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Keep your pets from eating socks, hair bands and other nonfood items

Dogs and cats are notorious for eating anything and everything they can find, and even careful pet-proofing does not guarantee your precious pet won't swallow items you never thought of, such as towels or socks. These unseen dangers can not only be costly to remove, they can cost Fido and Fluffy his life. Below is a sampling of some of the items dogs and cats have swallowed and the cost of removing them, according to PetPartners Inc., the pet health care provider for the American Kennel Club and the Cat Fanciers' Association.


Toy: $669

Sock: $1,173

Snail bait: $146

Golf balls: $1,844

Dental floss: $3,590

Loose change: $1,018


Hair band: $1,505

Toy ball: $1,454

The most popular items that cats ingest are hair bands and toy balls, while dogs seem to have an affinity for toys and socks, according to PetPartners Inc. Though they may seem like small items, they are quite costly to remove.

Ways to keep pets safe

To keep your pet out of the emergency room, the American Kennel Club and the Cat Fanciers' Association offer the following tips to prevent your pets from eating things they shouldn't:

Prevention. You can avoid a trip to the emergency room altogether by taking some extra time to pet-proof your house. Make sure the garbage is secured and food is kept out of reach, and put clothes, shoes and toys away. Watch out for tinsel from your Christmas tree, beads and buttons as well — these items are small enough for your cat to swallow.

Provide an alternative. If you give your pet his own toys, then electrical cords and socks may not seem as appealing. Make sure to give your furry friend chew toys that are too large to swallow, and make them easily accessible for him.

Supervision. You should always try to supervise your dog and cat during playtime. You can avoid serious injury and sky-high vet bills if you are watching your pets and can take quick action when you notice something is wrong.

Regular exercise is important. Try to schedule regular exercise for your dog and cat. Well-exercised pets tend to get into less trouble.

Learn more about dogs and cats at Additional tips can be found on the American Kennel Club website at

Keep your pets from eating socks, hair bands and other nonfood items 08/30/10 [Last modified: Monday, August 30, 2010 5:25pm]
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