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In preparation for Poison Prevention Awareness Month in March, we’ve put together some top tips for helping prevent pet poisoning and what to do in an emergency.

The kitchen may be where the family gathers, but it’s also where you can find foods that are hazardous to cats and dogs.

Toxic Foods to Watch Out For

Be extra quick with the broom when these items fall on the floor, and make sure to store them securely in a high cupboard.

• Onions • Garlic • Grapes • Avocados • Raisins • Chocolate (especially dark chocolate) • Sugar-free treats or peanut butter containing xylitol • Coffee • Cherry and apricot pits • Macadamia nuts • Caffeine • Salt • Apple seeds • Alcoholic beverages

What Else is Lurking Around the House?

• Essential oils, both diffused and directly applied • Candles not made from soy or beeswax • Human drugs or vitamins • Rat poison • Fertilizer • Cleaning products

Poison Prevention Tips

• Teach your pet to stay out of the kitchen. • Give them a job to do, like the “Place” command, when you’re preparing meals. • Supervise your pet at all times, especially if you’ve got a counter surfer. If you need to step out of the kitchen, put your dog somewhere safe like a crate. • Make sure to clean up all the remnants from the floor. • Purchase safe alternatives, when possible, like peanut butter without xylitol. • If your dog has a habit of picking things up off the ground outside, you can keep him or her safe with a basket muzzle that allows proper panting but makes it more difficult to grab potentially dangerous items.

Teach your dog the “out” or “leave it” command, which essentially means “drop whatever is in your mouth and disengage.” This could be a lifesaver when it comes to toxic foods or choking hazards.

Poisoning Symptoms

Call your vet or head to the nearest emergency clinic as soon as possible if see any of these symptoms.

Give them any details you have on what your pet may have ingested!

• Agitation, tremors and/or convulsions • Vomiting • Diarrhea • Low energy • Abnormal heart rate • Drooling • Nausea • Pale gums

Are you covered?

If your pet does happen to swallow something hazardous, your trip to the vet or emergency room may be covered under your Pets Plus Us® pet health insurance policy.

The number for Pet Poison Helpline (855) 764-7661 - A 24-hour animal poison control service available throughout the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean for pet owners and veterinary professionals who require assistance with treating a potentially poisoned pet.

Clients that have a policy with Pets Plus Us will have a special number that comes with their policy that gives them free access to the pet poison helpline, but as a general number the one above is what clients can call (it is a pay service).

Share these tips and help keep your friends’ pets safe, too!

To learn more visit or call us 1-800-364-8422


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