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Easter Hazards

Release Date: April 15, 2019

Poison prevention must be practiced everyday, including holidays. Below are some potential hazards the NJ Poison Control Center would like everyone to pay attention to over the upcoming Easter holiday.

Food Poisoning

Perishable foods like raw/cooked meats, poultry, and seafood should be kept refrigerated. If left at room temperature for 2 hours or more, they should be discarded.

Symptoms of food poisoning include: nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, chills and fever, diarrhea, and weakness. Symptoms can occur 1-8 hours after eating "toxic" food.


Raw eggs may carry bacteria known as Salmonella. Cook eggs fully before decorating. If you use raw eggs for cookie dough or cake batter, be sure to use eggs pasteurized in their shells so licking the spoon may be safe. If you happen to touch the liquid inside of a raw egg, immediately wash your hands with soap and water.

Refrigerate colored eggs. Even though hard-boiled eggs are cooked, they should not be out at room temperature for more than 2 hours.


Chocolate can be toxic to both cats and dogs. Symptoms include convulsions, heart problems, nausea, and vomiting.

Easter Grass

Keep away from pets. They are choking hazards and can cause intestinal obstruction if ingested.

Easter Egg Dye

Most of these are non toxic. Despite their lack of serious toxicity, children should be supervised at all times while decorating their eggs. If small amounts are eaten, there is not much of a problem. A trip to the emergency room may result if a large amount is eaten.

Easter Plants

Easter Lilly: Keep away from pets. Poisonous to cats.

Lily of the Valley: If ingested, this plant can cause heart problems

Tulips and other bulb spring flowers: The bulbs can be irritating to your skin. If swallowed, they can cause distress.

This information has been provided by: The New Jersey Poison Information & Education System Serving New Jersey Since 1983. The Poison Control Center Hotline number, 1-800-222-1222, can be used for treatment advice for emergency poisonings as well as for non-emergency questions regarding medications, household products, plants, or environmental contaminants. The hotline is accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!