Pills as a Deadly Danger to Dogs

by Sue Matthews, © 2003

This is an article about the potentially deadly danger to dogs from human or pet medications left within their reach. The main article is written by Sue Matthews and is used with her permission. I will add below it some material from an Emergency Vet and will add a few comments from others as to how they handles problems.

Pills as a Deadly Danger to Dogs

by Sue Matthews, © 2003

As many of us age and develop health issues that require medication, it's vital that we remember to keep our medications out of the reach of our curious Bouviers, just as we would from curious small children. Medications that we take for granted as humans can have devasting results when swallowed by our pets.

It's as important, if not more so, to make sure that any visitors or house guests are equally conscientious about keeping track of their medications, and if necessary, take steps to assist them in safeguarding medication in order to protect our dogs and other pets.

I'm reminding everyone about the dangers of medication because one of my very favorite Bouviers in the world, a much loved, incredibly sweet 6 year old boy who should have had many more happy years ahead of him died very suddenly and completely unexpectedly a few days ago. It was only the day after the death that his family learned that the elderly relative who had been visiting them had a history of dropping medications on the floor and being oblivious to it, and when a search of the bedroom he had been sleeping in uncovered a variety of pills on the floor. While we don't have a complete list of the medications this person had, we're in the process of getting the list. From the few medications we are aware of, the signs that the dog developed so suddenly now finally make some sense if ingestion was indeed what occurred.



The National Animal Poison Control Center (NAPCC) provides a 24-hour emergency hotline that every dog owner should keep in plain sight. The hotline numbers are (800) 548-2423 and (900) 680-0000. The 800 number requires a credit card number and charges a flat $30; the 900 number s $2.95 per minute for a maximum of $30.

The NAPCC is a non-profit service of the University of Illinois and is the first animal-oriented poison center in the United States. Since 1978, it has provided advice to animal owners and conferred with veterinarians about poisoning exposures. The NAPCC's phones are answered by licensed veterinarians and board-certified veterinary toxicologists. They have specialized information that lets the experienced NAPCC staff make specific recommendations for your animals; plus over 250,000 records are in their database.

When you call, be ready to provide:

Household products and plants are the most common culprits in poisoning cases. In the case of poisoning from household products, many companies cover the costs the pet owners incur when it has been determined that their product is responsible for the reaction.



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site author Pam Green copyright 2003
created 8/17/03 revised 8/20/03
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