Easter Dangers for Pets

Mar 26, 2016

Such a pretty cat, but there's danger in that Easter basket!
Credit Alisha V (Alisha Vargas) [Flickr]

We like to share our holiday celebrations with our furry family members, but like so many other occasions this one poses serious risks for our pets.


At Easter we all like baskets full of candy and pretty Springtime decorations. But like most holidays, there are dangers to our pets. The ASPCA has a list of what they call the Top 5 Easter Toxins.

At the top of the list is Chocolate. The Pet Poison Helpline gets more calls at Easter about animals who get sick from eating chocolate than any other holiday, including Halloween and Christmas. After all, who thinks about guarding the Easter basket from a pet? And what about plastic eggs hidden in the yard that were not found during the egg hunt, but an animal’s nose can sure find it. Be careful to keep all chocolate away from your pet.

Number two on the list is the Lily plant. If a cat munches on any part of the plant, or even drinks the water from the vase, it could pose a danger to your feline friend, resulting in kidney failure or worse.

Back to the Easter basket – number three on the ASPCA list is the plastic grass in the basket. Pets like to play with it and even eat it, which can block their intestinal tract. Just a little inexpensive Easter grass could lead to a vet bill for surgery.

Fourth on the list we find table foods that can be poisonous to pets, including grapes and raisins, onion, garlic and macadamia nuts. Don’t let your pet eat those – or anything containing them.

Last on the ASPCA list of Top 5 Easter Toxins is herbicides. Because this is the time of year when folks are anxious to spruce up the yard, they may drag out the weed-killer. After using herbicides make sure to let it dry before letting your pet outdoors to play.

One item not on the ASPCA’s list but definitely on mine is Xylitol, an artificial sweetener found in a wide variety of candy, gum and snacks. Just a couple of sticks of gum containing Xylitol could cause fatal liver failure in a dog.

As winter ends and Spring arrives, it’s great to celebrate with springtime treats and decorations. Just remember to keep it safe for all members of the family, including the four-footed ones, when you’re speaking of pets.