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Preventing Pet Poisoning This Spring: Essential Tips for Pet Owners

Greg Knows Dogs provides Spring pet safety tips and pet-friendly gardening practices to help protect your dogs from springtime hazards and toxins.

As Spring unfolds and gardeners emerge from winter hibernation, the allure of outdoor activities like weeding and planting beckons. However, amidst the fresh breezes and blooming plants, there lurks a silent danger for our dogs and puppies: pet poisonings.

Regrettably, the chemicals you use to make your lawn and plants grow, may be toxic to your pet. And your plants may be dangerous. You know those gorgeous tulips you planted in the fall? The bulbs contain toxins that can cause intense gastrointestinal irritation, drooling, loss of appetite, depression of the central nervous system, convulsions and cardiac abnormalities. 

Did you get an Amaryllis for Easter? These contain toxins that can cause vomiting, depression, diarrhea, abdominal pain, hyper-salivation, anorexia and tremors. For a complete list of plants that are poisonous, click here.

Every year, thousands of dogs and cats fall victim to accidental ingestion of household or outdoor products, leading to tragic consequences. The chemicals we use to nurture our lawns and gardens can pose serious threats to our beloved pets. 

Here are some common household and outdoor products that can be harmful to pets:

Insecticides or Pesticides:

These chemicals, often used to combat flea and tick infestations, can cause respiratory issues, nausea, vomiting, and seizures in dogs. If applying insecticides to your lawn, keep your dog indoors for at least 24 hours.


Products like glyphosate and Roundup, when ingested, can induce vomiting in dogs. Keep your dog and his belongings indoors while treating your lawn.

Slug, Snail Bait, and Rat Poison

Tempting to dogs but deadly, these products can contain substances like metaldehyde, leading to tremors, seizures, and even death. Opt for less toxic alternatives like products containing ferric phosphate.


While grass fertilized with lawn products typically poses minimal risk, ingesting fertilizers directly from the bag can be harmful to pets. Keep your dog indoors until the product has been absorbed into the lawn.

To ensure your dog’s safety, it’s wise to create a pet poison first aid kit. The Pet Poison Helpline offers comprehensive guidance and resources for pet owners, available 24/7 for a nominal fee.

Greg Knows Dogs hopes these tips help you and your dogs enjoy a great and healthy start to Spring!

Greg Knows Dogs provides in-home dog training in Virginia’s Bayview, Chelsea, Ghent, Larchmont and Ocean View neighborhoods.