Accidents, mishaps, and calamities happen throughout the year, but certain types of emergencies affect pets during specific months. For example, chocolate poisonings spring up each Halloween and Valentine’s Day, while antifreeze exposure is a focus in the winter. This time of year, it only makes sense to discuss the ways that fall pet safety tactics can impact your pet’s health, security, and wellbeing.
Clean it Up
Many homeowners take the weeks after Labor Day to tackle backyard or garage duties. Sure, it’s more fun to have your pet nearby while you’re cleaning out the garden shed, weeding, or treating the lawn, but it’s best to keep the following tips in mind:
- Confine your pet to the house until well after completing your task.
- Properly store any yard and garden chemicals or products (fertilizer, rodenticide, insecticide, snail/slug bait, etc.) so your pet can’t get to them.
- The removal of rotten fruit, pits, some berries, loose branches, and even leaves are all part of a good fall pet safety routine.
- Keep your compost bin sealed or contained.
- Discourage your pet from exploring the taste of wild mushrooms before the first frost.
Antifreeze, brake fluid, and engine coolant products are necessary for cars, but the central chemical in them (ethylene glycol) is extremely toxic to pets. It has a sweet flavor, which compels animals to lick up as much as they can, but a repulsive aftertaste (as you might imagine). Just a small sample of this chemical can poison the brain, liver, and kidneys beyond repair.
Again, store these bottles securely and wipe up any drips, spills, or stains. Consider choosing products with propylene glycol (a safer alternative, but not without its own side effects).
Change in Routine
It’s going to start getting dark much earlier, possibly curtailing your nightly walks. Don’t let your pet get into a seasonal slump! Instead, provide outdoor gear with reflective materials, and reward him or her for keeping up with an exercise routine.
While at home, you may decide to decorate for the season. Be sure to limit your pet’s exposure to string lights, lit candles, decorative corn/gourds, and other fall decor.
Fall Pet Safety
Lastly, with school starting up again, don’t allow backpacks, lunch boxes, or purses on the floor or in view. Chocolate, xylitol-sweetened gum, candies, baked goods, and various medications (ADD/ADHD pills, inhalers, birth control, etc.) are all potential health hazards for a pet.