15 Sep Fertiliser And Your Pet
Posted at 17:38h in News
As many households prepare their gardens for spring, we have noticed a significant increase in calls to the Animal Poisons Helpline regarding fertiliser ingestion. Fertilisers are available in a diverse range of formulations. Inorganic fertilisers tend to contain varying but generally high quantities of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium; as well as trace elements which are tailored to suit specific purposes. Whilst a small lick or taste is unlikely to cause significant poisoning, large ingestions can potentially result in severe effects.
Organic fertilisers contain lower concentrations of these minerals. They are often made of different types of manures, blood, bone and other meals and as such are highly attractive to dogs. If dogs are allowed access to organic fertiliser packaging, it is not unusual for them to ingest very large quantities. Ingestion of organic fertilisers can result in severe gastroenteritis, possibly pancreatitis and gastrointestinal obstruction.
- As you prepare your garden for the warmer months ahead, take a moment to consider your pets:
- Never allow pets access to fertiliser containers or packaging. Keep in mind that dogs find organic fertilisers highly appetizing and will readily chew through packaging, so they need to be stored out of reach.
- Apply fertiliser as per the manufacturer’s recommendations (do not use excessive amounts)
- Water in fertiliser after application where possible – this is especially true for areas with chickens since they are very effective at picking up granules that have dropped to lower soil areas
- Avoid using organic fertiliser around spring bulbs (dogs will dig up the organic fertiliser and will often find these bulbs and eat them!)
If you think your pet has ingested fertiliser, call us on 1300 869 738 (AU) or 0800 869 738 (NZ) for a tailored risk assessment and recommendation, including first aid measures. Our service is free for all pet owners, you can save a pet’s life by keeping this critical service free. Please visit animalpoisons.com.au/support to learn about ways you can support the service.