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Open Roads Forum  >  RV Pet Stop

 > RV antifreeze and animals.

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Shipper

Lower Alabama

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Posted: 12/09/10 07:24am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have an outdoor fountain that I put RV antifreeze in during cold weather to protect the pump. It's safe for humans(on the label), but I assume we normally don't drink it. I don't use it in my RV except in the traps because I live in the sunny south(24 degrees this morning). Does anyone know from actual experience if it's harmful to birds and small animals? Please no comments from PETA members . Thanks!


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Klueck

Florida

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Posted: 12/09/10 07:50am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am not sure if it's safe for animals or not, but I can tell you that they seem to really look for a drink of water in the winter. We have a lot more visitors to our birds baths when it's colder. I would think it would not be good for them....it is a chemical

skipnchar

Topeka or somewhere else

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Posted: 12/09/10 08:26am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Even water is toxic if you drink enough of it. I believe that RV antifreeze is safe in the amounts a person might drink from not cleaning the system well but doubt if anyone ever intended any animal to drink very much of it. Doubt if it would kill easily but have little doubts it could make an animal unwell if strong enough concentration. If it were me I'd just turn off the water feature during freezing weather.


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dturm

Munster, IN

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Posted: 12/09/10 08:43am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MSDS SPEC SHEET wrote:

MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEET
WINTER CARE
RV ANTIFREEZE
SECTION 1 IDENTIFICATION
COMPANY NAME: CHEMICAL SPECIALTIES, INC.
EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBER: 303-675-0944
TRADE NAME: RV ANTIFREEZE
SECTION 2 INGREDIENTS
Chemical Name/ Common Name CAS # % by Weight TLV Source
Propylene Glycol 57-55-6 40 N/A
De-ionized Water 7732-18-5 60
This document is prepared pursuant to the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard (29CFR 19101200). In
addition, other substances not “Hazardous” per this OSHA Standard may be listed. Where proprietary
ingredient shows, the identity may be made available as provided in this standard.
SECTION 3 HAZARDS INDENTIFICATION
NFPA RATINGS (Scale 0-4) Health Fire Reactivity Other
0 1 0 N/A
Key: 0-Minimal 1-Slight 2-Moderate 3-Serious 4-Severe
POTENTIAL HEALTH EFFECTS
Routes of Exposure: Eye Contact, Skin Contact, Inhalation, Ingestion, Signs and Symptoms of Overdose
Eye: May cause minor eye irritation
Skin: No significant adverse effects are expected under anticipated conditions of normal use. Repeated,
prolonged exposure may cause slight flaking, tenderness and softening of skin.
Ingestion: No significant adverse effects are expected under anticipated conditions of normal
use. Excessive ingestions may cause central nervous system effects.
Inhalation: No significant adverse effects are expected under anticipated conditions of normal use. If
effects do occur, refer to FIRST AID section.
Signs and symptoms of Overexposure: Same as above.
Medical Conditions Generally Aggravated By Exposure: Material an/or its emissions may aggravate
preexisting eye disease.
Other Health Information: None


The main ingredient is propylene glycol which is used as a vehicle in some medications.

I'm not aware of a problem with birds, I'll check my veterinary sources. It appears that some avian vets use propylene glycol to dilute ivermectin when used in birds, so it must not be too toxic to birds.

In small amounts, it shouldn't be a problem to pets or humans.

Doug, DVM


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mpfireman

Cook County Il

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Posted: 12/09/10 09:34am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our birds drink out of a heated bird bath. When the weather gets cold, we plug it in, last night it was 6, and the birds were still drinking out of it. RV antifreeze is different MUCH that the stuff you put in your vehicle, so the RV stuff is safe, but I would not want to drink it.


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Shipper

Lower Alabama

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Posted: 12/09/10 09:50am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

skipnchar wrote:

If it were me I'd just turn off the water feature during freezing weather.

That's what I do; hence the antifreeze for the pump. Birds and squirrels (rats with bushy tails) use the fountain during normal times; hence the RV antifreeze.

