Don’t drop that grape! Poison Prevention in Cats

Everyone wants to protect their pet as much as possible. Learning more about potential poisons and toxins for cats is your best defense for preventing exposure to these harmful substances.

We’ve compiled a handy list outlining a variety of household toxins.

  • Be aware of harmful plants! With easter right around the corner, we’d like to remind everyone that lilies are toxic to cats. (All parts of the plant including the leaves.) Other plants to watch out for are: azaleas, sago palm, oleander, and fox glove.
  • Tylenol causes severe liver damage in cats. Only ever give medications that are prescribed by your veterinarian.
  • Although cats do not have taste receptors for sweetness, chocolate ingestion does occur. Chocolate contains theobromine which can can cause gastrointestinal upset, seizures, and death. The darker the chocolate, the more concentrated and dangerous it becomes for our pets. Coffee should be avoided as well.
  • Treat your cat safely and never offer the following human foods: grapes, onions/garlic, raw eggs, fat trimmings and bones, and chocolate/caffeine as mentioned above.
  • Contrary to the common belief, cats should not have cow’s milk as it can cause diarrhea. Once kittens become adults, they no longer have the enzymes required to digest dairy.
  • Flea products purchased over the counter may contain permethrins. These substances are highly toxic to cats, especially if the wrong dose is applied. Permethrin toxicity produces muscle tremors and seizures, and may even cause death. Always check with your veterinarian first before applying any flea treatment to a sick, elderly or pregnant cat. See us for safe and effective control of fleas and parasites!
  • Insect and rodent traps are poisonous to our pets too, and often these products are baited with attractive ingredients. Make sure they are kept out of reach, or consider live traps instead if possible.
  • Antifreeze (ethylene glycol) should be completely inaccessible. As little as one teaspoon can permanently damage the kidneys, causing death.
  • Ingestion of excess salt (such as table salt or road salt) can disrupt your cat’s electrolyte balance and cause burns in the mouth and throat. Salt is also irritating to the skin, so if your kitty wanders outside, wipe off their paws for them with a damp cloth.
  • Do not allow access to areas that have been sprayed with pesticides or fertilizers until the area has dried completely or the label indicates it is safe to do so.
  • Longterm effects of second hand smoke do affect our pets. Breathing in or ingesting the toxins from their fur while grooming can cause respiratory disease and cancers over time.

If your cat shows any symptoms of toxicity, or if you are concerned about toxin exposure please do not delay and contact a veterinarian right away.