Have you heard the one about the economic times being so difficult that plants are the new pets, pets are the new children, and children are basically a luxury good? Well, if you are among those who live with pets, here are some common household items that may be harmful to your non-human family members. The focus will largely be on cats and dogs, because of their established hegemony in the pets space.
Essential oils are never okay for cats. Their bodies cannot metabolize it and can lead to serious health problems. Essential oils should not be consumed by the cat, applied topically, or diffused into the air. There is no safe amount of dilution for them. If you want to diffuse essential oils you can do it while they are not in the room but even that is not recommended. For dogs, essential oils should be heavily diluted although because of their strong sense of smell it may still irritate them. Overall, using essential oils with pets is not recommended.
Certain human food
Some human foods are poisonous to pets. Alcohol is toxic to both dogs and cats. Foods that are toxic to cats include chocolate, grapes, raisins, onions, garlic, green tomatoes, avocado, and milk because they are lactose intolerant. Milk and milk products cause stomach upsets, cramps, and gives them gas. For chocolate, dark, and unsweetened varieties are the most toxic. Avocado is mildly toxic and can cause diarrhoea in cats. Small amounts of garlic and onion in food will not harm them but eating a whole garlic clove or large piece of raw onion will harm them.
For those with dogs as pets, the human foods to avoid include avocados, chocolate, grapes, raisins, onions, garlic, chives, macadamia nuts, apples, apricots, cherries, peaches, plums, coffee, tea, and other caffeine, and yeast dough. Avocados may cause fluid to accumulate in the lungs and chest, making it difficult to breathe and may even lead to death. Caffeine products speed up the heart rates of dogs and may cause them to have an abnormal heart rhythm or lung failure. Chocolate can cause stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, and dehydration.
Human medication should also be kept away from pets.
There are plants that are toxic to pets including tulips, daffodils, foxglove, and azaleas. They can cause symptoms such as vomiting, drooling, and even kidney damage when ingested. Before getting indoor plants or plants for your garden, it’s important to carry out some research to find out what varieties may be toxic to your furry friends. It’s also important to keep your pets from garden chemicals including fertilizers, and herbicides.
Petroleum jelly has laxative properties that can cause intestinal issues if eaten by pets. There have been recommendations to apply petroleum jelly to the paws of cats to protect them from cracks and also to help them pass hairballs. Be careful about quantities when using this hairballs home remedy.
Cleaning chemicals and other chemicals
Cleaning chemicals including bleach are harmful to pets. This is not calling a moratorium on using them in the home, just that it’s important to thoroughly dry the areas you were cleaning. You should keep most cleaning products and other chemicals away from pets. Vinegar and baking soda are pet-friendly alternatives you can also opt for.
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