Author Archives: San Elijo Life

Common Household Poisons and Toxicities in Pets-Advanced Veterinary Care of San Elijo 

Common Household Poisons and Toxicities in Pets

March is Poison Prevention Awareness Month.  When a poisoning is suspected, time and knowledge will be the best weapons you have and will give your pet the best chance of a full recovery.

Poisons are defined as any substance that can damage or impede the function of bodily organs, tissues, or body system processesThere are many poisons commonly found in pet homes.  Depending on the type of poison and the level of exposure, the effects of poison exposure can range from minimal, to severe, to even fatal.  Awareness of these hazards and a knowledge of how to handle the situation can sometimes literally save a pet’s life.

Commonly Encountered Pet Poisons:

Poisonous Foods:

Chocolate, Coffee, and Caffeine: These products are known to cause vomiting, diarrhea, panting, hyperactivity, tremors, seizures, and even death in pets.  Severity depends on quantity ingested vs the weight of the pet, so it is important to have information on your pet’s current weight, how much was ingested and, in the case of chocolate, what type of chocolate was ingested (dark vs light).

Xylitol: Xylitol is a calorie free sweetener found in many gums and toothpastes, as well as some candy, peanut butter, and baked goods.  Even small amounts of xylitol can cause liver failure and dangerously low blood sugar, so ingestion is always a veterinary emergency.  Xylitol can be found under other names on product labels including birch sugar, birch bark extract, wood sugar, sucre de bouleu, and Xylo-pentane.

Grapes and Raisins: Vets remain unsure of why grapes and raisins are toxic, but they are known to cause acute kidney failure, even in small amounts.  Grape/Raisin ingestion should be treated as a veterinary emergencyregardless of how many grapes or raisins were ingested and regardless of what type of grapes/raisins were eating (red, gold, or green).

Garlic, Onions, and Chives: These foods can cause gastrointestinal irritation but can also cause red blood cell damage, leading to anemia.  Cats are more susceptible, but dogs can be affected if large quantities are ingested.

Macadamia Nuts: Dogs seem to be the only pets who are sensitive to these nuts. Toxicity symptoms include weakness, ataxia (wobbily gait), depression, vomiting, tremors, and increased body temperature.  Without further ingestion, symptoms can resolve within 48 hours, but a veterinarian should be contacted if ingestion is suspected.

Human Medications:

It is advised that owners never give their pets human medication without consulting their veterinarian. Owners should also keep their medications well out of pets’ reach to prevent accidental ingestion.  Many human medications are metabolized differently by animals, and ingestion can potentially lead to overdoses, toxicities, organ failure, or even death.
If your pet ingests a human medication, you should call Pet Poison Control (see below) and/or your veterinarian immediately.

Pet Medications:

Even medications prescribed by your veterinarian should be kept out of your pet’s reach.  When used as prescribed, your pet’s medications should be safe and beneficial; however, most medications and even supplements could potentially cause problems if the incorrect dose is given, if given to the wrong pet, or if the pet accidentally gets into the full bottle of medication.

Alcohol Poisoning:

Pets should never have access to alcohol as ingestion can cause severe symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, central nervous system depression, tremors, coma, or even death. If your pet ingests alcohol, it is important to contact your veterinarian or veterinary emergency hospital immediately. 

Marijuana Toxicity:

Pets can suffer toxicity after eating any part of the marijuana plant, as well as from smoke inhalation, consuming hashish oil, or from eating edibles containing THC.  Signs of marijuana toxicity include ataxia (wobbily gait), hyperreactivity to stimuli (flinch easily), dribbling urine, decreased responsiveness and, in severe cases, seizures or pet becoming non-responsive.
Because pets metabolize marijuana differently than humans, a veterinarian should be contacted if marijuana toxicity is known or suspected.

