The first thing you should do to keep your pets safe outdoors is to get to know the names of the plants in your yard to determine if they're safe, says Tina Wismer, medical director at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. If your pet ingests something poisonous, inform your vet immediately. Common toxins include compost, mushrooms, insecticides, snail and slug bait, and cocoa-bean mulch. For a comprehensive list, visit aspca.org.
Puppies have a tendency to chew on everything they find. Place chicken wire around harmful plants (like azaleas, shown) to keep your pet away.
Pick any mushrooms in your yard and toss them right away -- many poisonous varieties resemble safe ones. For example, toxic Gyromitra esculenta looks similar to these edible morels.
Although compost benefits your garden, the bacteria and spoiled food inside can make pets sick. Keep compost and lawn-care products covered and out of your pet’s reach.