Our Thornhill Vet wants to bring to your attention a recent incident which demonstrates the importance of making sure your pet is safe from unknown dangers.

Cat Given a Treat An owner of three cats was given a sample of treats from a well-known pet food manufacturer by a stranger handing out sample bags while walking along the waterfront adjacent to the Burlington Ribfest.  The treats were consumed by his cats and within hours exhibited signs of distress.  One of the cats died and the other two subsequently had to be euthanized.

The manufacturer of the cat treats had nothing to do with the Burlington Ribfest and it was subsequently discovered that the packaging given to the owner was not used in any sampling promotion.  It was later discovered that the treats were laced with Acetaminophen (Tylenol) which is toxic to dogs and extremely toxic to cats.

Lethargic DogOur Thornhill Vet wants you to be informed of the signs of acetaminophen toxicity.  The clinical signs of Acetaminophen poisoning in dogs are:  progressive depression, vomiting within a few hours of ingestion, abdominal pain, and dark-coloured urine.  Death can occur within 2-5 days.  In cats, the signs are more severe.  The effects develop within 1-2 hours of ingestion and include anorexia, salivation, vomiting, depression, dark chocolate-coloured urine and swelling of face or paws.  Death can occur within 18-36 hours.  The prognosis for cats is poor but more favourable in dogs.  If you see any signs, please bring your pet to see our Thornhill Vet.

Dog Handed TreatThis incident illustrates that one should be extremely careful when confronted by someone giving out so-called sample bags of pet food.  You should not accept bags of pet food or treats from anyone you either do not know personally or has not identification indicating that they represent a pet food manufacturer.  It is also useful to know that it is extremely rare for pet food manufacturers these days to give out sample bags of their products.

If your pet is suffering from any of the symptoms listed above, please call us at 905-731-1225 or visit our website www.summeridgeanimalclinic.com or our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Summeridge Animal Clinic.