Helpful Pet Tips for the Fall Season

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#1. Watch out for ticks in fall

Just because fall is here doesn’t mean that ticks aren’t still lurking. Many species of ticks are active even into the winter and can survive the first frost.

Get rid of tick hangouts such as leaf and garden litter, where ticks can sometimes survive even into winter.

Check your pets for ticks whenever they have been outside

Continue using tick control and repellent products, especially if you spend a lot of time outdoors.

#2. Beware rat poison and other rodenticides

Fall is the time of year when mice, rats, and other rodents begin to invade the home. Be careful when it comes to mouse traps and rodenticides like rat and mouse poison. Unfortunately many poisons that are currently on the market can be very harmful to dogs and cats. Direct ingestion can be deadly.  Talk to your veterinarian about methods of pest control that are safe for your pets.

Even if you don’t have a rodent problem or choose to deal with mice and rats humanely using live traps, you never know what methods your neighbors are using. The carcasses of rodents that have been killed by rodenticides can also be dangerous, so if you see the telltale tail dangling from your pet’s mouth, make sure he drops it and keep an eye on him, and if you think your pet has eaten any of the rodent, contact your veterinarian immediately.

#3. Mushroom Madness

In some areas of the country Fall is prime season for mushrooms. While most  are perfectly safe, there’s a small percentage that are highly toxic to both pets and people. Check your backyard for mushrooms and remove any questionable fungi. If you think your pet has gobbled up a toxic mushroom, contact the ASCPA Animal Poison Control Center immediately!

 

#4. Up the Feedings

Cold weather means more energy is needed to stay warm, check with your veterinarian to see if your pup may need more food in the winter.

#5. Watch out for antifreeze toxicity

In preparing for the winter months ahead, people tend to use fall to winterize their cars. This often involves changing fluids such as antifreeze, which can be deadly for pets.

The ethylene glycol in antifreeze that has a sickly-sweet smell that is appetizing to pets. That’s why it’s important to clean up spills immediately and make sure your pets steer clear of the garage while you’re working on your vehicle.

 

#6. Beware chocolate and hearty foods

Halloween and Thanksgiving are prime fall holidays that can pose food threats for dogs. It is important to make sure your pets don’t get into any foods that can make them sick; for dogs, this means chocolate, grapes, and raisins are off limits because they are toxic.

Just because some foods aren’t technically considered toxic to pets doesn’t mean they’re safe. Rich, high-fat foods can cause stomach problems such as diarrhea and gastroenteritis and even more serious conditions like pancreatitis. Also, think about small food items that can be choking hazards, like turkey bones around Thanksgiving.  Talk to your veterinarian to make sure you know what’s safe and what’s not.

The good news is there are plenty of good fall foods like pumpkin which is a happy and healthy treat for your pet.

 

#7. Be careful with decorations

It seems almost everyone likes to decorate for fall and winter holidays. While this festive time looks great these decorations can pose a threat to our pets. Loose wires can electrocute, not to mention the toxic substances and choking hazards that are abound. Keep your pet away from outdoor displays ensuring they have a decoration free space to roam.