Archive for November, 2012

Holiday and Cold Weather Safety for your Cats

MistletoeHoliday Safety
Many substances are available to cats during the winter and holiday season. Antifreeze is deadly. Just a few sips from an antifreeze puddle on your garage floor or the licking of paws after walking through a puddle can produce symptoms within 30 minutes such as staggering, vomiting, weakness, listlessness, frequent drinking, and urination that could be followed hours later by coma and death. After four hours, the ethylene glycol in antifreeze causes severe kidney damage that is irreversible. If treated without delay, the veterinarian will induce vomiting, administer activated charcoal to bind the antifreeze in the gastrointestinal tract and give the cat intravenous ethyl alcohol (ethanol) for three days or longer. The ethanol works by competing for the enzyme, alcohol dehydrogenase, that metabolizes ethylene glycol into toxic components. Keep a bottle of 3% hydrogen peroxide on hand in case your veterinarian tells you to induce vomiting before bringing your cat in. To reduce exposure of your cat to ethylene glycol, choose a product such as Prestone® LowTox® or Sierra®, made from propylene glycol, as these are much less toxic. Continue reading