While cats are adored for their beauty and mystery, their other famous feline trait of curiosity sometimes causes a lot of trouble. Cats provide companionship and happiness, but they can be destructive if you aren’t careful. If you are considering adding a four-legged friend to your home, follow these five safety tips to help prevent any unexpected emergency room visits.
Beware of toxic plants
Since cats are curious creatures, they may feel compelled to chew on and taste accessible houseplants. Unfortunately, almost all plants can cause gastrointestinal upset to cats if ingested, with some plants causing worse symptoms than others. Since cats are remarkably adept at climbing onto tables and leaping onto counters, it is advisable to avoid houseplants all together. You can purchase or grow special cat grass if you or your feline really enjoy plants.
Hide fragile items
While running and frolicking around your home, your cat may inadvertently knock over a treasured item or heirloom that you thought was safely out of reach. For owners of active felines, place fragile items out of reach or store them in a safe location. If your cat knocks over glassware, he or she may be at risk of injury from broken glass shards. A heavier object could fall on your cat and cause serious bodily harm.
Whenever you are finished using an electrical cord, unplug it instead of leaving it in the wall. When cats or other pets chew on a power cord they could suffer a nasty shock. If you are afraid you will forget to unplug a cord, use a protector or coat the cord with hot sauce or a non-toxic spray available at most pet stores. A severe shock can be fatal to small animals.
Check laundry and bathrooms
If your cat has access to all or most of your rooms, you’ll want to routinely check the house to make sure your pet stays out of trouble. In the bathroom, shut the toilet seat lid to prevent your cat from accidentally falling in. Make sure that cleaning supplies and medicine are stored in a cabinet that he or she cannot open. In the laundry room, keep the door to the dryer closed when not in use and check your dryer before starting it. Cats like to hide in dark, secluded places, but a dryer is a disastrous place for a cat nap. For windows, tie a knot in the cords to prevent possible strangulation.
Secure any exits
To make sure your pet doesn’t slip out unnoticed, securely close window screens and make sure the front door stays shut. Explain to friends and family who come to visit that your pet is not allowed outdoors. As a preventative measure, your cat should always wear a collar with an attached name tag stating your address, phone number, and your pet’s vaccinations.
At Oceanside Veterinary, we understand how much your pet’s safety and happiness matters to you. If it’s time for a routine check-up, or if you are concerned about your pet’s health, give us a call at (843) 795-7574 to set up an appointment with our expert staff. We look forward to providing you with the best animal care in the Lowcountry.