As I was enticed to get my hands dirty in the warm soil with my dog, Mia enjoying the sun on her gleaming coat (she had just been groomed and gotten her "stuff" on: our groomer's special coat conditioning treatment) it prudent to discuss some pet friendly points to ponder. When we start our gardening and landscape projects stay away from toxic plants that could be dangerous to your pets.
When planning garden projects review a comprehensive list of plants that are toxic for cats and dogs at the ASPCA website www.aspca.org. Some of the most widely used spring and plants that are potentially dangerous for pets include:
Another danger is cocoa bean shell mulch which is popular with gardeners who want to conserve moisture and suppress weeds without that funky smell of traditional mulch (I'm always challenged to find the not too stinky smelling stuff!). Since it is made from the husk of cocoa beans and chocolate is toxic to animals causing muscle tremors and vomiting you're best advised to choose other more safe options.
And, with fleas and tick, those pesky parasites starting to cause problems remember to keep stored pesticides away from pets. Also, use the correct product for the pet you are treating: dog products can be toxic when used on cats causing death and make sure you are using the proper weight category product for your dogs. Just because you can buy a product without a prescription doesn't NOT ensure safety. Best to ask your pet's veterinarian for guidance and product selection.
Avoid slug baits which are among the most toxic things on the market! Alternatives which can include placing beer in a saucer can be effective unless the dog or cat decides to eat the slugs and drink the beer-which can happen with dangerous effects:alcohol poisoning does happen in this type of secondary exposure.
So, with some infomed choices we can all enjoy our yards and garden with our pets safely. Time to wash off my hands and Mia's paws...