Tips to Keep Your Pets Safe on Valentine’s Day

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Every special occasion that has humans doing things out of the everyday ordinary poses a threat to pets if we don’t take precautions and pay close attention to keeping them safe.  Valentine’s Day is one of those occasions.  Because this holiday is famous for lots of chocolate, candles, and flowers, just to name a few things, veterinarians find this time of year to be among the times they see an increase in unplanned visits.

Both dogs and cats are very curious when it comes to things that are not part of their daily lives.  If things that can harm them are left accessible, you could end up in the vets office instead of celebrating the most romantic time of year!  Here are tips to keep them safe and you enjoying Valentine’s Day:

1. Chocolate is the most popular Valentine’s Day gift, from boxes of it to things dipped in it, but it is also number one on the list of foods to avoid giving your pet.  Chocolate has methylxanthines and when ingested can cause diarrhea, panting, vomiting, excessive thirst and urination, abnormal heart rhythm, hyperactivity, tremors, seizures, and even death.  Make sure to keep any and all forms of chocolate completely out of reach of your pets.

2. Roses and Lillie’s are among the most common flowers to receive on Valentine’s Day, but both can cause major problems in cats.  All varieties of Lillie’s are potentially lethal, with symptoms including upset stomach, vomiting, or diarrhea if ingested.  Roses are harmful to both dogs and cats because of the thorns on the stems.  If your pet gets a hold of the stem, the thorns could severely damage the inside of their mouth, throat, and internal organs.

If you receive Roses or Lillie’s for Valentine’s Day, make sure you place them completely out of reach of your pets.  If you have cats you might even want to remove the Lillie’s from the arrangement, removing the threat completely!

3. Candles are also among the most common parts of a Valentine’s Day celebration but are harmful to both dogs and cats.  If ingested, the wax can cause symptoms including choking, upset stomach, vomiting, or diarrhea.  In addition to ensuring candles are not eaten, you must remember to blow out the flame, as cats are famous for walking in front of it and catching their tails on fire!

The most important part of pet ownership is ensuring you keep them safe.  Holidays pose additional threats to their well being so we hope these tips prevent your pet from an unplanned trip to the vet or worse.