Easter is a great time to be with family, indulge in chocolate and participate in Easter egg hunts. Easter is also a time we need to take a few extra precautions to keep our pets healthy and safe.

Chocolate

Easter comes with many traditions including baskets filled with chocolate eggs, and of course the great easter egg hunt with chocolate eggs hidden around the house or in the backyard. However, as we all know, chocolate is a very toxic product for pets as chocolate contains a chemical called theobromine, as well as caffeine, and should be kept out of sight and out of reach. Dark chocolate and unsweetened, bitter chocolate are the most toxic for your pet. Signs your pet ingested chocolate can include hyperactivity, diarrhea, vomiting, elevated or abnormal heart rates, or even seizures. If you suspect your pet has consumed chocolate – call the vet immediately.

Candy

We know of the dangers that chocolate poses to your pets, but many sugar-free candies and gum contain xylitol, a low-calorie sugar substitute that is highly toxic to dogs. Xylitol can cause a steep drop in your dog’s blood sugar, leading to seizures, and can possibly put your dog into liver failure. Be sure to keep candy completely out of reach of your pets.

Lilies

Lilies are the most common flower found in homes during Easter but they are also highly toxic to cats. All parts of the lily can actually cause kidney failure or even lead to death for your furry friend if not treated properly. The safest thing you can do for your cat is to keep these lilies out of your home and yard.

Easter Basket Hazards

Plastic Easter eggs, foil wrappings, and small toys are popular fillers for Easter baskets. The small items we fill our baskets with can be choking hazards for our pets and are also known to block their intestines.

Easter grass, while it may be the perfect filler for your basket, can also cause irritation or obstruction of your pet’s intestines when ingested. Shredded paper and green fabric are great alternatives to plastic grass and also better for the environment.

Tip: When planning an Easter egg hunt for the little ones, write down all the places you hid those eggs to help you keep track – ensuring nothing is left behind for your furry friend to find.

With a little preparation, you, your family and your pets can all have a happy and safe Easter weekend.

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