Back to School: Keeping Your Pet Safe
School has started. Daily routines are settling. Soon the neighborhood kids and new school friends will be spending the afternoon at your house. Weekend sleepovers will have your living room filled with sleeping bags and toys. Science projects, art supplies, homework, backpacks, & lunch boxes will fill the house. Brushing up on some pet safety tips could prevent an emergency!
Worrying about what toxic items our pets can get into applies to more than just holidays. Many of the school supplies your kids use every can be harmful to your pet. According to the ASPCA's Back to School Safety Tips for Pets, "If a pet gets into a backpack and pulls out art materials, a good place to start in assessing risk is to ask the owners about an ACMI seal. These seals will typically either read AP (approved product) or CL (cautionary label)."
Here is a list of items that could potentially cause choking or a blockage if ingested by your pet.
Grapes & Raisins
Plastics in lunch bags & backpacks
Small toys such as action figures
Glue (sticks or bottled)
If you suspect your pet has ingested a toxic substance or an item from the list above, contact your veterinarian or local animal emergency clinic immediately.
Leaving Doors Open
Kids often leave doors open. Pets are known to escape out an open door. Reviewing house rules for the safety of your children and their friends is important, but also reviewing the house rules regarding your pet's safety is also just as important. Remind your children and their friends to close doors to the outside to keeps the pets safe and while you are it, remind them not to feed the pets people food. Kids pretty are smart and they usually know not leave a door open, but sometimes they may forget. Be honest with your children and their friends about what could happen to Fido if he runs into the street or that Fluffy would drown if she falls into the pool.
Introducing Children to Your Pet
Dog are generally good with children, but with the number of dog bites on the rise educating your children and their friends on how to greet and interact with your pet may prevent bites and injuries. Be clear and direct. Tell them exactly where Fluffy does not like to be touched. Tell them that they are not to get near Fido while he eats. Kids can be loud and may scare a timid pet, so it may be best to leave Fido or Fluffy in a quiet room during a birthday party or a weekend sleepover. Doing so may prevent bites or injuries to a child or injuries to your pet.
Written by Julie Gajewski, CPPS. Julie has been pet sitting and working in the veterinary industry as both a technician and hospital administrator since 1997. She is a pet business consultant and a guest blog writer for pet sitters across the world. She lives in Florida with her husband and furry children, 2 Pugs and 4 cats. You can find out more about Julie by visiting her website.