The top 10 pills that could poison your petThese everyday people meds could kill your pet if you're not careful.
A huge chunk of the calls that pour into the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals' (ASPCA's) Animal Poison Control Center every year involve pets poisoned by people pills. About 40 percent of the animal poison control calls--25,000 cases--revolve around pets exposed to human medications.
"Pet exposures include pets eating dropped pills, owners giving the wrong medication to their pets, animals getting into pill cases or even breaking into cabinets," explains Tina Wismer, DVM, medical director at the ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center. "Just like with children, always store your medication where your pets cannot reach it because, unlike children, dogs will chew right through those bottles and eat whatever is inside."
Most common pills involved with poison control call complaints:
Related: The best dogs for men
The pill: Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin)
The problem: Ibuprofen is the most common human medication ingested by pets, thanks in part to many brands' sweet outer coating. What seems like a sweet treat to your pet could cause stomach ulcers or even kidney failure in an animal.
The pill: Tramadol (Ultram)
The problem: This pill can be beneficial to pets, but only at doses carefully prescribed by a vet. Too much tramadol can cause sedation or agitation, wobbliness, disorientation, vomiting, tremors, and possibly seizures.
The pill: Alprazolam (Xanax)
The problem: The anti-anxiety and sleep aid prescription could cause lethargy and trouble walking for your pet, but sometimes pets suffer the reverse effect and become extremely agitated. Large doses of alprazolam could send your pet's blood pressure dropping to dangerous levels or even cause collapse.
Related: Man's Best Workout Buddy
The pill: Adderall
The problem: Adderall is a combination of four different amphetamines and is used to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Not meant for a pet, it causes racing heartbeat, high body temperature, hyperactivity, tremors, and seizures in animals.
The pill: Zolpidem (Ambien)
The problem: Ambien helps people sleep, so they often set it out by their bed, where pets routinely swipe pills off of owners' nightstands. Zolpidem may make cats wobbly and sleepy, but most pets become very agitated and develop elevated heart rates.
The pill: Clonazepam (Klonopin)
The problem: Used as an anticonvulsant, anti-anxiety drug, or sleep aid for people, clonazepam causes low blood pressure, fatigue, trouble walking, or collapse in pets.
The pill: Acetaminophen (Tylenol)
The problem: This popular painkiller may cause liver damage or red blood cell damage that could deprive your pet of the oxygen needed to live.
Related: 3 ways pets help your health
The pill: Naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn)
The problem: This over-the-counter pain reliever may cause ulcers or kidney failure in dogs and cats.
The pill: Duloxetine (Cymbalta) is prescribed as an antidepressant and anti-anxiety agent.
The problem: When ingested by pets, duloxetine can cause agitation, vocalization, tremors, and seizures.
The pill: Venlafaxine (Effexor)
The problem: For reasons veterinarians still don't understand, cats love to eat these antidepressant capsules.
Top Tips for Protecting Your Pets
Always keep human medications away from pets unless you are specifically instructed by a veterinarian to give the medication.
Do not leave pills sitting on a counter or anyplace a pet can get to them.
Do not leave pill bottles within reach of pets.
Make sure pets aren't in the room when you're taking pills. "Dogs especially will devour anything that hits the floor, so taking pills in the bathroom or behind closed doors is the best way to avoid accidental exposure," Dr. Wismer says.
Always contact your veterinarian if your pet has ingested any medication not prescribed for them.
Never give your medication (or any medications prescribed for a two-legged family member) to your pet without first consulting a veterinarian.
For more information, check out Prevent Pet poisonings: Eliminate the 10 biggest pet threats in your home.
Photo: David Young-Wolff/Getty Images
pics, advice, info and stories for pet lovers
We asked veterinary experts and readers which breeds they think and if it is OK to shave longhaired pets in the summer.
If you're searching for a breed that may enjoy the company of a kid, we have some great suggestions for you.
When searching for the right dog to add to your family, your first instinct might be to bring home a tiny little thing that your kids can cradle in their laps. But we're here to remind you that the best fit for you may be a large dog breed.
Many breeds were developed to do work that required them to act independently. Those dogs tend to be smart, but as family pets, they may need more leadership and training than others. Ultimately, though, they’re worth it. Here are 11 dog breeds that tend to have independent personalities.
Many of us here at Vetstreet are fascinated by pets who have unique coats and cool shapes hidden in their markings. So we asked our Facebook fans to share pictures of animals that have interesting coloration, and you did not disappoint. From mustachioed cats to a horse of a different color, here are our 13 favorite photos of pets with cool coats.
We surveyed 284 veterinary professionals (including vets, veterinary technicians and office staff) to see which breeds they felt were most likely to chew something they shouldn't and wind up in the veterinary emergency room, and we've listed the top five answers below. Do you agree with their opinions? Which breeds would you add to the list?
This Fourth of July, Americans will celebrate with the sights and sounds of fireworks. While we love the pyrotechnics, it's important to remember that our patriotic midsummer spectacular is no holiday for many of our pets.
By Vetstreet Editors
It's Independence Day — and we're celebrating our freedom and everything American. Before you light up the grill or head out to catch the fireworks, take a moment to check out these fun photos of patriotic pups. We hope you have a wonderful holiday and, as always, remember to keep your pets safe.
You love him so much, but you put up with a lot for your pup.
There's no denying that cats are excellent companions, but sometimes they do something that leaves you scratching your head in total confusion. If you're used to dogs, cats' social interactions and the way they communicate can be very confusing. Yet it's these special behaviors, like affectionate head-butting and their penchant for cardboard boxes, that make us love them so much. To help you better understand your elusive feline, we rounded up 10 cat behaviors that people commonly consider mysterious. You'll find that many of these habits aren't weird at all for cats -- they're normal. Click through this slideshow to learn more about mysterious feline habits and what they mean.
Soldier the cat is now recovering thanks to a special oxygen mask used for reviving animals.