St. Patrick’s Day, especially in Boston, is a day of celebration where everyone is a little Irish.

The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) wants to remind pet owners to celebrate safely, and to keep a few things in mind while doing so.

  1. Everything is green…But your pet should NOT be. Green cookies, green beer and the like are commonplace on St. Patrick’s Day. Unfortunately many feel that dyeing their animal’s fur enhances the celebration. Dyed fur can cause irritation, and also imposes health risks. If your dog licks the area that’s dyed — even after washing — they can ingest a number of toxins that can cause nausea, vomiting, allergic reactions, or even death. It can also take up to a month to wash the dye completely from your dog’s fur.
  2. Keep a Watchful Eye on your Pet. Green beer has become a staple for many celebrating the St. Patrick’s Day holiday. Most dogs will happily lap up anything on the table, and it doesn’t take much to intoxicate an animal. Needless to say, alcohol is dangerous for animals, so please keep an eye on your pup while attending parties or other holiday festivities.
  3. Luck of the Irish, NOT dogs. The shamrock is often found at St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, however these plants can be toxic to your dog. If ingested, shamrocks can cause upset stomach, drooling, and in severe cases kidney damage. Again, keep close watch on your dog while celebrating.

If your animal shows any sign of toxicity for any of the above-mentioned issues, contact your veterinarian immediately for treatment. Vigilance is responsible pet ownership!