Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Have A Happy Easter - Safely

Easter Can Be Dangerous For Pets
Originally posted March 27th, 2007
Not familiar with Easter? Click here for more information.

We hope you have a wonderful Easter holiday. We want to remind you, however, that Easter can be a dangerous time for your four-legged best friends.
One of Easter's prettiest decorations can be deadly to your cat. Easter lilies are poisonous to cats and can cause kidney failure when eaten in even small quantities. Keep lilies where your cat can't get to them and if your cat does eat the lilies, take him/her to the vet immediately.
Dogs can become sick from eating something they seem to absolutely love - chocolate. It would take quite a bit of milk chocolate to kill a dog. None the less, with all the chocolate bunnies and Easter eggs available at this time of year, precautions should be taken to protect your dog from the adverse effects of eating chocolate, even if it is just an upset tummy.

Theobromine is chocolate's poisonous component. Symptoms of theobromine toxicity include vomiting, diarrhea, increased urination and/or hyperactivity. This can progress to an increased heart rate, which can cause arrhythmia, restlessness, hyperactivity, muscle twitching and excessive panting. That, in turn, can lead to hyperthermia, muscle tremors, seizures, coma and even death.
According to PetCareTips.net, and verified on the ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center, one pound of milk chocolate or two ounces of Bakers' chocolate can be toxic to a 20-pound dog. PetCareTips.net also says that white chocolate, which has the lowest amount of theobromine, would require that 20-pound pup to eat over 200-pounds of the stuff to be poisoned. How a 20-pound dog would be able to eat 200-pounds of anything is beyond us, but almost any 20-pound pup can pack away a pound of milk chocolate and can certainly snarf up two ounces of Bakers' chocolate.
Finally, Ellie Brecher's blog, Crazy for Critters, has a recent post reminding everyone to Resist the Rabbit Urge by not succumbing to the desire to give pet bunnies (or ducklings) as Easter gifts. Click this link to read the appropriate section of Ellie's blog, or this link to read a recent MiamiHerald.com story on the same topic.
The bottom line is, if you, or one of your friends or neighbors, absolutely, positively must have a pet for Easter, come on down to Pet Rescue and adopt a cat or dog. If you simply can't come to Pet Rescue, then go to your local Humane Society or any other animal shelter and get your pet there. But please, no bunnies or ducklings.
Have a great Easter, Passover and/or Mawlid al-Nabi. Stay safe and be kind to others, especially the animals.