SooperDaddy

Southern California

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Posted: 12/09/10 11:53am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Tennessee and other States have passed long needed laws requiring Antifreeze Manufacturers to put "bittering agents" in the Antifreeze. Most commonly used is denatonium benzoate. This is the same stuff used for many years in the stuff to keep dogs and children from chewing on their fingers and other stuff!

You can buy some at any Pharmacy and add it to the dangerousily poisonous Ethylene Glycol/Polyethylene Glycol antifreeze (which MAY already contain it), or to the safe propylene glycol RV fresh water type antifreeze (which does not automatically contain it, as it is considered safe).

INFO-"Adding as little as thirty parts of Denatonium Benzoate to one million parts of a liquid makes that liquid too bitter to be tolerated by most human subjects. This denaturant has been thus described as the bitterest compound known.

Chemically, Denatonium Benzoate is a close relative of the local anesthetic lidocaine - its structure differs from lidocaine by the addition of a single benzyl group.

And because of its aversive reaction, Denatonium Benzoate is commonly added to household items such as toiletries and to outdoor products such as pesticides to prevent accidental poisonings.

In 1995, Oregon's legislature required antifreeze and windshield washer fluid to contain Denatonium Benzoate, and the adoption of this policy by other states should reduce the number of cases of ethylene glycol and methanol poisonings.

Denatonium treatment may discourage swallowing substantial amounts of noxious materials, but doesn't prevent problems incurred from ingestion of smaller quantities. The best method of reducing childhood poisoning is still the child-resistant closure."


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Shipper

Lower Alabama

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Posted: 12/09/10 09:57am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

dturm wrote:

MSDS SPEC SHEET wrote:

MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEET
WINTER CARE
RV ANTIFREEZE
SECTION 1 IDENTIFICATION
COMPANY NAME: CHEMICAL SPECIALTIES, INC.
EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBER: 303-675-0944
TRADE NAME: RV ANTIFREEZE
SECTION 2 INGREDIENTS
Chemical Name/ Common Name CAS # % by Weight TLV Source
Propylene Glycol 57-55-6 40 N/A
De-ionized Water 7732-18-5 60
This document is prepared pursuant to the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard (29CFR 19101200). In
addition, other substances not “Hazardous” per this OSHA Standard may be listed. Where proprietary
ingredient shows, the identity may be made available as provided in this standard.
SECTION 3 HAZARDS INDENTIFICATION
NFPA RATINGS (Scale 0-4) Health Fire Reactivity Other
0 1 0 N/A
Key: 0-Minimal 1-Slight 2-Moderate 3-Serious 4-Severe
POTENTIAL HEALTH EFFECTS
Routes of Exposure: Eye Contact, Skin Contact, Inhalation, Ingestion, Signs and Symptoms of Overdose
Eye: May cause minor eye irritation
Skin: No significant adverse effects are expected under anticipated conditions of normal use. Repeated,
prolonged exposure may cause slight flaking, tenderness and softening of skin.
Ingestion: No significant adverse effects are expected under anticipated conditions of normal
use. Excessive ingestions may cause central nervous system effects.
Inhalation: No significant adverse effects are expected under anticipated conditions of normal use. If
effects do occur, refer to FIRST AID section.
Signs and symptoms of Overexposure: Same as above.
Medical Conditions Generally Aggravated By Exposure: Material an/or its emissions may aggravate
preexisting eye disease.
Other Health Information: None


The main ingredient is propylene glycol which is used as a vehicle in some medications.

I'm not aware of a problem with birds, I'll check my veterinary sources. It appears that some avian vets use propylene glycol to dilute ivermectin when used in birds, so it must not be too toxic to birds.

In small amounts, it shouldn't be a problem to pets or humans.

Doug, DVM

Thanks for the detailed reply. That's the answer I was looking for. Aren't these forums great!! As a safeguard, I'll sponge up the excess antifreeze to remove most of it. The squirrels can drink out of the pool, but I'll have to come up with something for the birds. Things aren't supposed to freeze in LA.

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