How can I dog-proof my garage?

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Dogs are a lot like children, in that they will find things to get into when you least expect it. One of the most dangerous rooms in your home is your garage. While your dog may not spend a lot of time in the garage, it is a room you should not be overlooked when dog-proofing your home. A garage is where most people store things they do not want in the rest of the house. These can include items like old furniture, bicycles and other odds and ends, and stores seriously harmful things for a dog.

Antifreeze is highly toxic to animals and is often stored in the garage. Ethyl glycol (EG) is the active ingredient in antifreeze. EG causes kidney failure in animals if accidentally consumed. It has a sweet aroma and taste, thus attracting dogs and cats alike to consume it. The symptoms of EG poisoning can be vague in animals. There is a three to eight hour window where an antidote can effectively be given. However, owners and veterinarians often do not recognize EG poisoning soon enough. EG is also found in brake fluid and other hydraulic fluids.

Other dangerous items in your garage are ant killer granular, weed killer and lawn fertilizer. Most ant killers contain a sugary substance (this attracts the dog and ants) along with boric acid. A small dose of boric acid is not lethally toxic to dogs, but any amount ingested over five grams can be fatal. Many weed killers have chemicals that are harmful to your pet, while many lawn fertilizers contain high levels of iron and pesticides.

You should always place antifreeze, ant or weed killers, and lawn fertilizer out of the reach of your dog. The garage can be a dangerous place for animals, so don’t forget to dog-proof this room as well.

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