As well as keeping your pets warm and safe during cold and inclement weather, some foods and plants are toxic to your dogs and cats and are especially available during the holidays surrounding Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Foods to avoid for dogs:

Chocolate– contains theobromine and caffeine. Symptoms include agitation, vomiting, diarrhea, tachycardia, and seizures. Toxic signs may show up later due to chocolate’s ability to be retained in the stomach for up to 12 hours and signs lasting for greater than 17 hours.

Raisins, Currants, and Grapes– As little as 10 grapes or 3 raisins can cause toxicity in some smaller dogs. The toxicity causes kidney shutdown and failure with signs of vomiting within 1-3 hours of ingestion, diarrhea, abdominal pain and distention, central nervous system depression and acute kidney failure.

Plants to Avoid for Dogs:
Sago Palm- All parts of the plant are toxic with the seed being the most toxic. Toxicity is an acute hepatic (liver) necrosis with only a 30-40% survival rate. Severe clinical signs include gastrointestinal hemorrhage, hepatoxicity and possible long term cardiotoxicity.

Plants to Avoid for Cats:
Lillies– Leaves, petals, pollen, and even water form the plant are all toxic to cats. Examples of the lily family that are toxic include easter lily, tiger lily, and asiatic lillies. Non toxic forms are calla lily, peace lily, peruvian lily, and lily of the valley which are not true lillies. Toxicity is manifest by vomiting, anorexia, and depression initially followed by dehydration and renal failure.

Onions, Garlic and Chives– Oftentimes found in baby foods as onion powder or “natural” flea control products containing garlic. These plants cause