CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) — Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, and, among other things, the holiday is known for causing health problems among cats and dogs.

According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), their poison control experts see a rise in cases around Feb. 14, many of which involve chocolate or lilies.

“If you even think your cat has gotten to any part of a lily, you need to get them to their normal veterinarian or an emergency clinic,” Dr. David Gonsky said, who’s with West Loop Veterinary Care.

Exposure to lilies can be potentially fatal to cats.

And seasoned pet owners know that all types of chocolate are also potentially life-threatening when ingested by cats and dogs.

“Methylxanthines are caffeine-like stimulants that affect gastrointestinal, neurologic and cardiac function — they can cause vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity, seizures and an abnormally elevated heart rate,” the ASPCA says.

ASPCA also suggests:

  • Being careful with cocktails, especially wine and champagne;
  • Not letting pets near roses or other thorny-stemmed flowers;
  • Putting out fires when leaving the room;
  • Gathering up tape, ribbons, bows, wrapping paper, cellophane and balloons after presents have been opened.