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What is poisonous to your cats and dogs?

Jul 14, 2016


We pretty much all know that chocolate is poisonous to cats and dogs. But there are quite a lot of things that we can find in and around the home that can prove detrimental to our beloved pets. Here are just a few things that you may want to keep out of Rover or Kitty's reach.


  • Lilies - It is not just growing plants that can be a problem. Cut flowers such as lilies are highly toxic. It's not just the leaves but the flowers and the pollen as well. Less than one leaf ingested by a cat can cause kidney failure and urgent veterinary treatment is required to prevent death.
  • Ethylene glycol (an active ingredient in Antifreeze)
  • Flea treatment with Permethrin in
  • Metaldehyde - found in slug/snail repellents
  • Petroleum distillates - found in paint, varnishes, preservatives and glass cleaners
  • Ivy
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine products
  • Onions and garlic
  • Grapes and raisins
  • Rodent poisons
  • Anti inflammatory drugs - eg. ibuprofen, paracetamol
  • Vitamin D - found in any number of products
  • This list is not exhaustive

Poisoning can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, bleeding from the gut, convulsions, abnormal heart rhythm and kidney failure. Effects may be delayed for several days and may be permanent.

What to do if you think your animal has been poisoned:

  • Stay calm. Remove animal from the source of poison.
  • Contact your vet immediately; inform them when, where and how poisoning occurred. If appropriate, take the packaging, plant or substance to the vet. Don’t expose yourself to any harm.
  • Follow your vet’s advice.

Never attempt to treat/medicate the animal yourself. Some medicines for humans and other animals may be poisonous to your pet.

Never attempt to make the animal vomit. Do not use salt water as it’s extremely dangerous.

If skin/fur is contaminated, wash with mild shampoo and water, rinse well and dry.

Keep your pet away from other animals to avoid cross-contamination.

Never ‘watch and wait’. If you suspect your pet’s been poisoned, contact a vet immediately.

Preventing poisoning:

In the home:

  • Keep an eye on your pet.
  • Keep houseplants where cats and dogs cannot reach them. Collect dropped leaves/petals.
  • Keep pesticides , e.g. rat baits, away from areas pets can access.
  • If treating pets with insecticides, separate them from other pets.


  • Ensure housing and exercise areas are free from, and not overhung by, poisonous plants.
  • Ensure water supplies cannot become contaminated, and change regularly.

So, spread the word and let's continue to keep our pets safe



Alex Sandham

Animal Care Assistant

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