Pet owners, be careful. Some plastic pet toys contain harmful and potentially deadly chemicals that can be toxic to your pet.

Philippines toxics watchdog group BAN Toxics has raised the alert on squeaky plastic pet toys that contain undisclosed toxic plastic additives that may put humans and animals at risk from exposure to health-damaging chemicals. They recently found colourful squeaky “chameleon” pet toys that may pose this harm, being sold in Manila.

Squeaky pet toys are popular as they give out a unique sound which makes the toy fun and entertaining; and ideal for promoting pet animals’, hunting instincts and chewing needs.

But be warned: Plasticisers such as phthalates – known endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) – are the most commonly used chemical additive in such toys. The chemicals are used as a softener, stabilizer and colourant; and to improve elasticity and product durability. EDCs can mimic, block, or interfere with hormones in the body’s endocrine system. They have been associated with a diverse array of health issues.

“We (advise) pet lovers to be careful in buying squeaky pet toys and always check the labels. Harmless-like toys may expose not just children, but also pets to toxic EDCs such as phthalates,” says Thony Dizon of BAN Toxics.