Ring in Spring with Pet SafetyFriday, March 31, 2017
With spring in the air, pet owners should take note of potential seasonal hazards. While you enjoy the longer, warmer days, keep these tips in mind:
- Do not allow pets access to cleaning or building supplies during spring cleaning and home improvement projects.
- Keep Easter food and décor away from pets. Lilies are highly toxic to cats, chocolate can make dogs and cats sick, and decorative Easter grass can cause intestinal blockage if ingested.
- While attending to the garden, don’t allow pets in areas where fertilizers, insecticides (especially snail bait) and herbicides are used, and store these product containers out of reach. Even “pet safe” products can be harmful if ingested in large doses. Some spring plants, including azaleas and rhododendron, are also poisonous to animals.
- Though rats are a year-round problem in Portland, they tend to attract the most attention – and cause the biggest – threat in spring. Rat bait is one of the most poisonous pesticides for both cats and dogs, especially since symptoms don’t always show up right away. Be sure to keep all animals away from areas where rat bait is placed and stored.
- Better weather means more walks and outdoor play time. It’s time to update your pet’s microchip and start your furry friend on heartworm, flea and tick prevention. Now might also be a good time to make sure you are up to date on vaccines.
- Before you open the window to enjoy a cool, spring breeze, be sure your window screens are sturdy and installed correctly. Pets, especially cats, are at risk of jumping or falling through unsecured screens.
- If you and your pet are coming out of hibernation from the rainy winter, ease into activity. Start with shorter walks and gradually work your way up to longer play sessions or hikes.