We just got home from finishing up some final Christmas shopping when we saw the mess. Our labrador, Rio, had torn open one of the Christmas gifts. My seven-year-old son had spent his own money to buy mommy some nice lotion but Rio must have thought it smelled good too. Rio had crunched through the 6-ounce plastic bottle and eaten all of the lotion. First, I had to deal with the immediate tears from my son. I assured him that we would buy mommy some new lotion. I then looked at the lotion label to see if I could identify any of the ingredients. My regular vet’s office was already closed for the day. So I called the emergency vet clinic and explained what had happened. They suggested that I call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center.
The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They answered my call immediately and asked me some quick general questions about my dog and the situation. They pulled up the website of the lotion brand so that they could assess the ingredients. Then they put me on a brief hold so that the rep could review my case with their veterinarian/toxicologist. Luckily for Rio, the lotion ingredients were only expected to cause a mild upset stomach. The poison control center also advised on treatment.
The ASPCA Animal Poison Center charges a fee of $65. I wasn’t excited about paying the fee but very glad that they could ease my concern and provide immediate assistance.
Also Read <What is more deadly to dogs than Chocolate?>
As I was chatting with the poison center rep she shared with me that the phones have been ringing off the hook this holiday season. Many of the calls were regarding pets ingesting chocolate. I started thinking and wondering – what were some other options I could use for animal and pet poisoning advise that were open 24 x 7.
Poison Center Options
ASPCA Poison Center – Phone: 888-426-4435. $65 fee. Open 24 x 7 and staffed by veterinarians and toxicologists.
Pet Poison Helpline – Phone: 855-764-7661. $59 fee. Open 24 x 7. I have not personally used them but the fee is slightly lower than the ASPCA and they are staffed by trained veterinary health experts.
Kuddly — They created a mobile app that allows you to consult with a veterinarian 24 x 7. $10 for a 12-minute chat or $2 for email. Technically, they are not considered as a poison control center. But when your regular vet’s office is closed (or if you don’t have a vet), here is a good resource to turn to for advice. I’ve used them once when my regular vet’s office was closed. I received help and advise promptly from a licensed veterinarian. Click here to download their mobile app – Kuddly mobile app.