humans and puppies. There's so much stuff people can eat that doggies shouldn't have.

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  2. I have gum in my purse. I keep my purse up and away, but sometimes I just toss it on a table or counter - our dogs can still get to it. I'll start hanging it with my coat going forward. Better safe than sorry.

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