Sunday, September 14, 2008

Be Careful Using Chemicals Around Pets

I make handmade jewelry and back in 2002, I was brushing on a glaze on some earrings. I was outside on the patio, I had a fan on the table and I was wearing an OSHA approved mask (to protect me). By my side, laying on the patio, was my dog Jake (a 120 pound shepherd, rottweiler mix). I was outside glazing for about an hour. Then we came in the house.

A short time later, Jake was acting very odd. He acted like he couldn't see and was having trouble walking. I rushed him to the vet. The vet had no idea what was the matter with him. After a lot of tests (that didn't reveal anything), I wondered about the glaze. I called home to get the ingredients and told them to the vet. He called the pet poison control and found that the symptoms (neurological damage) were the same as Jake's. The toxic ingredients were Toluene and Xylene. The vet sent Jake home and he said there wasn't an antidote and did not know if he would get any better or he might continue to get worse.

Jake never recovered completely. He never was able to jump up on the bed again, he had slept on the end of my bed for 12 years. He never got up on the couch again, his favorite spot to sleep. I had to get carpet runners for the kitchen, because if he slipped on the kitchen floor, he would not be able to get up. He couldn't play any more with his best friend, our neighbor's dog, Sheila.

When he was 13 1/2 the vet put him on Rimadyl for arthritis in his hips. He died suddenly 3 months later due to liver failure from the Rimadyl. (See my blog: "Dangers of Rimadyl")

Please protect yourself, family and pets when using toxic chemicals. The side effects can be devastating and some you might not see for years, like cancer.