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News and Information about Dogs, Cats, and Pet Products

Before the holidays and everything gets to chaotic in the house, take a quick look over these 10 common holiday items that are poisonous to our pets and make sure you don’t have any of them laying around.

  1. Christmas Trees and Wreaths – Christmas trees can cause nausea and vomiting, but are only mildly toxic, but if the large amounts of needles are consumed, this can lead to possible blockage or a GI tract getting punctured. The water from the tree could also contain toxic fertilizers too.
  2. Lilies – These beautiful flowers are extremely poisonous to cats. Just a small leaf or flower petal can cause sudden kidney failure. Daffodils are also poisonous to both cats and dogs.
  3. Grapes, Raisins and Currants – All of these can cause kidney failure in dogs, so don’t leave the fruitcake out for the dogs!
  4. Poinsettias – Most of us have heard that poinsettias are extremely poisonous to our pets, well, this is actually a hoax…you don’t want your pets to eat them, but it is only mildly toxic and will just cause nausea and vomiting.
  5. Chocolate and Cocoa – The chemicals in chocolate and cocoa can be highly toxic to dogs and cats. Small amounts will cause usually lead to vomiting and diarrhea, but a large amount can lead to seizures.
  6. Alcohol – Don’t leave your drinks around for the pups to lick out of…alcohol can be extremely toxic to pets. Their blood sugar and blood pressure can drop severely, cause respiratory issues and all can lead to death.
  7. Xylitol – This is a sugar substitute found in sugarless gum and candy. Cats can usually tolerate Xylitol, it is very toxic to dogs and can lead to low blood sugar and liver failure and then to death.
  8. Holly and Mistletoe –  Holly and mistletoe can vary on how toxic it is, but most are mild, again causing nausea and vomiting and some may cause heart issues.
  9. Fatty Foods – Your dogs and cats may have a taste of chicken or turkey from time to time, but don’t over do it with the fatty foods.  Eating too much can lead to pancreas and liver problems in cats and dogs.
  10. Liquid Potpourri and Snow Globes – We all love our homes smelling amazing and it always gets us in the holiday spirit, but if your pets take a drink of it it can lead to chemical burns and trouble breathing. Snow Globes can contain harmful chemicals, like antifreeze, that is very very poisonous and often leads to death in even small amounts.

Other items to look out for: 

  • Candles can make your pets curious, you don’t want them to get knocked over or get burned.
  • Wires, batteries, plastic and glass can all be deadly if ingested.
  • Tinsel can make cats very curious, but if ingested can lead to blockages and ruptures and expensive surgery.

If you think that your pet may have been poisoned, take them to the veterinarian immediately or call the Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435. By calling you will be billed a consultation fee.

Have a wonderful and safe holiday season!!

 

 

In my family, Halloween is one of our favorite times of year. The trees are colorful, the kitchen smells like apple cider, and the cutest little ghosts and goblins wander around the neighborhood doing the best to look frightful!

10431249_791800060866672_1675487833336778634_oBut while we humans are having such a fun time, that’s often not the case for our furry friends.  The sound of a repeatedly ringing doorbell can send some dogs and cats scrambling for cover. Unfamiliar holiday visitors can cause excessive anxiety. For these situations, the Thundershirt and Happy Traveler, by Ark Naturals can be a huge help! See our past blog: Thundershirt + Happy Traveler = Stress Free Summer to learn more about these two products.

The scarier aspect of Halloween, from a pet perspective: the fact that tiny trick-or-treaters may decide to “share” some of their Halloween goodies with your four-legged friends. Even when the trick-or-treaters aren’t so tiny, their treat baskets can often wind up unattended, or in easy-to-reach places.  I can tell you, that when this happens the frantic trip to the emergency vet is NOT pretty.

So, as Halloween is just around the corner, it is worth remembering some especially menacing food culprits to keep away from our beloved pets:

Chocolate ~ In ANY form, this is extremely toxic to your dog or cat. It contains high levels of caffeine and theobromine – both of which are hard for cats and dogs to process.  The darker the chocolate, the more dangerous.

Grapes and Raisins ~ Humans often think of these as healthy Halloween alternatives. But for dogs and cats — they will cause kidney failure.DogToxins

Xylitol ~ This no-calorie sweetener is often used in sugar-free gum and certain baked products. In many dogs and cats, it can cause a sever, and sudden, life-endangering drop in blood sugar levels.

Ethanol (including Ethyl Alcohol, Grain Alcohol or Drinking Alcohol) ~ Even small amounts of this compound can cause life-threatening toxicity in dogs and cats – and don’t forget, flavor syrups and raw yeast bread dough often contain it too.

At Two Bostons we have several pet-safe alternatives for your dogs and cats to still enjoy Halloween Festivities.  Check out our bakery case, Puppy Kisses or other sweet treats!

Almost everyone knows that chocolate is bad for dogs…But is it really true, and what does it really do?  Well with Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, I thought I would clear the air for you!