Household Product Poisoning:

Rodenticides, Snail/Slug Bait, Ant Bait: These baits represent significant dangers to pets as they are commonly placed in public places and are often scented to attract animals. 
Symptoms of toxicity vary depending on what was eaten, so knowledge of the brand and/or ingredients can be very helpful to the veterinary team.  If you know or suspect that your pet has ingested pest bait, it should be considered a veterinary emergency.

Essential Oils: These oils have been known to cause GI upset, central nervous system depression, organ damage, and respiratory issues/allergic airway syndrome.
Wintergreen, sweet birch, eucalyptus, clove, tea tree, and pennyroyal oils appear to be particularly toxic.

Household Chemicals: Not surprisingly, many common household chemicals and cleaners have potential to cause toxicity or GI upset.  Some of the most common include: Laundry pods, bleach, toilet bowl tablets/cleaner, antifreeze, carpet fresheners, and carpet shampoos.

Plant and Flower Toxicities

A number of plants and flowers can be toxic to pets.  The toxic reactions can range from gastrointestinal upset to organ failure.  Symptoms, severity, and treatment will vary based on the type of plant, portion eaten, and amount eaten, so having this information at hand can be very helpful for your veterinarian.
ASPCA Poison Control maintains a comprehensive database of toxic vs non-toxic plants, which owners can easily access from their website (see below).

Common toxic plants include (but are not limited to): Sago Palms, Lilies, Oleander, Aloe, Tulips, Poisonous Mushrooms, Tobacco, Azalea, Foxglove, and Philodendron.

If you suspect that your pet has ingested a poison:
Identification of the potential poison can provide crucial information for your veterinarian.  Gather whatever information you can, including boxes/wrappers, ingredient lists, and quantities ingested to bring to your veterinarian.

Contact your veterinarian or emergency veterinary clinic immediately.  Additionally, contact an animal poison control center (see below) for important treatment information that can help your veterinary team.  Note that there is usually a charge for these calls, but the information can be extremely valuable when time is of the essence.

What NOT to do:
It is not recommended that you attempt to treat toxicities at home. Do NOT induce vomiting with hydrogen peroxide, as this has been associated with esophageal irritation or even ulceration.

It is a common occurrence for pets to ingest a potentially dangerous item in their lifetime.  In these cases, early veterinary intervention is crucial for the best outcome for your pets. With fast and appropriate care, most pets recover fully from accidental poisonings.

Important Phone Numbers:

ASPCA Animal Poison Control: (888) 426-4435
Animal Poison Control Center: (855) 764-7661
ASPCA Toxic and Non-Toxic Plant List: Click Here 

If you have any questions about pet poisons, you suspect your pet may have ingested a poison, or you have concerns about your pet’s health, please contact our hospital!

Advanced Veterinary Care of San Elijo 

1691 Melrose Dr. Suite # 110
San Marcos, CA 92078

Just Sold in San Elijo Hills

I am thrilled to announce that I have just sold the beautiful home located at 1567 Clifftop in San Elijo Hills. This stunning property offered elegant design, and luxurious amenities, making it the perfect dream home for its new owners.

With its spacious open floor plan, modern appliances, and premium finishes, 1567 Clifftop truly offered the best of both comfort and style. Its location in the highly coveted San Elijo Hills community made it an ideal choice for families looking for a serene, picturesque neighborhood with excellent schools and community amenities.

I worked tirelessly to find the perfect buyers for this remarkable property. I utilized my extensive network, cutting-edge marketing strategies, and a personalized approach to ensure that the home received maximum exposure and interest from potential buyers. I am delighted to have found the right match and successfully closed the deal.

If you are looking to buy or sell a property in San Elijo Hills or the surrounding areas, please do not hesitate to contact me. I have years of experience and expertise in real estate, and I am committed to providing you with the highest level of service and support.

Thank you for your continued trust in me. I look forward to helping you with all of your real estate needs.

