Break out the shamrocks, it’s St. Patrick’s Day! Every year, partygoers celebrate this century-old holiday with festive gatherings, alcohol, and of course, lots of the color green! While St. Patty’s Day may look a little different this year, it is still important to review these tips from the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) to ensure your four-legged friends stay safe this March 17th!
Alcohol: Adult beverages, especially green beer, have become a key element of St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. It can be easy for curious pets to lap up unattended beverages during the hustle and bustle of a party. If enough ethanol (the type of alcohol in alcoholic beverages) is ingested, your dog or cat can experience signs of drunkness, including difficulty walking, sedation, and stomach upset, and vomiting. To avoid this, the APCC recommends keeping all alcoholic beverages out of reach of your pets at all times. Pet owners might also consider keeping their animals in a separate, quiet room to avoid party stress altogether.
Shamrocks: A “shamrock” has become a well-known symbol for St. Patrick’s Day festivities. However, the common name “shamrock” can actually refer to several different plants. According to the APCC, Oxalis acetosella is the plant typically associated with the green-clad holiday. This plant can cause drooling, upset stomach, and immediate head shaking when ingested by pets. It can also cause low blood calcium and damage to the kidneys if enough is consumed. Should your dog or cat ingest any shamrocks this St. Patrick’s Day, call your veterinarian or the APCC (888-426-4435) immediately. For more St. Patrick's Day safety tips, visit the ASPCA Pro website.
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