Although the weather in Winter can be wet and stormy, if your Fur Baby loves the beach or walking along the river, just be aware that sometimes the things that get washed up on the shoreline with those crashing winter waves can be really dangerous. For example, my Sister-in Law, Bev, recently had a big scare with her beautiful dog, Bodhi, when he came across a beached Blowie (aka Pufferfish or Toadfish). They have a highly toxic neurotoxin called Tetrodotoxin and if you dog bites or eats one, it can rapidly cause paralysis which can be life threatening. Thankfully Bodhi had quick attention and is now fully recovered!
But it’s not just when you’re out and about that danger can lurk for your precious Fur Baby even rugged up and snuggled all comfy and warm at home can cause concern. Did you know that many everyday foods and products such as lollies, chewing gum, breath mints, toothpaste, spreads (eg peanut butter), cakes, muffins, biscuits or pastries can have a sugar substitute called Xylitol (aka E967 or Birch Sugar) and this is highly toxic to dogs - so make sure you check your labels and keep any nasties well out of reach of those cheeky paws!
You would always protect your Fur Baby from getting into any medicines. But with Winter coughs, colds and sore throats you may have a pack of throat lozenges laying around and not really consider them “medicine” but they certainly are! Some of these can have anti-inflammatory drugs in them, and these are a big NO, NO for your Fur Baby as they can cause gastrointestinal problems from an upset tummy and diarrhea to serious stomach and bowl ulceration, kidney damage and in large doses even neurological side effects. They can also contain a local anaesthetic which can be toxic for your Fur Baby causing lethargy, weakness, seizures and even affects the heart.
Be watchful of your dog's temperature, you don't want them to be cold, but you also don't want them to overheat! So make sure if you are using indoor coats, snuggle sacks, hot water bottles or have the gas fire, or reverse cycle heating on, that they are not in danger of getting burnt or being too hot!
So enjoy the Winter snuggle time with your four legged Fur Baby and always keep them out of harms way!
Waggy Tails and Dirty Paws