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How To Make Easter Safe For Your Cat and Dog

Easter safe for your cat and dog

Easter can be a joyful holiday for the entire family, and if you have a cat or dog (or several), you want to ensure they have a safe time as well. Here are some essential tips to remember.

Hiding candy

If you hide chocolate eggs, other chocolates, or any type of candy that contains xylitol (an artificial sweetener), be sure your dogs and cat don’t find them. That includes plastic eggs you may have stuffed with these sweets.

Although your children or grandchildren may be delighted to find these treasures, chocolate and xylitol are toxic to dogs and cats. Be sure you can account for every treat you hide because your pets will likely find any you missed!

Signs and symptoms of poisoning from chocolate can include vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, elevated temperature, seizures, and muscle rigidity. Get your pet to a veterinarian immediately.

Easter flowers can bring trouble
Both daffodils and Easter lilies are poisonous to cats if ingested. If your kitty begins to vomit, acts lethargic, becomes disoriented, and/or loses her appetite, get her to a veterinarian immediately. Untreated flower poisoning can result in kidney failure and death.

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Even if your cat gets Easter lily pollen on her fur and licks it off, she can experience kidney failure. Dogs are not affected by ingesting these plants.

Beware of Easter grass
The colored cellophane Easter grass you stuff into your baskets can be deadly to your cat or dog, and especially the former. When pets eat Easter grass, it can result in an obstruction (called a linear foreign body).

If your cat or dog has eaten Easter grass, the pet may vomit, strain to defecate and/or show signs of the grass hanging out of the mouth or anus. The strings can become entangled in your pet’s tongue or stomach and result in severe damage to the intestinal tract. You should seek help from your veterinarian as soon as possible.

Make a pet Easter basket
If you want to make a special Easter basket for your cat or dog, be sure to include items that are safe. For example:

  • Plastic eggs with catnip inside are okay for cats and can provide lots of fun
  • Stuffed toys should not contain any beans or similar objects nor have eyes or other items that the pet can detach and swallow
  • Get your dog a treat dispensing toy
  • Include homemade dog treats or cat treats in the basket

Here’s another tip: give the leftover hardboiled eggs to your pet. After you have used up the hardboiled eggs for as much egg salad as you can stand, you should know that your cat or dog can enjoy them as well.

Image: Flickr/raspence72