These Products Might Cause Pet Poisoning

According to Pet Poison Helpline, thousands of pets are accidentally poisoned each year.  Practice pet poison prevention by learning more about the dangers that could be lurking around your home.   

Read this article to find out what those dangers are.  You might be surprised to discover what’s on the pet poison list. 

Human Medications

Most of the medications that we rely on should never be consumed by your pet.  Here are a few examples:

  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol)
  • Ibuprofen
  • Naproxen (Advil, Aleve)
  • Prescription anti-inflammatories
  • Prescription pain medications
  • Antidepressants
  • Blood pressure medications

Keep all medications in closed cabinets so that your pet can’t find them.  And if you ever accidentally drop a pill on the ground, pick it up immediately so that your pet won’t eat it.

Pet Medications

Just because they are designed for pets doesn’t mean pet medications come with a 0% risk.  Consuming more than the recommended dosage can cause harm to your pet.

Always speak with your veterinarian before giving your pet over-the-counter products.  And always double-check the dosage to make sure you don’t give your pet too much. 

Lastly, keep your pet’s medicine in a closed cabinet at all times.  

People Foods

Don’t feel bad about refusing to give in when your pet begs for a table treat.  It’s actually for your furry friend’s own good.

Many human foods and beverages are not safe for animal consumption.  The following pet poison list contains some examples of those foods and drinks.

  • Alcohol - Allowing your pet to drink alcohol could lead to death in the worst-case scenario.
  • Macadamia Nuts - Eating these could cause your pet to overheat and throw up.
  • Grapes and Raisins - They might look harmless, but these fruits can cause kidney failure in dogs.
  • Xylitol - The serious consequences of consuming this sweetener include seizures and liver failure.
  • Chocolate - This food contains methylxanthines which could cause death. The darker the chocolate the higher the methylxanthine content.
  • Onions and Garlic - Although the poisoning symptoms caused by these foods are usually mild to moderate, onions and garlic can cause death in sensitive pets. Cats are more likely to have severe reactions to garlic and onions. 
  • Caffeine - This includes coffee, tea, chocolate, soda, and energy drinks.

There are some people foods that are pet safe.  You can give those foods as an occasional treat during special events and holidays. Just make sure to do your research first.

If you have any questions about the types of people food you can give to pets, feel free to ask your veterinarian. 

Gardening Products

Love to garden?  Do you take pride in keeping your yard in excellent shape? Great!  Just be careful to keep your yard and gardening products far away from your pet.

This includes:

  • Insecticides
  • Pesticides
  • Herbicides
  • Fertilizers
  • Compost
  • Mulch
  • Slug and snail baits


When working hard to keep your yard looking great, you must remember that some plants cause pet poisoning.  Here are some examples of the types of plants you should not add to your garden:

  • Azaleas and Rhododendrons - Don’t let their beautiful flowers fool you. These plants are toxic to pets and can cause vomiting, diarrhea, coma, or (in the worst-case scenario) death. 
  • Tulips - These plants can also harm your furry friend by causing stomach issues, breathing difficulties, and heart problems.
  • Sago Palms - Consuming the seeds of this plant might cause vomiting, seizures, and liver failure.
  • Lilies - Some lily varieties are so toxic that just a smidgen of the plant can cause kidney failure.
  • Daffodils - This plant’s lovely looking bulbs can actually irritate your pet’s tissues, which leads to vomiting, diarrhea, and pain.

Household Products

You probably use cleaning products around your home every day, but they can be toxic to pets.  Consider switching to safer alternatives.

Some products that may cause pet poisoning include:

  • Pine-Sol
  • Clean
  • Clorox Bathroom Cleaner
  • Scrubbing Bubbles
  • Formula 409
  • Windex
  • Tide
  • Cheer

There are other types of household products that can also be toxic to pets.  These include:

  • Antifreeze
  • Paint thinner
  • Pool chemicals
  • Rodenticides

Self-Care Products

Your favorite self-care products might be toxic to your four-legged friend.  Want a few examples?  See the list below:

  • Body soaps - These can irritate your pet’s eyes and stomach, so don’t use your soap bar to wash your furball.
  • Mouthwash - Many of these products contain xylitol, which is harmful to pets.
  • Nail Polish - With pet-toxic ingredients like toluene and formaldehyde, it’s best not to paint your pet’s nails.
  • Nail Polish Remover - Acetone may harm your pet’s skin, mucous membrane, and lungs.
  • Deodorants - Aluminum, found in many popular deodorants, is toxic to pets.
  • Hair Mousse - Acetic acid, aluminum sulfate, and hydrochloric acid are commonly used ingredients in hair mousse. These can damage your pet’s tissues.
  • Toothpaste - Buy a separate toothpaste created especially for pets when you need to brush your furry friend’s teeth. Many human toothpastes contain sodium fluoride, which is dangerous for pets.
  • Shampoo - Buy a pet shampoo instead of using your own product on your pet. Human shampoos can dry out your pet’s skin, and in some cases, they can cause more serious consequences 

What to Do if Your Pet is Poisoned

Accidents happen.  If your pet manages to get into something toxic, you need to know how to respond.  It could save your pet’s life.

First, if you suspect poisoning, don’t panic.  It’s imperative to keep calm and clearly think about the best way to handle the situation.

Next, you have several options for who to call.  You can get a hold of:

  • Your Vet.

If you are advised to take your pet to the vet, grab the toxic item you believe your pet was exposed to.  Take this to the veterinarian.  If your pet throws up, you should also bring along a vomit sample.

Hopefully, you are beginning to understand the importance of pet poison prevention and have gained a greater knowledge of products included on pet poison lists. 

Doing your best to keep those products away from your furry friend will greatly decrease the odds of your pet being poisoned.  That should put your fears to rest!


15 PET POISONS YOU MAY NOT KNOW ARE IN YOUR HOME. (n.d.). From The Cat Hospital of Media:

A guide to pet safety. (n.d.). From Pet Poison Hotline:

Anne Travis, H. (n.d.). 19 Beauty Products That Could Harm Your Pet. From Pet MD:

Top 10 Dog Poisons. (n.d.). From Fetch by WebMD:

TOP 10 DOG POISONS. (n.d.). From Aspen Grove Veterinary Care:


Kristina Tyler is a full-time freelance writer who specializes in pet care topics.  With her life-long love of animals and passion for learning, she thoroughly enjoys researching and writing about how to care for pets.  In her spare time, she teaches Sunday School classes, creates hand drawn pictures of animals, and devours the latest books by her favorite authors. She lives in California with her adorable kitty named Chloe and attends classes at the local community college.   


← Older Post