YES, Chocolate really is poison to dogs.  I know that it is difficult to believe that something so amazing could be so deadly to our four-legged friends.

So why is it so bad you ask? Chocolate contains theobromine.  This is a naturally occurring stimulant found in the cocoa bean, and that is what is poisonous to dogs.  Theobromine affects the central nervous system, the heart muscle and it increases urination.dog-eating-chocolate

What are the signs? First know that the longer the chocolate is in your dog’s system, the more theobromine they will absorb.  Within the first few hours, the symptoms includes vomiting, diarrhea, or hyperactivity. You will begin to see an increase in heart rate, this is bad because it causes arrhythmia, restlessness, hyperactivity, muscle twitching, increased urination or excessive panting.  These symptoms can lead to hypothermia, muscle tremors, seizures, coma and even death.

But how much Chocolate? Just like most things…Not all chocolate is created equal.  The age and relative health of your dog is going to be a factor on how severely your dog will react to eating chocolate.  Here is a breakdown of the different types of chocolate poisoning for a generally healthy, average age dog:

 

  • White Chocolate: 200 ounces per pound of body weight.  It takes 250 pounds of white chocolate to cause signs of poisoning in a 20 pound dog; 125 pounds for a 10 pound dog.
  • Milk Chocolate: 1 ounce per pound of body weight. Approximately one pound of milk chocolate is poisonous to a 20 pound dog; one-half pound for a 10 pound dog.  The average chocolate bar contains 2 to 3 ounces of milk chocolate.  It would take approximately 2-3 candy bars to poison a 10 pound dog.
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate: has a similar toxic level.  Sweet cocoa: 0.3 ounces per pound of body weight.  One-third of a pound of sweet cocoa is toxic to a 20 pound dog; one-sixth of a pound for a 10 pound dog.
  • Baking Chocolate: 0.1 ounce per pound body weight.  Two one-ounce squares of bakers’ chocolate is toxic to a 20 pound dog; one ounce for a 10 pound dog.  Source

 

two-bostons-carob-puppy-kissespawsitively-gourmet-hearts-pink-and-brownWe do have a SAFE alternatives to satisfy your dogs chocolate cravings on Valentine’s Day and everyday! Our Bakery Treats and our most popular treat, Puppy Kisses, that look and taste like chocolate actually are made with, Carob.

Carob has the same great chocolate taste to our dogs, without the fear!  Carob is actually a nutritious alternative as it contains 8% protein and traces of vitamin A, B, B2, and B3 and D.  Carob is high in phosphorous, potassium, magnesium, iron and calcium. These vitamins and minerals are vital in the promotion of healthy bones, teeth, eyes and coat.

I hope that this will clear up any questions about Dogs and Chocolate…if you have any other questions always feel free to ask one our Team Members! Happy Valentine’s Day!

MBB_Profile

In my family, Halloween is one of our favorite times of year. The trees are colorful, the kitchen smells like apple cider, and the cutest little ghosts and goblins wander around our neighborhood doing their best to look frightful.

But while we humans are having such a fun time, that’s often not the case for our furry friends. The sound of a repeatedly ringing doorbell can send some dogs and cats scrambling for cover. Unfamiliar holiday visitors can cause excessive anxiety. For these situations, the ThunderShirt, Ark Naturals Happy Traveler Chewables, and other aids can be a huge help – and I’ll talk about why (plus how/when to use them) in “Part 2” of this post, later this week.

For now, let’s consider one of the scarier aspects of Halloween, from a pet perspective: the fact that tiny trick-or-treaters may decide to “share” some of their Halloween stash with your very best four-legged friends. Even when the trick-or-treaters aren’t so tiny, their treat baskets can often wind up unattended, or in easy-to-reach places. I can tell you from firsthand experience that when this happens, the frantic trip to the emergency vet is NOT pretty.

 

DogToxins

Many treats that we consider totally safe — even healthy — for humans can be extremely toxic to our four-legged family members!

So as Halloween approaches, it’s worth remembering some especially menacing food culprits to keep away from our beloved family pets:

Chocolate
In any form, this is extremely toxic to your dog or cat. It contains high levels of caffeine and theobromine – both of which are hard for cats and dogs to process. The darker the chocolate, the more dangerous. If you want a totally safe, chocolate-like alternative, just come into any Two Bostons store for Carob Puppy Kisses to help your best friend celebrate fearlessly. Carob is free of these problematic compounds.

Ethanol (including Ethyl Alcohol, Grain Alcohol or Drinking Alcohol)
Even small amounts of this compound can cause life-threatening toxicity in dogs and cats – and don’t forget, flavor syrups and raw yeast bread dough often contain it too. To let your pets in on the festivities, stop by any Two Bostons bakery case for unique, healthy and deliciously decorated treats.

