Why your pet could be at risk from grit used on roads

Friday, 2nd March 2018, 2:56 pm
Updated Friday, 2nd March 2018, 3:25 pm

The grit being spread on British roads and pavements as a result of Storm Emma may be having a negative effect on our pets' health, it has been revealed.

According to animal charity RSPCA, the salt spread to improve road safety is toxic to animals and in some cases can lead to kidney damage.

Speaking to the Independent, the RSPCA stated:

“We urge pet-owners to be cautious when grit is being spread on roads, as rock salt can be toxic to dogs and cats if they lick it from their paws or fur".

“This is because ingestion can cause a high blood sodium concentration which can cause thirst, vomiting and lethargy, and in severe cases kidney damage.”

Preventative measures

Despite its apparent omnipresence in current conditions, you can keep your pet safe from grit by taking the following recommended measures.

The charity recommend wiping your pets paws, fur and belly following a walk to prevent the ingestion of spreading salt.

The grit spread on British roads and pavements is toxic to pets (Photo: Shutterstock)

Alternatively pet owners can take the safest measure and avoid walking their dog in areas that have been gritted until conditions become more safe.

If you fear that your animal has ingested grit, the RSPCA recommend contacting your local vet immediately. They will be able to rehydrate your dog or cat and restabilise their sodium levels.

Threat from antifreeze

Along with grit, there is also a threat to pets from antifreeze, according to charity Dog's Trust.

The liquid is unsurprisingly toxic to animals. To prevent your pet from consuming the deicing liquid quickly clean up any spillages and keep containers well out of reach.

The charity also recommend keeping dog's on leads during walk as they may become disorientated during walks in treacherous conditions.

Dog owner's should also consider equipping their pets with a warm coat to keep them from getting too cold according to Dog's Trust.