If ingested, anti-freeze (ethylene glycol) is often lethal -- even in very
small quantities. Because many dogs and cats like its sweet taste, there are an
enormous number of animal fatalities each year from animals drinking
anti-freeze. Poisoning from anti-freeze is considered a serious medical
emergency which must be treated by a qualified veterinarian IMMEDIATELY.
Fortunately, the Sierra company now offers a far less toxic form of
anti-freeze. They can be reached at (888)88-SIERRA.
When a dog's internal temperature drops below 96 degrees F (by being exposed to
cold weather for long periods, or getting both wet and cold), there is a
serious risk to the dog's safety. Small and short-haired dogs should wear
sweaters when taken for walks during cold winter weather. Any sign that a dog
is very cold -- such as shivering -- should signal the owner to bring the dog
Ice-Melting Chemicals and Salt
Ice-melting chemicals and salt placed across sidewalks and roads can cause
severe burning to your dog's footpads. Whenever possible, avoid walking your
dog through these substances, and wash off his footpads when you return home.
There are also products available such as Musher's Secret which can be applied
to your dog's footpads prior to going outside, that may help reduce the pain
that is often caused by road salt and chemicals.
Tinsel and Other Christmas Tree Ornaments
When ingested by a dog (or cat), tinsel may cause obstruction of the intestines,
and the tinsel's sharp edges can even cut the intestines. Symptoms may include:
decreased appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, listlessless and weight loss. Treatment
usually requires surgery.
"Collar safety tip for dogs who live outdoors:
While we discourage dog owners from keeping their pets exclusively outdoors, we
realize that some people do. Professional groomer Nancy Gourley of Alaska has
cautioned us that many dogs that live outdoors in cold climates develop full
neck burns from wearing metal choke collars in cold weather, because steel
attracts the cold and burns the skin black. Additionally choke collars should
never be worn by an unsupervised dog. A leather or nylon flat buckle collar
(that is checked periodically) is a much safer collar for dogs that live
outdoors in any climate. (Both ID and rabies tags should be attached to the
flat buckle collar.)