Best regards,

Ed Philbrick

Call or Text: 760-496-8134


Edward Philbrick: REALTOR Lic #01967137

Coastal Premier Properties. Lic #01882160 

City of San Marcos Building codes and plan submittal updates announced for residents and contractors

The City of San Marcos’ building division has made a few important updates to its building design criteria, solar application process and plan review. The City of San Marcos’ building division oversees permit processing, plan review, permit issuance and building inspections on new construction and alterations of residential and commercial structures.

Building design criteria for developments has made an adjustment in relation to the 2023 Building Codes. Design criterion will be based on the 2022 California Building Codes for projects where the permit application is submitted after Jan. 1, 2023. The City utilizes these building codes to perform plan reviews and inspections on all alterations and new construction throughout the City. The building codes help establish the minimum requirements to safeguard the public health, safety and general welfare through structural strength, means of egress, access to people with disabilities, sanitation, adequate lighting and ventilation and energy conservation. For further details, please check the Building Design Criteria webpage on the City website

For contractors processing residential solar permits, the City’s new SolarAPP+ feature offers an expedited permit process and permit issuance. SolarAPP+ offers a code-compliance plan check for many residential roof-mounted solar systems. After receiving plan review approval through SolarAPP+ the contractor can process their own permit on the City’s online permitting system (E-TRAKiT) and issue their own building permit. Contractors can check the SolarAPP+ Checklist on the City website to identify which systems are eligible. 

Those who are working to submit a building permit application that requires plan review, must be aware of the plan formatting requirements prior to submitting to the City for review. Plan checks were previously processed via hard copy but are now switching to electronic submittals which have certain requirements for proper submission. The plan submittal requirements can be found on the Plan Check webpage. Once the plans have been formatted per the City’s requirements, applicants can submit their submittal package electronically. Details on submittal guidelines can be found on the City website

For additional information, please contact the Building Division, through email at or by phone at (760) 744-1050 ext. 3244.

 San Marcos Elementary School, former NFL player Jeff Garcia, Creative Minds Publishing/Tackle Read organization and Dr. Seuss Enterprises

San Marcos Unified School District in partnership with Creative Minds Publications kicked off a Tackle Reading event this morning at San Marcos Elementary School, to celebrate National Read Across America Week and Dr. Seuess’s birthday. Current and former NFL athletes donate their time to serve as readers for the day in elementary schools around the country, and this morning, former 49ers player Jeff Garcia shared the love of reading with the students of San Marcos Elementary School. Students heard a motivational message, asked questions, and, of course, listened to them read one of their favorite children’s books!

New online public records portal provides simple and transparent process for requesting city of San Marcos documents

City documents will now be easier to access in San Marcos thanks to a new public records portal being launched today. The portal allows people to request, track and access public records and documents as part of the California Public Records Act.

The new portal allows people to create an account, request records, track records response, and view records once available. Requests can also be made anonymously; however, anonymous requests are not trackable in the portal. 

All records requests and responsive documents will now also be accessible through the new portal.

Information about how to request city records and a link to the new portal can be accessed on the City’s Public Records webpage.  

 “The City is excited to offer this new resource to the community in its continued effort to be transparent and efficient with regards to its records management,” said San Marcos City Clerk Phil Scollick.  

Under the CPRA, the community has access to most city documents like City Council minutes and agendas, contracts, reports, ordinances, resolutions and more – except for those considered confidential, privileged, or otherwise exempt from disclosure.   

In addition to the online portal, residents can also request records by email, phone, in person or in writing. 

In accordance with the CPRA, the City of San Marcos will respond to public record requests within ten calendar days after receipt. If additional time is needed to locate, compile, or review responsive records, staff will contact the requestor. 

There is no cost to access public records at this time. 

For more information, please contact Deputy City Clerk Destiny Roig at (760) 744-1050, ext. 3114 or

San Elijo Hills Community Garden Lottery


It is time for the annual community garden lottery! Grow your own flowers, vegetables and herbs! 

Plots will be available from 4.1.23– 3.31.24. The cost of a yearly lease is $50.00. All existing lessees must reapply for the lottery. 

