Toys4pets Products

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

May 2010 Newsletter

These pictures are of a baby fox that we rescued for the wildlife department. It had its head caught in a chain link fence. We had to take the fence apart to free it.

One of our customers and our viewer ask us to research and tell other pet owners about Cocoa Mulch. Here is the information that we found:

Cocoa Mulch which is sold by some of the big home improvement stores has been found to be harmful to both dogs and cats. The product contains the chemical called Theobromine. This outdoor product is used around the outside of the house and in gardens and dogs are especially attracted to this because it smells like chocolate. We have already wrote an article about not feeding your dog chocolate. (see November Newsletter)

Your pet can ingest this toxic product and could die from it. There has already been one confirmed death from a pet eating this product. Make sure that your pet is safe by making sure you or any of your neighbors do not use Cocoa Mulch around the house or in your garden that is not protected by a barrier.

The death from this product happened to a dog named "Moose", a three year old Labrador Retriever, owner by a Minneapolis couple. The couple had a necropsy done on Moose at the University of Minnesota. The vet found the cocoa shell in Moose's stomach which had traces of theobromine in it.

Cocoa bean shells are used to make chocolate. This can cause your pet to have severe convulsions and die up to 17 hours later. Analysis of some pet stomach contents and the cocoa bean shells, has revealed the presence of a lethal amount of theobromine.

Here are some other alerts that could potentially be harmful to your pet. Some common poisons include antifreeze, household chemicals, mold, mothballs, mistletoe, and wild mushrooms. We have talked about some of these items in past newsletters, please go back and refresh yourselves. Here is a list of some lesser known dangers for pets.

  • Grapes and Raisins: Can cause acute renal failure in dogs.

  • Polyurethane Glue: Dogs may be attracted to either the smell or taste of glue, and may try to chew on the bottles. If swallowed, the glue expands to form a mass in the stomach and may need to be surgically removed. Gorilla Glue will do the same thing.

  • Macadamia Nuts: Raw or roasted macadamia nuts cause painful muscle weakness, tremors, and paralysis. Dogs can be affected by eating as few as six nuts, and may also be affected by macadamia butter.

  • Onions, Chives, and Garlic: Contains thiosulphate, which is toxic to dogs, cats, and horses.

  • Cooked bones: After cooking, bones become brittle and may splinter. These splinters may cause chocking, or may even puncture or become embedded in the intestinal tract or stomach. Some that are especially dangerous: turkey and chicken bones.

  • Coffee: Any beverage containing caffeine can cause a dog's heart to race, sometimes causing seizures.

  • Xylitol: Sugar free candies and other products containing xylitol. This ingredient is extremely harmful to dogs, with even small amounts causing liver damage and death.

  • Fruits: Cherries, apricot and apple seeds, pear seeds, peach pits, plum seeds. These seeds contain cyanogenic glycosides which causes cyanide poisoning.

  • Chocolate: Cooking chocolate and cocoa powder are the most toxic, followed by dark, semi-sweet, and milk chocolate. The smaller the pet the higher the toxicity rises, or the larger the quantity ingested. Keep all types of chocolate out of your dog's diet.

  • Corn Cobs: Can cause potentially fatal intestinal blockage.

  • Tobacco: Cigarettes, nicotine patches, and other tobacco products may be harmful or fatal.

  • Raw Salmon: Dogs may be exposed to a parasite after eating infected salmon. The parasite causes gastrointestinal problems similar to parvo, and may be fatal. See your vet immediately if your dog has ingested raw salmon: ask for a fecal sample test for rickettsial organism. This can be treated if caught in time. Remember, if you feed your dog fish, makes sure it is cooked.

  • Plants: Toxic plants include Azalea, rhododendron, lilies, foxglove, daffodils, rhubarb leaves, yew, castor bean, sago palm, kalanchoe, and tulip bulbs.

  • Yeast Dough: Even a small amount can rise and cause a rupture in your dog's stomach or intestines.

  • Human Medications: Pain killers, cold meds, anti-cancer drugs, vitamins, diet pills, and anti-depressants can be toxic even in small doses. Never give human medication to your pet unless it is instructed by your vet.

  • Slug and Snail Bait: These products come in liquid, pellets, or powder form and are extremely toxic to dogs. These baits contain metaldehyde and should not be used anywhere there might be pets.

We found all this information on the Internet and wanted to share this life saving information with other pet lovers.

Remember that we are not professional doctors, and you should always read instructions and talk to your vet what is best for your pets.

If there is something that you would like to read about in the future, drop us an email at If you wish to be removed from this mailing list, please email us at

Johnny & Connie Luke