Cat-Proofing Your Home

Like children, cats are curious and need a safe environment to keep them out of harm’s way. Are you wondering how to cat proof your house? Here are seven household dangers to take into consideration as you update your home:

  1. Houseplants
    Plants are a common hazard for cats. For example, lilies are beautiful but are toxic to cats and can lead to kidney failure and death. Find out if any of your houseplants are toxic and keep them out of reach, or better yet, out of your house.
  1. Human food
    Become familiar with human foods that can be toxic. Chocolate is commonly known to cause harm to animals, but other foods like xylitol, onions and grapes are less known hazards.
  2.  Medications
    Don’t make assumptions about what your cat will or won’t get into. It’s best to store medications in secure cabinets with latches.
  1. Cleaning Supplies
    You wouldn’t store chemicals and household cleaners where your children can reach them. Keep your cat safe by storing them out of your cat’s reach. Keep all cleaning products and laundry soaps in a cabinet that is off-limits to your cat and use a childproof latch. When cleaning a room, keep your cats out until the room is dry. Remember, cats groom themselves frequently, and whatever chemicals and cleaners you used can harm your cat when they lick their feet while grooming.
  1. Automotive products
    Garages are often full of hazardous chemicals, pesticides and fertilizers. It’s best to keep your cat out of there altogether, but quick and curious kitties can dart into the forbidden area, so make sure all chemicals are safely put away. Some chemicals, such as antifreeze, have an appealing sweet smell that can entice a curious pet for a taste. Unfortunately, even a mere taste can be lethal. Insecticides, rodenticides and fertilizers can also be very toxic. Pesticides are the most dangerous, however, because they are often sweetened or scented to attract pests, and cats can become their unintended victims.
  1. Toilets
    There’s another reason why we should listen to our mothers and keep the toilet seat down: No one wants to fish their cat out of the toilet bowl, which is a harbor of harmful bacteria and cleaning chemicals. So after flushing, remember to always put the toilet lid down after every use.
  2. Linear Objects
    Watch out for seemingly innocuous items such as yarn, string, ribbons, tinsel, and dental floss. Although they appear harmless, when ingested linear foreign bodies can cause an intestinal obstruction that requires surgical treatment.

You can never protect your cat from every possible hazard. However, you can take these measures to make your home safer for your pets and protect them from these common household dangers. To find out more about common pet dangers and what to do when emergency strikes, download the Pet First Aid app by American Red Cross.