Grapes and Raisins
Humans often think of these as healthy Halloween alternatives. But for certain dogs and cats — and it’s impossible to predict which ones — they’ll cause kidney failure. In my house, we say better safe than sorry and head over to Two Bostons for some Stella & Chewy’s Carnivore Crunch or Stella & Chewy’s freeze-dried kitty options. P.S. ~ Did you know? Through 11/11/13, you can get 20% OFF any Stella & Chewy’s product at any Two Boston’s store! Now that’s an extra-sweet treat.

Xylitol
This no-calorie sweetener is often used in sugar-free gum and certain baked products. In many dogs and cats, it can cause a severe, sudden, life-endangering drop in blood sugar levels. Do your pups have a sweet tooth, like mine? Introduce ’em to Sam’s Yams Big Boys  – which are great for big chewers and also a really effective way to help clean teeth and gums.

Do you have a favorite pet-safe treat you share with your four-legged family members for Halloween? Tell us about it below!

TwoBostonsTreats

Two Bostons specializes in a wide range of treats that are unique, festive, tasty and totally safe for all the canines and kitties in your life.

 

 

With Easter candy running rampant in most of our homes we must take extra precautions to make sure our fur friends are safe.

As an educated dog owner, you know that a healthy diet is imperative for your dog’s well being. You also know that feeding your dog appropriate table scraps or “people food” is not the worst thing in the world. However, there is one bit of information that you should not EVER ignore…Chocolate really is poison to dogs.

I know that it is difficult to fathom, that something so delicious to us could be so deadly to our fur buddies. But it is true. Heed the warnings.

I actually, unfortunately, know this from experience. Mr. Pig (long story on the name) was a pure breed German Shepherd dog we had before Diesel. He was a very curious and rambunctious dog, who liked to get into everything. I used to have to put a lock down on the house before leaving because I couldn’t crate him as he would figure out ways to wedge himself under the bars and hurt himself.

One day, I wasn’t as diligent as I thought (although in my defense, the chocolate was ON TOP of our microwave which was ON TOP of our 5 foot tall microwave stand) and he got into a large amount of milk chocolate. I was terrified when I came home and saw the wrappers all over the floor. I immediately called my vet. She told me to try to induce vomiting, which isn’t as easy as it sounds when dealing with a dog, and to get him in to her as soon as I could. I ended up having his stomach pumped. I was terrified that my negligence would kill my dog. It was rough. In the end, he ended up being fine, but let me tell you, that was THE MOST expensive chocolate I’ve ever had!

So what is it about chocolate that is so bad for dogs? Well, chocolate contains theobromine. This is a naturally occurring stimulant found in the cocoa bean, and that is what is poisonous to dogs. Theobromine affects the central nervous system as well as heart muscle and increases urination.

How can you tell if your dog has eaten a toxic dose of chocolate? Well within the first few hours, the symptoms includes vomiting, diarrhea or hyperactivity. The longer the chocolate is in your dog’s system, the more theobromine he will absorb. You will begin to see an increase in heart rate. This is bad because it can cause arrhythmia, restlessness, hyperactivity, muscle twitching, increased urination or excessive panting.

This can lead to hypothermia, muscle tremors, seizures, coma and even death.

Know this…not all chocolate is created equal. And, the age and relative health of your dog is going to be a deciding factor on just how severely your dog will react to eating chocolate. The following chart gives you an idea of chocolate poisoning for a generally healthy, average age dog:

  • White chocolate: 200 ounces per pound of body weight. It takes 250 pounds of white chocolate to cause signs of poisoning in a 20-pound dog, 125 pounds for a 10-pound dog.
  • Milk chocolate: 1 ounce per pound of body weight. Approximately one pound of milk chocolate is poisonous to a 20-pound dog; one-half pound for a 10-pound dog. The average chocolate bar contains 2 to 3 ounces of milk chocolate. It would take 2-3 candy bars to poison a 10 pound dog.
  • Semi-sweet chocolate has a similar toxic level. Sweet cocoa: 0.3 ounces per pound of body weight. One-third of a pound of sweet cocoa is toxic to a 20-pound dog; 1/6 pound for a 10-pound dog.
  • Baking chocolate: 0.1 ounce per pound body weight. Two one-ounce squares of bakers’ chocolate is toxic to a 20-pound dog; one ounce for a 10-pound dog. Source

There is a safe alternative for your pooch. Carob is a substitute you can offer your dog as a treat without the fear and worry that chocolate possesses. It is actually a nutritious alternative as it contains 8% protein and traces of vitamin A, B, B2, B3 and D. Carob is also high in phosphorous, potassium, magnesium, iron and calcium. These vitamins and minerals are vital in the promotion of healthy bones, teeth, eyes and coat.

Next time you want to give your pal a treat, consider our Puppy Kisses. They are our most popular treat! The trio contains carob, yogurt, and peanut butter discs and the flavors are sold in individual containers as well.

Please learn from my mistake and keep your chocolate well out of reach. For the sake of everyone’s health and safety, we should really only see the words “chocolate” and “dog” together in the following context: