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Are you planning to do a little gardening this spring? If you have pets, here a few things to take into consideration:
Slug Bait (Metaldehyde)
This dangerous toxin is used to kill slugs and snails in the garden but it is very appealing to animals as it tastes sweet. Metaldehyde is a very serious nervous system toxin. Please use more natural methods such as diatomaceous earth or manual removal of slugs if you have pets or wild animals in the garden. If you even think your pet may have been exposed, call a veterinarian immediately.
Mulch and Fertilizers
The cocoa bean variety of mulch should be avoided if you have pets as it smells delicious but can potentially be toxic. Apart from being inappropriate for consumption, it may also contain varying degrees of theobromine which is the toxic chemical found in chocolate. Fertilizers contain varying levels of nitrogen, iron, and phosphorus which may be toxic when consumed by pets. Keep fertilizer packages safely sealed and tucked away from pets. Follow manufacturers directions for pet safety. Apply shortly before a rainfall to dilute the product and wash into the soil. Some of the more dangerous fertilizers are the most attractive to pets. These include bone meal, blood meal, feather meal and fish meal.
Lilies are extremely toxic to cats. Please avoid this plant indoors and outdoors if you have cats. They contain a very dangerous kidney toxin. If your cat consumes any part of a lily plant, please call a veterinarian immediately. Some other plants to be aware of in the garden include tulips, hyacinths and daffodils (especially the bulbs), rhododendrons, foxglove (digitalis), and hydrangeas. For a more complete list, we suggest you refer to the ASPCA Poison Control.
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