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Spring Dangers!

Thursday 22 March 2018

Flowers & Bulbs.

Seeing daffodils blooming is often one of the first signs that we are coming out of winter. Although their bright colour can really cheer up a garden or room, care should be taken if you have dogs. Daffodil bulbs, along with tulip, hyacinth, amaryllis and narcissus bulbs, can cause nasty reactions if eaten, and can even be fatal in some cases.

Keep dogs away from cut flower that have come from bulbs.  Make sure unplanted bulbs are stored out of reach, and keep your dog away from areas with planted bulbs, especially if they have a history of digging.
 
To celebrate spring, Easter is often associated with cut flower bouquets. While beautiful, these often contain lilies, which are highly toxic to cats. In this case, the best way to avoid lily poisoning is just to not bring lilies at all into a house which has cats. Many cat owners simply bar them from the house, which is an effective way to remove the risk. 
 

Spring & Easter Goodies

Hot cross buns are an Easter staple, but did you know the raisins in them can be deadly to dogs. Grapes, and all their dried forms including raisins, sultanas and currants, can cause kidney failure in our canine friends.  There is no specific toxic ‘dose’ of grapes – every dog reacts individually, and some dogs have gone into serious kidney failure from a single grape. 
 
This means dogs who have eaten grapes are always taken seriously by your vet, and if you think your dog may have eaten grapes, or any raisins or similar (think about cereals, breakfast bars and fruit cakes, as well as hot cross buns!) always call your local vet for advice. 
 
Chocolate is plentiful around Easter, as we all know. This may be great for us, but can be a disaster for our pets. Chocolate is toxic to all our common household pets, but toxicity is most commonly reported in dogs as they generally have the most access to our human foods.
 

Bugs, Bees & Wasps.

While new life is all around us during spring, sadly this bloom also extends to some of our more unwelcome species. Fleas, ticks and worms all start to grow in number around Easter as the weather warms up. This increases the chances of your pet coming into contact with them, and potentially getting infected. A parasitic infection can be very uncomfortable for your pet, and for more serious cases, such as dogs infected with lungworm, or ticks carrying Lyme disease, an infection can even kill. 

Just like us, our pets can have a range of reactions to bee and wasp stings. At their least dangerous, stings are merely a painful inconvenience. At their worst, however, extreme immune reactions can cause serious swellings – if this is around the head and neck, constriction of the airways and restriction of breathing can be a major concern. Dogs and cats are especially at risk, due to often having an interest in catching and playing with wasps and bees they may find. Especially during spring when bees and wasps are sluggish and easier prey, pets may find themselves stung on their feet and around the head and inside the mouth especially. 

 

Allergies.

Dogs, and in rarer instances cats, can develop seasonal allergies to pollen's. These often manifest as part of a clinical problem called atopic dermatitis, but can occur in isolation. Pets with a seasonal allergy often itch and scratch, and can damage the skin, leading to sores and infections. Please consult your vet if you believe your pet as a suspected allergy.

If you believe your pet has ingested anything harmful, then please call and consult your vet immediately for further help and advice. 

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