Many of us cat owners automatically assume our home is safe for our beloved pets, because safety from household hazards to cats are one of our priorities. However it is not until we see a list of potential hazards to cats and check our home that we realize how unsafe kitties surroundings may be. Moreover, more than half of pet owners do not even realize some of the dangers that are close by, like plants, medications, or even decorations. Having said that, here in this article today we will talk about some household hazards to cats and how to protect them. Here is a brief overview of the problem in this YouTube video.
Let us now look at the details of common household hazards to cats and how owners can minimize them
One of the most common household cat hazards for many years has been prescription medications and over the counter medicines, like painkillers, antidepressants, cold remedies and even dietary supplements. Having said that, it’s not something we may even realize or think about, but cats do like to explore, especially at night, and snatching a pill bottle from a nightstand to play with is actually quite common. Moreover, many of us have dropped a pill on the floor, and decided to not look for it but instead take another from the bottle, but nine times out of ten kitty will find it, and many medicines even in small doses can be deadly to your cat.
2. Household Plants
Household plants is also very high on the list of hazards to cats, and to many other types of pets too, and this area is where many owners are not sure about. Plants like lilies, aloe, azalea, and even mistletoe can be very harmful to your cat, some of which can be deadly. In fact the list of poisonous plants is too long to put in a single article, so if you are not sure about the plants in your home you can check an extensive list here at the the Humane Society’s website.
Keep in mind, that this may not be all plants that may be poisonous to your cat. Many cat owners do not have plants in the home, or keep them in separate rooms where the cat doesn’t have access, and unless you really know your plants it is not recommended to have them with pets. There is however no harm to your pet by having some catnip plants in your house or around the garden
3. People Food
Another hazard to your cat is people food, in fact there are many foods that we eat, but are not good for your cat at all, like Avocado, chocolate, onions, raisins, garlic and more. Chocolate ingested by cats, or dogs can cause death and it only takes a very small amount to make them sick. Therefore, it is important to keep these foods and candies away from pets, and if there are children in the home be sure that they know the dangers too. Moreover, the list of foods that are poisonous to cats is extensive, so here is a link to a list of the most common foods that are dangerous to your pet as compiled by The Humane Society of The United States
4. Household Cleaning Products
An even more potential household hazard is cleaning products, like bleach, detergents and other types of household cleaners, and most of these products if ingested can cause serious health problems and even death. There are however cat friendly cleaning products on the market that concerned cat owners can substitute for the more commercial ones.
Moreover, even ant, roach, mice and rat poison is extremely toxic to most pets, especially cats, so be sure to keep these locked away in a cupboard with child proof locks so your curious cat can’t get to them. Many of these things seem like common sense, but it’s so easy to finish using a cleaning product, and forget to put it away or get distracted for a minute and leave a lid off.
5. Leaving Doors and Lids Open
Probably one of the most easiest things to forget is closing doors and lids, and this can be very important when it comes to specific things, like the garbage can in the kitchen with chicken bones in it. A cat can climb inside and get these stuck in their throat, which can cause some serious problems. Moreover, cats love to sleep in the laundry room where it is warm and cozy, so it’s important to keep the tumble dryer door closed, and be sure to check the laundry basket before putting it in the dryer. Furthermore, oven doors and microwave doors should always be kept closed too, because cats love to explore and hide in newly opened places.
6. Dangers with Toilets
Toilet lids should also be put down at all times where cats are present, because toilet cleaners often leave residue behind, which is also toxic to your cat and can cause several health issues. Moreover, small cats and kittens can fall in to the toilet and drown, and you should always supervise when running a bath or sink of water, or keep the door closed to that room until you are finished. Having said that, while you’re in the bathroom or kitchen, be sure there are no small things lying on counter tops, like rubber bands, string or plastic bottle caps, or anything small enough that they can get in their mouth and swallow, as these can cause blockages internally.
7. Electrical Wiring
Electricity is a danger for all of us, including our cats, but it’s not just loose wiring we have to worry about, because cats have sharp teeth and they love to chew things, including electrical cords. Wherever wiring is in your home, try to cover them with plastic cord protectors, or alternatively you can spray them with something that tastes unpleasant, you can buy a non toxic spray at your local store. However, be sure to tie up multiple cords before hiding them to make it harder for them to play with, and give your cat plenty of other cat toys, so he doesn’t need to go looking for alternatives.
- Finally, when it comes to household hazards to cats, much of it is common sense, close lids, cover wiring, remove toxic plants or put them out of reach in a separate room where kitty don’t go, always put leftover foods in the garbage straight away, and lock away any home cleaning products.
- If you are in doubt about anything consult your vet, especially when it comes to plants, because some plants only the tuber may be poisonous, but other plants, like lilies, the whole plant can be dangerous, don’t take any chances.
- Keeping our cats safe is one of our top priorities, but it’s also easy to forget sometimes the simplest of hazards. Therefore, I hope this article today has helped you in giving your home the once over, just to be safe for you and your cat.
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