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When we are all spoiling our lovely Mothers and Mums this weekend, remember that your dog is likely to be at home too and in on the action, investigating the wrapped presents, sniffing the flowers and attempting to eat the delicious chocolates. As responsible pet owners, we need to be aware of the dangers that certain plants and foodstuff can present to our canine and feline friends. This isn’t a comprehensive list of possible Mother’s Day Gifts that pose a threat, but it’s a guide for more common risks.
There are many different types of chocolate gifts, solid bars of dark chocolate, boxes of assorted continental types and even chocolate cakes that every mother will likely enjoy at some point. However, the cocoa that is used to make these chocolate goodies contains theobromine, a compound that is very toxic to our dogs. It all depends on how much chocolate your pet consumes, but dark chocolate, baking chocolate and cocoa powder contain more theobromine than the milk chocolate variety.
Never offer any chocolate items to your dog, and make sure they are well out of their reach. Symptoms of toxicity include hyperactivity, excitement, restlessness and trembling. Your dog may begin to vomit, have increased thirst and heart rate, and urinate more frequently. Call your vet immediately before seizures, muscle tremors, and even death occur.
Although more harmful to cats than dogs, all parts of the lily flower, including petals, stamens and leaves, are highly toxic. Mothers’ Day is when more pets are likely to be in the vicinity of lily flowers, so take extra care, and if you must give flowers as a gift, choose another variety.
Read the RSPCA warning on Lilly’s
Your mum may be fond of Chanel No 5, but your dog prefers the smell of rotting food and other waste he finds outside. Take note, though, that your dog can be affected if they come into direct contact with perfume or, worse, if they drink any. Perfumes usually contain ethanol and essential oils, which may be toxic to your pet. Severe nervous system problems, abdominal pain, and vomiting can all result.
Of course, we all love the aroma of a scented candle or wax melt, but apart from the chance of your dog’s wagging tail knocking it over when lit, there are many toxic chemicals from which these products are made not good for your dog. Candle wax can be made from paraffin wax or petroleum waste. Acetaldehyde, Benzene and Toluene are all components of decorative candles that you must keep well away from your pets.
Cakes and biscuits
Who would think a small piece of coffee or cake would harm your dog? Yet these patisserie products can contain caffeine, which can be fatal if consumed by a canine or raisins and grapes, which can cause kidney failure.
Here is our list of Toxic food for dogs
Keep your drink well out of your dog’s reach when celebrating Mothers’ Day with a glass of bubbly. Alcohol intake can lead to neurological and metabolic problems, breathing problems, vomiting, coma or death.
Take suitable precautions when choosing your gift this Mother’s Day, and make sure that everyone, including your lovely pets, enjoys your celebrations.
Consider a dog walker.
As well as taking your mum breakfast in bed and cooking dinner, you could consider taking the dog for a walk yourself (if you are old enough) or asking an adult to look into hiring a dog walker to give your mum a break.
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