Easter baskets stuffed with plastic straw and filled with chocolate eggs make children happy, but pets can like them too – and the result can be deadly for dogs and cats.
This Easter the Central California Animal Disaster Team is reminding pet owners that there are safety tips to keep pets healthy during family festivities.
Chocolate candies in Easter baskets can be fatal to a dog or cat. And dark chocolate, which has gained favor in recent years as a “healthier” choice, is more dangerous for animals. The caffeine-like stimulant in chocolate can cause vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity, fast pulse – and even seizures.
“In addition, the fat content in candy and chocolate can cause harm to a pet’s pancreas,” the disaster team says.
Next on the be-careful list: Plastic pink, blue or green grass make pretty Easter baskets, but they also can look yummy to dogs and cats. If ingested the plastic can block the intestines and cause vomiting and dehydration. Another non-edible – the plastic foam egg – also can cause damage to a pet’s digestive tract.
Keep them safe and hydrated.
Central California Animal Disaster Team
The cute stuffed animal can be another hazard. Tiny eyes and other items on the toys can lead to choking or blocked intestines in pets, the animal team says. It recommends keeping stuffed animals in a safe place.
Another Easter staple in many homes is the lily, but the poisonous plant can be fatal, especially to cats. A lot of plants, in fact, can be dangerous for pets, so the team recommends checking the organization’s list of toxic and non-toxic plants/flowers before buying.
For some families, Easter includes baby chicks and rabbits. The team reminds people that chicks grow into chickens and baby rabbits can outgrow pens. They are not throw-away toys and should not be given as Easter gifts or re-gifted. The holiday should be a celebration, the team says, and not lead to more animals being abandoned after the holiday novelty wears off.
Finally, it’s easy to forget the little things that matter during holiday excitement. Make sure pets have fresh water, the disaster team says. “Keep them safe and hydrated.”