7 Common Household Pet Poisons in St. Paul, MN

Every year, thousands of pets are poisoned by common, everyday things. Make sure you are aware of what to keep away from your pet, and what to do if an accident does happen. If you have any questions, call St. Paul Pet Hospital in Cathedral Hill at (651) 789-6275 or Highland Park at (651) 789-0099.

household pet poisons in st. paul, mn

Over-the-Counter (OTC) Pain Medications

Ibuprofen (Ibuprofen/Advil/Motrin) is safely used to treat pain in people, but even one or two pills can be dangerous for pets. Cats are especially sensitive to this drug as their bodies are unable to metabolize it well. When ingested by dogs and cats, ibuprofen can cause vomiting, stomach ulcers with subsequent bleeding into the gastrointestinal tract, damage to the kidneys and, in very high doses, sedation and seizures.

Human Prescription Medications

Stimulant drugs (Adderall, Ritalin, Vyvanse) can result in hyperactivity, dilated pupils, tremors and seizures as well as elevated heart rate, blood pressure and temperature. Antidepressants (Prozac, Paxil, Effexor, Cymbalta) can lead to serious symptoms such as hyperexcitability or lethargy, disorientation, vomiting, dilated pupils, tremors, seizures and changes in heart rate and blood pressure.


Raisin and grape poisoning in dogs is poorly understood but can result in kidney failure.


The higher the cocoa content, the more dangerous it is. The amount of chocolate ingested in relation to the size of the dog is also key in assessing risk. Smaller ingestions can cause symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea, increased thirst and hyperactivity. Larger ingestions carry risk of elevated heart rate, tremors and seizures.


Xylitol is a type of sweetener toxic to dogs that’s used in sugar-free gums/mints and dental products, and as a sugar substitute. Dogs that ingest xylitol can develop low blood sugar and injury to the liver if enough is consumed.

Household toxicants

Home-improvement toxicants like gorilla glue, paint and spackle and plants/flowers.

Mouse and Rat Poisons

Overdose of vitamin D causes the blood calcium levels to rise, and if left untreated, can result in damage to organs, most commonly kidney failure. Pets that ingest overdoses of vitamin D will commonly show early vomiting, lack of appetite and later increased thirst and urination. Fortunately, these types of baits have an effective antidote. Bromethalin rodent baits cause swelling of the brain when ingested by pets and can lead to symptoms including lack of coordination, decreased activity, weak or wobbly gait, tremors and seizures. This type of bait has no antidote, so prompt veterinary treatment is imperative.

If your cat or dog shows signs of poisoning in this handout or you suspect that your pet has eaten any of these substances, you should call or visit a veterinarian immediately! Call St. Paul Pet Hospital in Cathedral Hill at (651) 789-6275 or Highland Park at (651) 789-0099.