Pet owners will agree that our furry, feathered and even scaled friends are nothing short of family. As members of our family, their well-being is of great concern. But, even with all of that love, you might not have considered everything that can injure your pets inside your home.
That’s why we’ve put together a safety guide so you can make improvements to pet proof and safeguard your furry family members. Let’s break it down room by room:
Certain foods and objects may not always seem like a threat to us, but for little paws and curious minds, they can be disastrous. Some things that you should keep out of reach include:
- Macadamia nuts
- Coffee grounds
- Sharp knives and other pointy objects
General kitchen safety practices include:
- When cooking on the stove, try to use the back burners rather than the front burners. This way, if your pet unexpectedly jumps up, they are less likely to hurt themselves or spill something that could start a fire.
- Keep small, enticing objects like twist ties, batteries, cellophane, string and other tiny toy-like objects off the counter tops and doors to minimize the number of potential choking hazards.
- If you have a particularly curious pet, consider installing a gate or door to keep them out of the kitchen while you’re cooking.
- If your pet has figured out how to open cabinets, use childproof latches to stop them in their tracks
- When cleaning your kitchen and appliances, put your pet in another room or outside to avoid exposing them to hazardous chemicals.
Cats will generally leave most objects alone in your bathroom, but dogs are a different story. Some things that you need to be sure to keep out of reach include:
- Dental floss
- Household cleaners
General bathroom safety practices include:
- Keep towels, socks and any other dirty laundry out of your dog’s reach, as they could (and are likely to try to) chew them up, eat them or even choke on them.
- Keep sinks and tubs drained, as these can be a potential drowning hazard for smaller pets if they were to fall in.
- While some might not think much of it, it’s always best to close the toilet lid when leaving your bathroom. This is particularly true if you use harsh cleaners in your toilet bowl, as your dog may get sick from drinking the water.
Living Room & Office Safety
While we might feel relaxed and safe in our lounging rooms, there are potentially many dangerous objects and features that can hurt our pets. You should always put away smaller objects when you aren’t in that area, such as:
- USB storage devices
- Wireless mice
- Pens and pencils
- Paper clips and drawing pins
General living room safety practices include:
- Hide or cover all exposed wires and cables that could be chewed on.
- Keep fire lighters and matches out of reach, and cover your fireplace with a screen to shield your furry friends from fire and ash.
These areas are generally safe for our pets, but you can never be too careful, especially while your pets are young. Some things to keep in mind:
- Always keep hair ties, clips and pins out of reach.
- When you take your earrings, rings or watches off, instead of just laying them out in the open, tuck them away safely in a drawer or jewelry box.
- If you have a puppy, pick up your shoes. Remember, they are going to be teething and ready to chew, so if your belongings aren’t out of reach, you could be throwing out some of your favorite things come trash day.
Even if your pets are used to being outside, there are still some general precautions that you should take before letting them run free. Fences, for example are a great barrier to keep dogs from:
- Running into the road
- Getting into your neighbor’s gardens or trash bins
- Fighting other pets in the neighborhood
General outdoor safety practices include:
- Leaving fresh, cool drinking water out for pets to drink when left outdoors for extended periods of time
- Making sure that collars are close enough to the neck that pets can’t get snagged or caught on something
- Choosing pesticides and lawn care products that aren’t toxic to your pets.
Whether you’re a long-time pet owner or are planning to bring home a new pet, these pet-proofing tips will help to ensure that both your pets and you stay safe, happy and healthy.