If you would like to participate in the lottery to lease a space in one of the community gardens, please submit an application by clicking APPLY HERE no later than 3.15.23.  The community gardens are for San Elijo Hills Community Association residents only.

Gardeners must cultivate and plant their planter box within four weeks of assignment and visit their garden plants at least once every two weeks. Planter boxes and the surrounding area may not be left farrow or unused for any period longer than three weeks for more than one time each gardening year.

For more information, please call 760-798-9015 or email

How to keep your pet’s mouth clean and healthy-Advanced Veterinary Care of San Elijo 

Dental (periodontal) disease is one of the most common chronic health conditions seen in pets.  This condition involves far more than dirty teeth and “doggy breath.” It is a serious condition which can have serious consequences for our animal companions.

Dental and periodontal disease begin early in a pet’s life, with most dogs and cats showing signs of tartar and gum inflammation as early as two or three years old.  Early signs of disease can include yellow buildup on teeth (tartar), bad breath, and red, swollen gums.  Even mild signs of disease warrant intervention as they are the beginning stages of a progressive disease that can ultimately have serious consequences.

Dental disease is progressive, starting with the early signs mention above.  Over time, it can result in tooth pain, tooth root abscesses, tooth loss, gum disease, jaw bone loss, and even kidney, liver, or heart damage.  These changes can be the source of chronic pain for our petsFor these reasons, good oral health has been shown to contribute to longer, happier, healthier lives for both pets and people.

Comprehensive veterinary dental cleanings are a core component of your pet’s wellness.   A proper veterinary dental cleaning includes: hand and ultrasonic scaling both above and below the gumline, probing of sub-gingival pockets (which can be sites of infection), a comprehensive oral examination, thorough enamel polishing, and fluoride treatment.  Additionally, full-mouth radiographs (X-rays) are essential for proper veterinary dental care.  This allows the veterinary team to look for disease below the gumline which can include tooth-root abscesses, tooth root resorption, and bone loss.

Because a proper dental cleaning involves radiographs, full oral examination, and probing beneath the gumline, safe general anesthesia is essential for the procedure.  While “anesthesia free” dentals may seem like an enticing alternative, they are both more stressful for the pet and they do not allow for comprehensive care and assessment of oral tissues.  Pre-anesthetic bloodwork, IV fluids, and comprehensive vital sign monitoring help keep anesthesia safe so that dental care can be performed on your pet safely and stress free.

Dental disease is most easily treated in the early stages of the condition when it can often be resolved by a routine comprehensive veterinary dental cleaning.  Pets with more severe dental disease may require extractions or other interventions.  

Once your pet’s teeth have been addressed through veterinary dentistry, a comprehensive home care program can begin.  The gold standard of home care is daily brushing.  While this is most easily taught to young puppies and kittens, even adult pets can learn to accept this procedure if you start slowly and train them using positive techniques.  For pets who don’t allow toothbrushing, there are other options such as dental health diets, dental health chews, toys that promote oral hygiene, and water and food additives.  It should be noted that not all pet oral health products are created equal.  Products approved by the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) have been rigorously tested and proven to promote oral health.  Finally, products that are very hard and/or are difficult to bend or break easily (such as antlers, bones, and synthetic bones) should be avoided as they can actually break teeth or chip tooth enamel.

February is National Dental Health Month.  This is a great time to start thinking about your pet’s oral health!  Addressing your pet’s dental health starts with a comprehensive veterinary examination.  As part of this exam, your veterinarian will check your pet’s teeth and gums. They will be able to give you a professional assessment of your pet’s oral health and give you recommendations for steps to be taken for your pet’s oral (and general) health.

If you would like to schedule an appointment, please contact our hospital at (760) 736-3636 and set up an appointment with one of our experienced veterinarians.

