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Veterinary Pet Insurance Data Reveals Well-Intended Pet Owners Unknowingly Poisoning Their Pets
Date:3/20/2008

Pet Owners Unintentionally Harming Thousands of Pets Each Year

BREA, Calif., March 20 /PRNewswire/ -- In the average household, many pets are only one bite away from disaster. Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI), the nation's oldest and largest provider of pet health insurance, recently analyzed its medical claims data to determine the most commonly ingested household toxins and poisons. VPI ranked the toxic substances by the number of claims received in 2007 for each type. Shockingly, the most dangerous poisons by far are human medications intentionally given to pets by their owners. Following is the list of top household toxins, with 2007 claim counts and prevention pointers for each.

1. Drug Reactions (3,455 claims) -- VPI received more claims for drug

reactions than all other poisoning claims combined in 2007. Many of

these claims involved pets given drugs intended for human

consumption, such as over-the-counter pain relievers. Pet owners

often give pets over-the-counter or prescription drugs for their

ailments, unaware that even given in small amounts, many of these

drugs cannot be metabolized by pets fast enough to prevent an

overdose. Never give pets medications without consulting a

veterinarian.

2. Rodenticide (870 claims) -- Even if these poisons, most often sold in

pellet form, are placed away from pets, rodents can carry them to

pet-occupied areas. The taste and smell of rodenticides is designed

to appeal to small mammals. Pet owners should consider other options

for eliminating rodents.

3. Methylxanthine (755 claims) -- The methylxanthine class of chemical

compounds includes theobromine and caffeine, both of which are common

ingredients in chocolate. Toxic amounts of theobromine can cause

vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, hyperactivity, abnormal rh
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SOURCE Veterinary Pet Insurance
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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