Here are 8 safety tips for pets around the Easter holidays.
1: Say No to Easter Grass
Easter grass can make a basket really pretty but it’s irresistible for dogs and cats. They love to chew on it and if ingested it can be dangerous. Use tissue paper instead or if you do use Easter grass, keep those baskets out of reach of your pets.
2: Keep Chocolate Away From Pets
Chocolate contains theobromine and can cause hyperactivity, seizures, and an elevated heart rate in dogs. Keep the Easter stash hidden and away from your dog.
3: Sugar Substitute Xylitol is Toxic to Pets
Candy that has the sugar substitute xylitol, a sweetener, is toxic to dogs and cats. It’s often found in candy, gum, and some baked goods. If your pet ingests it, a drop in blood sugar can occur and cause problems such as seizures and liver failure. You may have to put your dog in another room while the kids celebrate Easter and dive into that basket of candy and chocolate.
4: Easter Lilies are Toxic to Cats
Easter lilies are very pretty but cats have a tendency to chew on them. These flowers are toxic to cats and can cause vomiting and lethargy. Hopefully your cat doesn’t jump on every surface in the house and you’ll be able to find a nice spot for the flowers. But if not, it may be best to avoid having Easter lilies in the house to keep your cat safe.
5: Table Scraps Can Be Harmful to Pets
Table scraps from dinner can be bad for your pet. The ingredients, spices, and fat content can make your pet ill, upset their stomach, or cause other problems such as obesity and behavior problems. Remind your family and guests to not give any food to the dog. If your dog does beg, you may need to crate your dog during dinner or have him hang out in another room with a toy or Kong with some treats to distract him.
6: Don’t Lose Track of Where You Hide Easter Eggs
Real or fake eggs might be mistaken as a treat or toy by your dog. If your dog eats or chews on a fake plastic egg, it can cause intestinal problems. Real eggs that have been forgotten during an Easter egg hunt can spoil and if your dog finds them a few days later and eats them, expect an upset stomach. Keep track of the number of eggs you hide in your yard and where they are to gather up any undiscovered ones after the hunt is over.
7: Stuffed Easter Toys for Kids May Not Be Suitable for Pets
Toys for the kids can be mistaken as toys for the dog, especially by the dog. Stuffed bunnies, chickens, and other plastic toys can be chewed, swallowed, and slobbered on by your furry buddy. Your dog might swallow plastic, stuffing, or other parts that can cause intestinal blockages or an upset stomach. Keep the baskets out of reach of your pet.
8: Crowds Can Be a Challenge with Pets
Crowded houses with friends, family, and guests can be overwhelming to your dog and cat. If your pets do not handle crowds well, crating your dog in a room away from the guests or putting your cat in the bedroom is the best solution with some food, water, and their bed. It cuts down on them getting into trouble, eating something they shouldn’t, and being easily frightened by all the people and noise.
9: Live Easter Animals
While live bunnies, chicks and other festive animals are adorable, resist the urge to buy them—these cute babies grow up fast and often require specialized care!
Baby bunnies and ducklings…..what’s not to like about the Easter holiday? It’s the one holiday where bunnies and ducks fit in perfectly with the season and we all know how adorable they are. To top it off, we hold Easter egg hunts and distribute baskets of candy and other goodies; it’s definitely a family favorite holiday celebration.
This Easter holiday, though, fun for your families can be potentially dangerous to your pets. Your pets, if able, will get into the Easter baskets and they will find the one egg that no one could find in the backyard Easter egg hunt. With the above concerns we have put together a short list of things to be aware of during this Easter holiday.
- Plastic Easter grass – dogs and cats enjoy chewing on this. While this may look pretty in the baskets, it can be potentially dangerous to dogs and cats if ingested. Consider using paper shreds or just not using any.
- Chocolate – Chocolate contains theobromine and can cause hyperactivity, seizures, and an elevated heart rate in dogs. Keep the Easter baskets away from your dogs.
- Xylotol is a s a natural, sugar-free sweetener commonly found in many chewing gums, mints, foods (e.g., pudding and gelatin snacks,) etc. In dogs, a smaller ingestion can cause an acute, life-threatening low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) within 10-15 minutes. A larger ingestion can result in acute liver necrosis and liver failure.
- The more dangerous, potentially fatal lilies are true lilies of the Lilium or Hemerocallis species. Examples of some of these dangerous lilies include the tiger, day, Asiatic hybrid, Easter, Japanese Show, rubrum, stargazer, red, Western, and wood lilies – all of which are highly toxic to cats! Even small ingestion (such as 2-3 petals or leaves) – even the pollen or water from the vase – can result in severe, acute kidney failure.
- Table scraps – It’s hard when food falls on the floor or your family is tempted to give your pet a bite of the Easter dinner. Just say “no”to giving your pets table scraps. Instead, crate them and give them extra treats with their food.
- Remember where you hide those Easter eggs! Sounds funny, but consider making a map of your backyard and track all the eggs that are found and make sure they are all accounted for. Your dog will find the eggs even if you can not!
- Plush toys found in Easter baskets. Your dog will think it’s a chew toy, and eating the plastic and stuffing can cause digestive problems and possible intestinal blockages.
- Visitors – Family and friends visiting may make your pets anxious. Consider crating your dogs in a quiet part of the house.
- We also may be tempted to purchase a bunny or baby duck for our children during this time, remember that these animals will grow and will require continuous care. Plus, they will need to interact well with existing pets. So if you are thinking about adding a pet during this time, do some research and make sure you and your family are in it for the long haul.