With flowers out in full bloom and baby animals appearing in the fields, Spring is a great season all round. It also brings with it Easter and the celebrations this entails; fun for all the family but some of the traditions associated with this holiday period can pose danger for your pet. Make sure you keep them safe and healthy by recognising the hazards and keeping your pets away from them.
Lilies are flowers largely associated with Easter, but unfortunately they are one of the biggest threats for your cat. They might look pleasant and harmless but these are highly toxic to cats and ingestion of any part of the plant (leaf, pollen, and petals) is considered to be toxic for cats and can prove fatal as a result of kidney failure. It is wise to be cautious with most flowers with your pet, but due to their tendency to shed their pollen lilies are especially dangerous. If your cat walks past a lily and its fur becomes contaminated with the plant pollen it can become ingested when your cat then carries out its normal grooming habits. For pet owners, it’s best to avoid buying lilies altogether if possible, or at the very least ensure they are in a room not accessible to your cat.
Another Easter threat for a curious cat is the artificial colourful grass often used to decorate seasonal baskets. Cats instinctively eat grass to help them regurgitate undigested material in their stomach; however, while artificial grass can appear similar to natural grass, its string like consistency makes it a hazard as it can become trapped in your pet’s intestines causing a blockage. Abdominal surgery may be necessary to remove this foreign body, therefore ensure any artificial plant is kept well out of reach and sight of your pet to avoid any possible incidents.
We’ve all been told countless times about the dangers of chocolate for pets, and Easter is another time when the sweet treat is readily available in egg form. As always, human chocolate should never be given to cats or dogs, with dark chocolate in particular being the most dangerous due to its high cocoa content. Fatal if ingested, with various symptoms including vomiting and diarrhea, it is always best to keep your Easter eggs away from places your pet can access and avoid leaving any leftovers lying around so they aren’t tempted. Why not buy them some dog friendly chocolate treats instead so they don’t miss out on all the fun! It’s not just chocolate that can be a hazard for animals; sugary treats and sweets can also cause dental problems and even increase the risk of diabetes in pets, so to be on the safe side if it’s meant for a human keep it that way.
During the holiday, if you do suspect that your pet might have consumed any of the above toxic substances, or notice them displaying any unusual symptoms, then contact your vet immediately for advice. Be wise when it comes to your pet and you can all enjoy a happy and healthy Easter!