National Poison Prevention Week is March 16-22nd. So I did a little research on the top 10 that are reported to the Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) every year. Number one does not surprise me at all.
1. Human prescription medications. More then 20% reported were pets getting into medicine cabinets or on top of bedside tables. This is the seventh year in a row that prescription medications has been at the top of the list.
2. Over-the-counter medications. Over 25,000 reports came in with pets ingesting herbal and other natural supplements, over 6,000 different products were reported.
3. Insecticides. 10% of the cases reported were that of backyard/open-space products being used. Following the directions on the label is so important or look for more natural fertilizers.
4. Household products. This list is large and includes anything from cosmetic products, cleaning supplies, paint and laundry detergent. The same rule should apply for pets as we would do for young children in the house. Store all household chemicals up on shelves.
5. Human foods. we are reminded of the foods that are toxins daily, chocolate, onions, raisins, alcohol etc.
6. Veterinary medications. Believe it or not 7% of pets will ingest the entire bottle of their own medication if not kept out of reach, especially if they know what is in that bottle also means a piece of cheese or yummy treat goes along with it.
7. Chocolate. As listed above, more then 30 calls a day come in with pets that have ingested chocolate. Remember the darker the chocolate the more dangerous it is.
8. Plants. This is more focused to our cat loving families, cats will taste any household plant.
9. Rodent products. approximately 7,000 calls came in about pets ingesting chemicals used to kill mice, rats ants, all the pesky vermin we try to keep out of our homes.
10. Gardening products. I think this runs right along with number 3. Keeping gardening spry and lawn sprays up and out of harms way.
With spring cleaning around the corner, this is a good time to organize medications and put all household items that could harm our beloved pets up on shelves. If you think your pet has come in contact with a poison please call: the Animal Poison Control Center's 24 hour hotline at (888) 426-4435.