Advanced Veterinary Care of San Elijo 

1691 Melrose Dr. Suite # 110

San Marcos, CA 92078


Water District to Sponsor Scholarship Contest

Water District to Sponsor Scholarship Contest
Vallecitos Water District offers scholarships to local high school seniors and college students

San Marcos, CA – Vallecitos Water District invites local high school seniors and students at both Palomar College and California State University San Marcos to compete for scholarships from the District. Up to six scholarships may be awarded in amounts up to $1,000 per scholarship. The purpose of the scholarship program is to encourage students to learn more about water-related issues impacting their community.

Students who compete for a scholarship must complete an essay and provide a personal statement related to their background and/or goals. Selection criteria also include community involvement or volunteer service, a financial needs worksheet, and letters of recommendation from faculty or an associate.

Students may download an application package from, or contact Chris Robbins at (760) 752-7120 or to have the materials sent to them. Applications must be received via e-mail or at the District office by 5:00 PM on Friday, March 31, 2023. Eligible students must live or go to school within the Vallecitos Water District’s service area.

Clean Energy Alliance is the New Power Provider for San Marcos

Clean Energy. More Choices. Locally Controlled.   

On April 1, San Marcos residents and businesses will have a new default energy provider, Clean Energy Alliance (CEA). CEA, a locally controlled not-for-profit entity, offers clean energy options at competitive rates to power your home or business. CEA currently serves the cities of Carlsbad, Del Mar and Solana Beach. Along with San Marcos, CEA becomes the default energy provider in Escondido this month followed by Oceanside and Vista in April 2024.  

CEA was formed to help meet the goals of its member city’s Climate Action Plans by providing electricity with a higher renewable content than San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E). The program is locally controlled and supported by ratepayers, with no taxpayer subsidies. Because CEA is locally managed and a not-for-profit, any excess revenue is reinvested into the member communities through on-bill savings and innovative energy projects and programs, including rebates and other incentives, low-cost energy programs, job training and more. 

CEA is governed by a Board of local elected officials from member agencies, who oversee decisions regarding power purchasing, programs and rate setting, and are directly accountable to the people who elected them. 

How It Works  

CEA follows the community choice energy model allowing local governments to purchase energy directly from power providers to meet their community’s electricity needs, offering an alternative to investor-owned utilities. SDG&E will continue to handle customer billing, transmission and distribution to homes and businesses.  

A How it Works on the Clean Energy Alliance

Local control allows CEA to make better investments in clean power purchasing.  

CEA is proud to offer three power supply products: Clean Impact 50% renewable; Clean Impact Plus 75% Carbon Free and Green Impact 100% Renewable. Each city government is responsible for selecting a default product for their community. The City of San Marcos has selected Clean Impact Plus for all customers to be enrolled in, which offers 50% renewable/75% carbon-free energy content. Customers will have the option to opt up or down with CEA’s other two power options or they may also choose to opt-out and remain with SDG&E.  

To learn more about the Clean Energy Alliance, visit  

San Elijo Hills – Notice of Application to the City of San Marcos

DATE: 1/18/2023
APPLICANT: San Elijo HIlls Building F LLC

LOCATION: Southwest of the San Elijo Split into San Ejijo South and North (See Vicinity Map below)

DESCRIPTION OF PROJECT: A request for a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) for a 6,400 square-foot preschool facility, comprised of five (5) classrooms and administration offices, two outdoor
playground areas, landscaping, perimeter fencing, a parking lot and driveways. The above referenced project has been submitted to the City for review. All property owners within
close proximity of the proposed project are being notified of the project early in the review process. THIS

Notice of Intended Decision.

If you have any questions related to this project or this notice, please contact Scott Nightingale, at
(760)744-1050 ext. 3281, or


This is the last remaining commercial lot in San Elijo Hills Towncenter and was originally designated as the Church Lot before the adjacent condos have been built. Some underground lines or pipelines may limit construction at this location. The community at large had discussed this location as a skatepark location etc.

What do you think? Traffic impact, safety? or do you see a need for preschool?

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