Woman’s Day (Australia)


Indulging your fur friends can do more harm than good


With Easter just around the corner, it’s important to be aware that some festive favourites can be toxic for pets. Here’s what to avoid!

CHOCOLATE “Chocolate is poisonous to dogs and cats because it contains the chemicals methylxant­hines, in particular, theobromin­e and caffeine,” says Pet Circle veterinari­an Dr Belinda Stancombe. “If you are having an Easter egg hunt at your home, just make sure to keep your dog or cat away from it until it’s done and make sure all eggs have been found.”

Symptoms of chocolate poisoning include diarrhoea, vomiting, hyperactiv­ity, tremors, seizures and bradycardi­a (slow heart rate).

The darker the chocolate, the more theobromin­e and caffeine there is. White chocolate contains almost no theobromin­e, but it should still be avoided due to being high in fat and sugar, while dark chocolate contains the most.

If your pet has eaten chocolate, you can use the toxicity calculator at petcircle.com.au to determine the risk. If your pet shows any symptoms, see a vet straight away.

HOT CROSS BUNS These often contain raisins or sultanas, which can cause kidney failure in cats and dogs. If your pet consumes grapes, raisins or sultanas, see a vet immediatel­y.

EASTER LILIES Common in flower arrangemen­ts, Easter lilies (and all other true lilies) are deadly to cats. If you have a cat, avoid having lilies in your home and if poisoning occurs, see a vet immediatel­y.


Often found in chocolate slabs, macadamias are highly poisonous to cats and dogs, so see your vet if your pet consumes any.

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