For many of us, the warmer spring weather results in a trip to the local garden centre. But here we must insert a cautionary note; some of the products we commonly use in our gardens can also be toxic to pets.
Slug pellets frequently contain the chemical metaldehyde and are generally blue or green in colour. Metaldehyde is very toxic to pets and since many dogs will eat almost anything, slug pellets should only be used with great care. Pets should be kept away from areas where they are used and stored.
Many gardeners also apply a thick layer of mulch to their flower beds in the spring and summer months. A little-known, but potentially lethal hazard is the use of cocoa shell mulch. Dogs are attracted to these shells by their smell, but they contain theobromine, which is very toxic to dogs. As a result, it is safer to use an alternative such as tree bark mulch.
As a general rule, when applying anything to your garden, ALWAYS read the label carefully regarding the hazards to pets and of course humans!