Danger Alert! Common Pet Toxins

Are you aware of the most common pet toxins and what to do if your pet ingests one?

dark chocolate is a common pet toxin

Household toxins are a common source of pet poisoning, particularly in the kitchen or bathroom. However, potential hazards can lurk everywhere, including in your garage, garden, and cupboards. Therefore, it is important to brush up on your knowledge of common pet toxin’s for National Poison Prevention Week, which is March 20-26 this year.

What are the most common toxins for pets?

Many items that are safe for people are toxic for pets, so before bringing flowers into your home or sharing a snack with your furry pal, ensure they are not hazardous. According to the ASPCA, the ten most common toxins that pets encounter include:

  • Over-the-counter medications
  • Human prescription medications
  • Food
  • Chocolate
  • Veterinary products
  • Household items
  • Rodenticides
  • Plants
  • Insecticides
  • Garden products

What signs should I watch for if my pet is exposed to a toxin?

While each toxin causes specific signs, some general conditions can develop if your pet has been exposed to a poisonous substance. Your furry pal may have come in contact with a potential common pet toxin if they develop the following issues:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Seizures
  • Excessive thirst
  • Abnormal bleeding, bruising, or blood in the stool or urine
  • Hyperactivity
  • Extreme lethargy
  • Ataxia, or impaired coordination
  • Excessive salivation
  • Confusion
  • Changes in heart rate or rhythm
  • Changes in breathing

Keep in mind that toxicity signs may not always develop immediately. In fact some problems, such as clotting disorders from rodenticide toxicity, may not become apparent until days after ingestion.

Who should I contact if my pet comes in contact with a potential toxin?

If your pet ingests or comes in contact with a potential toxin, contact an animal poison control hotline immediately. A veterinary toxicologist will guide you on what steps to take to ensure your pet receives the appropriate treatment. Additionally, they will give you a case number that will allow a veterinarian or our team to contact them to discuss a treatment plan.

When in doubt, if your pet comes in contact with a toxic substance, contact an animal poison control center ASAP, then call our team for help.

Need help identifying other pet emergencies? Check out our Emergency Vet Care page for help.

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