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Dog Friendly Tips: Keep Dog Label Rings Up To Date

Identification – your pet will need a dog collar and dog address tab for safety. If you have moved recently, double check your pet’s dog ID tag. Is the information up to date? If your number has changed, order a new dog tag immediately. Consider putting an additional dog tag on the outside of your pet’s Dog Carrier, just in case.

Dog Friendly Article: Dog Walkers and Pet Owners Are Warned of the Dangers of the Rock Salt Used to Grit Our Roads.

Pet owners are being warned to take particular care to clean their cats and dogs during the current wintery weather to prevent poisoning from the rock salt contained in grit and the anti-freeze used by motorists.

Hundreds of cats and dogs are becoming seriously ill and in some cases dying after walking through rock salt and anti freeze and then licking it off their paws and legs.

The RSPCA have reported a dramatic rise in cases of poisoning since the big freeze began and consider this the "tip of the iceberg" as only a fraction of cases are reported to them.

According to their findings most cases involve animals that have walked through gritted snow and then lick or chew it off their paws as they can find it irritating. Therefore their advice is to thoroughly wipe your pet's feet and fur on his/ her legs and tummy after a walk or time outside. If they are showing any signs of discomfort due to salt you should wash them with a pet safe shampoo and dry their fur completely with a towel afterwards.

Consuming rock salt can cause pancreatitis, dehydration and liver failure, therefore if you think your pet may have ingested rock salt the advice is to contact your vet immediately. The symptoms to be looking out for are burns to the mouth and throat and excessive salivating and drinking, however the signs can be quite non-specific so if you are concerned seek professional help.

Cath Brown, owner of a dog walking company in London said poisoning from salt and grit is something pet owners were often unaware of.

"Rock salt poisoning in particular is a real problem. Dogs and cats can become seriously ill after licking salt from their paws and excessive salt can lead to kidney failure. We instruct all our dog walkers to avoid gritted areas wherever possible and they carry water and towels to ensure their dog's paws and legs are thoroughly cleaned after every walk."

There has been some debate over whether councils are adding anti freeze to their grit. The RSPCA has carried out tests which came back negative however each council has their own supplier, so if you are concerned about the composition of rock salt in your area you should contact your local authority for information.

The fact remains however that many motorists are using anti freeze at this time of year and it is even more harmful to animals than rock salt. It contains ethylene glycol which tastes like lemonade to dogs and cats and can be fatal when digested.

Dogs that have ingested anti freeze are likely to be symptomatic within 1 hour. The symptoms associated with consuming anti freeze include vomiting, lack of coordination, lethargy, seizures, dehydration and rapid breathing.

An RSPCA spokeswoman said: 'Owners should contact a vet immediately if they suspect that their pet may have been in contact with these substances or if they see any warning signs or symptoms.

'The sooner they are treated, the better their chances of surviving.'

This article was written by Richard Bandy

If you would like further information on the possible dangers to animals of rock salt and anti freeze please contact me at or the RSPCA at

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