Valentine’s Day Do’s and Don’ts For Pet Owners

Care & Wellness, Cats, Dogs, Emergency Situations

DO Keep Chocolate away from pets!

Just about everyone loves chocolate, especially on Valentine’s Day. Unfortunately, not everyone feels so good once they eat it. Dogs ingesting chocolate can experience agitation, vomiting, diarrhea, tachycardia, tremors and/or seizures, depending on the amount of chocolate ingested and size of the dog.

Pet Poison Helpline says pets ingesting milk chocolate, dark chocolate or chocolate baked goods are the top three most common exposures handled by them this time of year. If your pet gets into chocolate, call your veterinarian immediately. Be prepared to tell them the type of chocolate and how much your pet consumed.

DO Purchase safe gifts for your pet!

Why not buy them a new collar, a bag of pet friendly treats, a new bed or a toy? Anyone of these would make a great gift for Valentine’s Day. If your pet is spoiled enough, you might also consider donating to a local shelter or rescue — they always need toys, bedding, food, or cash to help with operations!

DO be careful with ribbons and bows

These come on flowers, candy and balloons. If ingested, they can cause intestinal foreign bodies.

DO look out for artificial sweeteners

Don’t forget Xylitol in sugar-free candies, gums, chocolates and baked goods. While this is a natural sweetener and is not toxic to people, it’s highly toxic to dogs, resulting in rapid onset of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and potentially, liver failure.


DON’T let your pet near lilies!

Flowers are a very common gift for Valentine’s Day. Pet owners should check all bouquets closely for lilies – these include Easter, Stargazer, Tiger, Asiatic and Oriental lilies. These are all deadly to cats and dogs.

For cats and dogs, exposure to lily pollen and water from a vase can result in kidney failure.

DON’T let your pets eat nuts

We know about the toxicity of chocolate with pets but, are you aware of the dangers of Macadamia nuts, coffee beans, grapes and raisins? Grapes and raisin ingestion can lead to kidney failure.

DON’T share the wine

Your pet can also be sensitive to alcohol, so keep your drinks up and out of the way. Also, keep ibuprofen and other pain medications locked up safely in a medicine cabinet.

If your pet ingests ANYTHING on this list, call your veterinarian immediately. Be sure to have the package available of what your pet ingested.

And most important:

DON’T Forget to Shower Your Pet with Love!!!

Your pet will appreciate the gift of time and love more than anything! We have all heard the saying “it’s the little things,” how true this is for your pet. Take your pet for an extra walk, cuddle or play with them a bit longer. This costs nothing but will be more appreciated than any other gift you and give your pet. Added bonus – exercise and cuddles are healthy so you are doing something good for yourself and your pet.

Please Contact us if you have any questions.

Essex Middle River Veterinary Center provides medical and surgical care for cats and dogs at our animal hospital and veterinary clinic in Essex, Maryland, just outside of Baltimore. Our services include preventive wellness care exams, vaccines, spays/neuters, and a variety of specialized care. Our state-of-the-art veterinary offices are conveniently located near I-695 where we see pets from Towson, Honeygo, White Marsh, and other neighboring Baltimore areas.

How To Protect Your Cat From Lily Toxicity

Springtime is one of the best times of the year, but for cats, it can be one of the most dangerous. As we near the Easter holiday, we see an abundance of lilies popping up in stores, backyards, and flower arrangements. This is worrisome as lilies are one of the most...

How to Keep Your Dog Safe at a Labor Day Party

Labor Day is the last big bash of the summer, and plenty of people invite their pets to the party. However, it’s important you protect your animal from dangers like heat, greasy food, and fireworks. Beat the Heat It may be September, but the weather can still be...

How Do I Purchase a Safe Pet Food For My Cat or Dog?

Within the last few weeks, Hill's voluntarily recalled several of their canned dog foods including some of their prescription foods. This incident highlights the importance of quality control and monitoring of dog and cat food in general. Recently there was a massive...

Help! Recently My Cat Has Been Peeing Around The House

Although cats are known as being highly clean animals, one of the most common reasons they are brought to the vet is for urinating outside of the litter box (known as ‘’house soiling’’ or ‘’inappropriate urination’’). This is a frustrating issue, so the sooner you...

Resource Topics

Does My Pet Really Need Dental Care?

Many pet owners wonder why their animals might need dental care. Our veterinarians have answered the most common...

What You Need to Know About Traveling With a Pet

Traveling with a pet isn’t easy. Thankfully, you aren’t the first person to try it. To help you through the...

Hippoty Pup Pup, Hippoty Pup Pup, Easter is on its way
Pebbles, Mac, Bogey, Red, Pepito, Cheyenne, Honey and Lexi wish you a Happy Easter

Comment on Facebook

TJ & Family wish the Whole Staff ..A Blessed Easter!!

Happy Easter from Monty and Mr Darcy!

2 days ago

Essex Middle River Veterinary Center

EMRVC has the greatest clients - this is why we love and appreciate each and every one of you! Mr. Boykins found a kitten on the side of the road last evening. September has now found her forever home🥰 ...

EMRVC has the greatest clients - this is why we love and appreciate each and every one of you! Mr. Boykins found a kitten on the side of the road last evening. September has now found her forever home🥰

Comment on Facebook

Great news. He’s in for many years of love.

Thank you sir!

He's that kitten's hero!

That is one adorable kitten!

Awwwww the kitten is adorable ❤️

Aww. I would have taken it. So cute!!


Great guy ! 🐈

3 days ago

Essex Middle River Veterinary Center

Hastings gave our newest CSR Kearra a nice welcome!! ...

Hastings gave our newest CSR Kearra a nice welcome!!

Comment on Facebook

What is a CSR?

Load more