Pet owners warned of winter dangers

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Dog lying in front of a fire

When winter arrives, pet owners bring their pets into the warm comfort of their homes.

The RSPCA warns that there are many hazards in homes that can harm or even kill pets. Indoor plants, for instance, can pose a deadly risk.

“Many common household plants can be toxic to animals if eaten, and can cause serious illness or even death,” says RSPCA Victoria CEO Dr Liz Walker.

“Lilies are known to be one of the more dangerous plants and are particularly toxic for cats, so if you own a feline it’s best to steer clear of them altogether.”

It is important to check the safety of any plant before letting your pets have access to them. The RSPCA says your local vet should be able to provide more information if you’re unsure.

“Signs your pet might have eaten a poisonous plant can include vomiting, lethargy, drooling and seizures,” Dr Walker says.

“When taking your pet to the vet with suspected poisoning, it is a good idea to also take any material involved, such as chewed-up plant matter, so your vet has a better idea of what they’re treating.”

Other home hazards include candles, uncovered fireplaces and carbon monoxide leaking from gas heaters.

Carbon monoxide is extremely dangerous for humans as well. The safest way to protect your home and loved ones is to have your gas heaters serviced and checked regularly and install carbon-monoxide alarms as you would a smoke detector.

Recognising potential problems for your pet inside the home will keep them safe and warm with you this winter.

For more information, visit the RSPCA Knowledgebase website.  

Written by RACV
June 19, 2017