Pets are very clever animals and one must consider a range of safeguards, and take precautionary measures to ensure their safety around the home. They are adventurous and very curious, especially at opening cabinet doors, closets, and getting additional food from automatic feeders. Crown Majestic Products is constantly seeking new ideas and solutions in improving their feeders to meet customers’ needs. We recently introduced a “Snap-on” guard which is currently available (free of charge by request from customers), that prevents pets from gaining access to additional food. This part will be implemented as a standard feature in our next line of feeders. Though the ideal feeder is a customized unit to suit individual customers, we strive to incorporate as much of our customers’ suggestions into our units. Hopefully, our next line will have a stainless steel insert tray, that can be removed easily for sterilized cleaning and is dishwasher safe. Also, we are hopeful that a more flexible time program can be implemented – whereby customers can choose the individual times for meals, instead of the feeder automatically selecting the times based on the first feeding time and the number of meals selected in a day. These are only a few of the improvements slated for our short term objectives.
We are aware that pet medications are integral in keeping pets healthy. This is why we have recently introduced a Medical and Health section, that carries brand name medical supplies for keeping pets healthy. We should emphasize the importance of safeguarding all medications – including those consumed by humans – out of reach from pets. There was a recent article published by*Dr. David Visser which we thought demonstrates the importance of safeguarding all medications that pets can gain access to. The article states that when you think of pets getting poisoned, you may think of antifreeze and rodent bait, and those are serious threats, but you may not know that many calls to poison hotlines involve pets that have been exposed to medications that are intended for human use. Dr. David Visser reports that pets can ingest medications belonging to their family members, and also medications that are intended for the pets as well – with awful consequences.
The most common medications that pets are exposed to are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as Advil, Motrin, Tylenol and Aleve. There is a wide margin of safety for many of these medications in people, but just one dose in pets can cause severe stomach ulcers or perforation (burning a hole in the stomach wall). In cats, the ingredient of Tylenol causes a fatal blood disorder.
This is an important category to discuss because many times people reach for these medications to solve minor aches and pains or stop a child’s fever. It is simply too dangerous to make those assumptions with pets.
The next most common medication poisoning is antidepressants. This category includes names like Effexor, Cymbalta, Prozac, and Lexapro. While some of these antidepressant drugs are occasionally used in pets, overdoses can lead to serious neurological problems such as sedation, incoordination, tremors and seizures. Some antidepressants also have a stimulant effect leading to a dangerously elevated heart rate and blood pressure. Cats seem to enjoy the taste of Effexor and often eat the entire pill. Unfortunately, just one pill can cause serious poisoning.
The poisoning list also includes ADHD medications like Concerta, Adderall and Ritalin which are potent stimulants. Also on the list were sleep aids, some of which are known to cause liver failure in cats. Birth control medications containing estrogen can be toxic to the bone marrow of pets.
You have to be careful about how you store medication:
• Never leave loose pills in a plastic Ziploc bag; the bags are too easy to chew into. Make sure
visiting house guests do the same, keeping their medications high up or out of reach.
• If you place your medication in a weekly pill container, make sure to store the container in a
cabinet out of reach of your pets. Unfortunately, if they get a hold of it, some pets might
consider the pill container a plastic chew toy.
• Never store your medications near your pet’s medications; veterinarians frequently receive calls
from concerned pet owners who inadvertently give their own medication to their pet.
• Hang your purse up. Inquisitive pets will explore the contents of your bag and simply placing your
purse up and out of reach can help to avoid exposure to any potentially dangerous medication(s).
• And finally, never administer a medication to a pet without first consulting your veterinarian.
1. *The medical article was that of Dr. David Visser who is a Medical Director of veterinary practices in
Michigan and Indiana, and is a Certified Veterinary Journalist and member of the Veterinary News