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11 things you should get rid of if you have a dog

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By Sophia Mitrokostas, INSIDER

  • Popular indoor plants like philodendron, certain types of lilies, and sago palms are actually toxic to dogs.
  • That liquid potpourri might smell yummy, but it has the potential to cause serious oral ulcers in your dog if ingested.
  • If you're a dog, eating a single mothball can be fatal.
  • Pets who ingest the highly toxic substances contained in rodent traps might not be able to be saved by medical intervention because some modern rodenticides have no known antidotes. 

Adding a dog to your family can bring endless amounts of joy and fun, but it also means you may have to get rid of certain items from your home. Some common household objects and products can be dangerous or even fatal to canines. 

Here are a few things you should consider getting rid of if you have a dog. 


Certain houseplants can be toxic for dogs

Now that you have a furry companion, you might want to consider rehoming that houseplant. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, popular indoor plants like philodendron, certain types of lilies, and sago palms are actually toxic to dogs

If you don't want to get rid of them completely, try placing them out of reach on high window sills or shelves. 


Liquid potpourri can cause oral sores

That liquid potpourri might smell yummy, but it has the potential to cause serious oral ulcers in your dog if ingested. According to the AVMA, air fresheners of all types should be kept well out of reach or donated to friends without canines. Mothballs can cause brain injury and death in dogs


Mothballs can cause brain injury and death in dogs

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If you're a dog, eating a single mothball can be fatal. That's because most commercial mothballs contain naphthalene, a chemical that can trigger brain tissue swelling, kidney and blood cell damage, seizures, coma, and even death, according to the AVMA. 

Consider using natural cedar products to keep your clothes safe from bugs and smelling fresh.


Candy bowls are hazardous to dogs

You may want to have your favorite sweet treats within each reach, but leaving candy out poses a risk to your dog. The Blue Cross for Pets lists on their website that candy sweetened with xylitol can cause everything from severe digestive upset to death, and chocolate contains theobromine, which can be fatal to dogs. The darker the chocolate, the more theobromine it usually contains. 

Ditch the tabletop candy dish and store your snacks in a secure cupboard instead. 


Mousetraps can injure or poison pets

If you have a dog, mouse and rat traps can lead to injured paws and snouts or even fatal poisoning. According to the AVMA, some modern rodenticides have no known antidotes. This means that pets who ingest the highly-toxic substances contained in rodent traps might not be able to be saved by medical intervention. 


Pets shouldn't be left with portable heaters

Portable heaters are a popular way to keep homes snug in the winter but pose a significant fire and injury hazard for pets. According to The People's Dispensary for Sick Animals, dogs can suffer burns if they make contact with the hot metal of the heater, and smaller dogs may be injured if the heater is knocked over on top of them. 

Furthermore, dogs who gnaw at cables have the potential to be electrocuted or start a fire. If you just can't bear to part with your portable heater, make sure you never leave your dog alone with it and store it securely away after use to prevent injury. 


Unsecured cables and wires shouldn't be left around the house

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The PDSA also lists that pups who like to nibble on everything shouldn't be allowed to roam a home where there are unsecured cords and cables. Though it's impractical to completely remove all electronics and cords from your house, you should take steps to wrap, lift, or bundle cords in such a way that they are inaccessible to pets. 

If not, chewed cables can electrocute dogs or spark house fires. 


Bags of fertilizer should be kept out of the house

Your pet is unlikely to eat enough fertilizer off the lawn to cause fatal poisoning, but getting into a bag of fertilizer stored in the house or garage can trigger a serious medical emergency. The AVMA lists on their website that the chemicals in most plant foods and fertilizers are highly poisonous to dogs, so these items should be kept out of the house and in secure containers. 


Some adhesives can cause fatal stomach or throat problems

Household glues usually have tamper-proof tops to thwart curious children, but dogs are liable to chew right through the packaging itself. This is a serious problem, as the AVMA reports that several brands of expanding wood glues, or any adhesive containing diphenylmethane diisocyanate, can form a rapidly swelling ball of glue in your dog's throat or belly. This can cause permanent damage or suffocation, so get rid of excess craft glue or store it safely away. 


Sprayable weed killers can be hazardous to dogs

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Adding a dog to the family means you might want to switch your weed-control strategy. According to the AVMA, chemical treatments that are sprayed over entire lawns to prevent weeds can cling to dogs' fur and cause medical problems if licked off or absorbed through the skin. 

Instead, dog owners may want to opt for spot-treating weeds while making sure to keep pets and small children away from the treated areas for the amount of time indicated by the manufacturer. 


Antifreeze is deadly to dogs

If you live in a cooler climate, antifreeze is likely an important part of your car maintenance arsenal. However, antifreeze or coolants that contains ethylene or propylene glycol are extremely toxic to pets and humans alike according to the AVMA. Rather than keeping a large amount of antifreeze in your home or garage, try to buy just enough to top up your engine as needed.

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