Put Some Spring in That Paw!

Spring has sprung, leading many of us to turn our thoughts to Easter celebrations, spring cleaning and home improvement projects. But the change of season can be precarious for curious pets or their unknowing owners. Before you launch into your decorating regimen, seasonal projects or outdoor ventures, take a moment to learn about the most common springtime hazards for your furry friend.
 
Easter Treats and Decorations
Keep Easter lilies and candy bunnies in check—chocolate goodies are toxic to dogs and cats, and lilies can be fatal if ingested. Kitties also love to nibble on colorful plastic grass, which can lead to digestive woes.
                                         
                                         Window Screens
Many pet parents welcome the breezy days of spring by opening their windows, unknowingly put their pets at risk. This is especially true of cats, who are likely to jump or fall through unscreened windows. Be sure your all of your screens are sturdy and safe before allowing your pets to take in the warm breezes.
 
Car Travel  
We all know dogs love to feel the wind on their furry faces, but the bed of a pick-up truck or the window of a moving-car is a dangerous spot for your pup. Flying debris and abrupt stops or turns can cause unwanted injury or infection. Pets in cars should always be secured in a crate or wearing a seatbelt harness designed especially for them.
 
Spring Cleaning
Spring cleaning can be a great way to get rid of some common household dangers like poisonous bugs and debris your pet could ingest, but be sure to keep all cleaners and chemicals out of their reach. Almost all commercially sold cleaning products contain chemicals that are harmful to pets. Be sure to read and follow directions for proper use and storage of these products.
 
                                              Home Improvement
Paints, mineral spirits and solvents can be toxic to your pets. Read all labels thoroughly to see if a product is safe to use around your furry friends. Also, be cautious of physical hazards like nails, staples, insulation, blades and power tools. It’s usually best to confine your dog or cat to a room during home improvement projects, just make sure they have plenty of food, water and stimulation to keep them happy!
 
Yard Work
Fertilizers, insecticides and herbicides keep our plants and lawns healthy and green, but their ingredients aren't meant for canine or feline consumption. Always store these products in inaccessible places and follow label instructions carefully. The ASPCA has a full list of garden tips.
 
Poisonous Plants
Growth is a sure sign of spring but beware, many popular springtime plants (Easter lilies, rhododendron and azaleas) are highly toxic to pets. The ASPCA also has a comprehensive list of toxic and non-toxic plants for your home and garden.
 
Allergies
Pets can be allergic to foods, dust, plants and pollens, too. Allergic symptoms in dogs and cats can range from sniffling and sneezing to serious reactions. If you suspect your pet has a springtime allergy, make a visit to your veterinarian as soon as possible.
 
                                                      Bugs
Showers bring flowers, but flowers bring bugs! Make sure your pet is on year-round heartworm preventive medication and a flea and tick control program to combat the dangers of insects. Your veterinarian can recommend a plan designed specifically for your pet, and Morris Animal Inn can assist with Frontline applications.
 
The Outdoors
Warmer weather means more trips to the park, longer walks and an increased risk of pet wandering. Make sure your dog or cat has been microchipped for identification and wears a tag imprinted with your home address, cell phone and any other relevant contact information. Canines should wear flat (not choke) collars and sturdy leashes with the ability to extend for your pet’s enjoyment, and reign in when necessary. Come take a look at the spring collection of UpCountry collars in our lobby boutique!
 
By following these tips and allowing us to care for your pet while you can't, you and your pet are sure to fully enjoy the spring season!