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Cold Weather: Dangers of Antifreeze/De-Icer

Dog running in snowy park

Firstly, PetAir would like to say Happy New Year to everyone and we hope 2017 is filled with happiness for all.

It’s been a rather chilly start to the year in most the UK, which is often leading to frost. Therefore, we’d just like to remind you of the dangers of antifreeze and de-icer for our pets.

Antifreeze and de-icers contain ethylene glycol which is lethal to pets, especially cats because of their size. It’s appealing to animals due to its sweet taste, however ingesting even the smallest amount can be fatal for them – as little as one teaspoon can be fatal to cats. It can quickly lead to kidney failure, nervous system damage and death.

To avoid antifreeze poisoning of any kind, it’s important to make sure antifreeze containers are labelled clearly, well out of reach and always tightly closed. Also, check your car frequently for any leaking, clean up any spills fast and thoroughly and perhaps even search for an antifreeze/de-icer that doesn’t contain ethylene glycol.

There are some common symptoms of the poisoning which can occur soon after ingestion:

  • Un-coordinated behaviour and movement
  • Excessive urination
  • Vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Rapid heart beat
  • Shallow breathing
  • Lethargy

If you notice your pet having ANY of these symptoms, or are concerned in any way, take them to the vet immediately.