Since pets are a part of the family, it is natural for us to want to include them in the holiday festivities; however, keeping them safe should be a top priority when the bustling of Easter comes around.
1) Chocolate: Most pet owners know that chocolate is toxic to our canine and feline friends. Yet the Pet Poison Helpline reports “…during the week of Easter, calls to Pet Poison Helpline concerning dogs that have been poisoned by chocolate increase by nearly 200 percent.” During Easter-time, many chocolate eggs, chocolate bunnies, or even baking chocolate are left out where pets can reach and go unnoticed if they disappear. We recommend keeping track of any chocolate products in your home and to make sure that any children who are celebrating with your pet know not to share their candies.
2) Other Candies: Speaking of candies, most of them come with their own risks. Jelly Beans and Marshmallow-Peeps are very high in sugars that can make our pets sick. Many animals may also eat the wrappers in the process. The wrappers can cause damage to the digestive tract or even intestinal blockage (which requires surgery) when eaten. On top of all of these dangers, sugar-free candies usually contain xylitol and can cause seizures, liver failure, and hypoglycemia in our pets.
3) Easter Eggs: We already covered the dangers of chocolate eggs, but real and plastic eggs can also be hazardous. Hardboiled eggs left over from the Easter Egg Hunt spoil very quickly and can cause digestive issues in cats and dogs while plastic eggs may be seen as toys and accidentally chewed up and/or swallowed.
4) Easter Lilies and Easter Grass: These decorations may look great for your family Easter dinner, but both are extremely dangerous-especially to cats. Easter lilies (as well as many other species of lily) are toxic to our pets but cats are affected moreso than dogs. Every part of the plant, from leaves to petals and even pollen, are toxic to cats. If your cat is seen licking or eating a part of your Easter lilies, he or she should be taken to a veterinarian immediately. The danger of Easter grass comes from when it is eaten. The plastic shreds added to Easter baskets as decor can be mistaken for a toy and swallowed. This happens more often with cats than with dogs since cats tend to like string-like objects. Swallowing Easter grass can get tangled up inside your cat’s intestinal tract and lead to a major surgery to remove it.
With these tips in mind, your pet should be able to have a safe and fun Easter Sunday. Do you have any family traditions for the holiday that include your pet? Let us know in the comments below!