Animals are naturally inquisitive and young animals especially frequently ingest inappropriate materials. Below is a brief introduction to such dangers

Toxins in cats


  • All parts of lilies are toxic to cats
  • Causes severe and acute kidney failure
  • Can be ingested directly or  through pollen contamination being ingested after grooming

Human medications

  • Painkillers are especially toxic to cats

Liquid pot pourri

  • Will cause burning to the mouth and also respiratory and neurological signs

Glow sticks

  • Usually ingested as pet plays with the stick
  • Causes drooling , gagging and retching
  • Will also cause skin irritation
  • Easy to spot chemical to wash it off it glows in a dark room
  • More irritant than toxic

Tinsel/string or ribbon

      • Severe damage to the intestinal tract
      • Requires surgery to remove if it becomes a “linear foreign body”


      • Very palatable to cats- very sweet taste
      • Causes calcium crystals to form in the kidneys and kidney failure within a couple of days
      • Antidote is only of any use if given within 3 hrs of ingestion
      • Poor outlook

Flea preparations

      • Incorrect applications of dog preparations to cats
      • Also cats grooming dogs within the household

Toxins in Dogs

Puppies are very nosy and inquisitive and will frequently ingest the most inappropriate items. Items such as socks and underwear are frequently on the missing list ! Such items may pass but equally may cause an obstruction which can be life-threatening.

dog and chocolateAlways contact the surgery for advice if you think your pet has ingested any unsuitable material. Below is a list of materials which are frequently ingested some of which should cause concern and some less so

Toxic- seek immediate advice:-

  • Slug pellets
  • Chocolate
  • Human medicines
  • Plant bulbs
  • Raisins, onion, avocado, garlic and liquorice
  • Rat poison

Low toxicity

    • Polystyrene
    • Silica gel
    • Wax candles or crayons
    • Holly
    • Matches
    • Antacids, oral contraceptives or HRT
    • Bluetac
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