If you love chocolate as much as you love dogs, Easter is probably one of your favorite times of the year.
But those yummy chocolate bunnies and eggs in your Easter basket are no treat for your pooch – in fact, they could make him very sick.
WebVet warns pet parents to keep their dogs away from these potentially poisonous Easter foods and décor.
Be extra careful to keep dark and baking chocolate out of your dog’s reach, since they contain more theobromine and are especially toxic.
2. Plastic Easter Basket Grass
“The plastic component of Easter grass is non-digestible, and can get tangled in your animal’s intestines,” WebVet warns. “This can lead to a blockage and potential perforation. If ingested, the grass can cause choking or become lodged inside the stomach or intestines, creating an obstruction. Signs of obstruction are loss of appetite and vomiting.”
3. Jelly Beans and Other Candy
Popular Easter basket fillers like jelly beans, marshmallow chicks and malted-milk eggs can seriously upset your dog’s stomach if he eats them. Also be sure to keep sugarless gum and any candy containing the artificial sweetener Xylitol far away from your dog – it’s so poisonous that even if he only ingests a small amount, within 30 minutes his blood sugar could drop dramatically, he’ll begin vomiting and he may have difficulty standing or walking. In worst-case scenarios, Xylitol can cause seizures, internal hemorrhaging and liver failure.
4. Easter Eggs
When you’re hiding hard-boiled eggs for an Easter egg hunt, be sure to keep track of where you place them. Should your dog uncover an egg days, weeks or months (yuck!) later, he could get very sick if he eats it.
5. Candy Wrappers
Don’t be a litterbug – throw aluminum and plastic candy wrappers into a trash can that your dog can’t access. “Many pets (especially dogs and cats) are naturally drawn to the texture, bright colors and crinkly sounds wrappers make and often unintentionally consume them while playing,” WebVet notes. “Consumption of these items can cause intestinal disturbances and even an intestinal obstruction in your animal.”
6. Live Bunnies
While they’re not actually toxic for dogs, bunnies as Easter gifts are not a good idea. If you’re thinking about getting one, WebVet urges you to think again: “Rabbits are not toys, nor are they low-maintenance pets. They require the same level of care as a dog or cat and need plenty of room to play – and hop. While they can be cuddly and affectionate, they can also become easily frightened when held or confronted by other animals. Unfortunately, most rabbits purchased as Easter gifts end up either abandoned on the streets, which is a sure death sentence, or in shelters.”
7. Easter Lilies
If you also have cats in your household, be sure to keep them far away from Easter lilies, which can cause kidney damage and even death if your kitty ingests any part of the plant.