Pet Poison Prevention Week highlights hazards in purses and flower pots

Spring flowers may be lovely and seem innocuous enough, but they can be potentially fatal hazards to your pets.

Tulips, daffodils hyacinths, lilies, along with many kinds of potted plants, are toxic to cats and dogs.

So too are the contents of your purse: aspirin, inhalers, cigarettes, even breath mints, can send your pet to the vet. Petmd has a rundown of the Top Five Handbag Hazards.

Pet Poison Prevention Week (March 18-24) aims to draw attention to the myriad household hazards lurking just within reach of curious mouths.

The site's exhaustive A-Z list of toxic substances is helpful in understanding what needs to be kept out of reach. Alas, it seems virtually all flowers and potted plants have some toxic effect although some are more dangerous than others and the site notes that.

Cats crave greens and that can lead to trouble. For a safe snack for indoor cats, seek out a hunk of wheat grass at your local health food store. The smoothie guy at the local farmer's market near Harrisburg often cuts me a few slices from his patches of turf waiting to be made into wheat grass shots. Or you can grow it yourself. (There are kits for sale on Amazon and elsewhere.) 

Another safe bet, of course, is cat nip. (Here are some tips for growing it at home.)A small plant I planted a few years ago is now a huge bush. If I had the patience I might have snipped off all the buds and made my own dried catnip - which they say is more potent than storebought varieties - but instead I periodically clip a section and feed it to the cats.

If your pet should accidentally ingest a poison, call the 24/7 Pet Poison Helpline at 855-213-6680 immediately. There is a fee for the consultation but with your pet's life at risk it's worth it.