The ASPCA has reminded us pet lovers that certain valentine treats can be harmful to our furry companions. There are two prominent ones this year. The first one is of course chocolate. The surprise one is lilies, as in the flower variety. According to the ASPCA's poison control experts, all plants in the genera lilium are toxic to cats. They also recommend dethorning roses and quickly soaking up any spilt wine as these two rascals can cause severe consequences if drank or played with.
This reminded me of the time my eight pound terrier and I visited my parent's home one Halloween afternoon. We came in with all smiles until my pooch started crunching on something under the sink. Quickly fishing in her mouth, I found what was left of one of my father's prescribed medications. Kel had broken the capsule open and the powder coated her tongue.
Panicking, I started shouting for my mom to help me figure out what pill my dog had eaten. We had a casing and many bottles to go through. After much hysteria on my part I found the number for the emergency vet clinic and made a fast call. Mom and I had narrowed it down to two different medicines. I told the kind woman on the emergency line what had happened and what we thought she had taken.
The woman calmly asked me a few questions and went immediately to check what the proper response should be. She came back telling me that it was best to get Kel to throw the heart medicine up. This meant using hydrogen peroxide. She told me to give her a teaspoon and wait about 10-15 minutes. If nothing happened, give her another dose.
Have you ever tried getting a vile tasting liquid down a dog's throat? Hydrogen peroxide isn't pretty, and my dog eats everything and anything. When she squacked at this remedy I knew it must taste like poison. If only she had thought that about the pills she so gaily chomped.
Somehow, with two people holding her and a lot of shaky fingers, I got at least some of the first teaspoon down her throat. We put Kel down on the floor and waited. Ten minutes never felt so long. After nearly the cut-off mark, Kel started the neck roll. I took her outside and prayed for vomit.
It happened and I have never been so relieved in my whole life. So now whenever we visit grandma and grandpa we make sure all the pills are up on the counter where they belong. As for chocolate and lilies, well we've never had a problem with that.
To learn more about the ASPCA's Valentine tips please visit www.aspca.org.