Having an indoor cat means you don’t have to worry about the dangers the outdoors can bring to your feline, and it’s fast becoming a popular choice with lots of owners. However, lots of everyday things around the home can be hazardous for curious paws, in particular young kittens, so it’s important to make sure your home is cat-friendly to help keep them free from harm.
Just as parents will remember doing for small children, it’s a good idea to think about the different rooms around your house and any areas that small creatures could find their way into, on or under. Why not get on your hands and knees to make yourself on the same level as your cat to help see objects from their point of view? Cats love to climb, so be sure to consider high places too and, if there are any unsafe ones, use other objects to prevent easy access to these and look to provide alternatives for your cat to seek out. You’ll be surprised what spaces your cats may be drawn to, so if you notice this happening then try to work out any reasons behind it. For instance, cats have been known to sneak into the space at the back of ground level fridges or curl up in the bath or sink! In the case of baths and sinks this is temperature related due to the cool surface they provide, so think about whether your cat has enough cool spaces, shade from windows and water. Likewise, open washing machines or tumble dryers are a very tempting dark, warm space that can look like the perfect feline bed! So make sure any appliances have all doors closed and locked if possible, and always be sure to do a quick check before use.
Cats are naturally drawn to vegetation, so for those restricted to indoors this can make any plants or cut flowers around the home very tempting. Lots of household plants are, however, harmful for cats if ingested and have an irritating effect on cats’ gastrointestinal system. If your cat always remains inside then it’s best to remove all potentially hazardous plants or flowers, such as lilies, to prevent any health risks.
Most households these days have a well-stocked medicines supply that includes pain killers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen, and various flu and cold remedies. These can be toxic to pets, so should always be kept in an out of reach place and not lying around on any surfaces. Cats can be crafty, and have been known to get through packaging so don’t take the risk. This goes for any creams and lotions too, which can irritate their skin and cause a reaction, so store these away and keep them for your skin only! And never let your cat lick creams and lotions off your skin once applied to yourself as these can cause toxicity for catss, especially psoriasis creams.
The kitchen is an obvious place where there can be lots of potential dangers, and somewhere that cats are often drawn to due to the association with food! Be mindful of particularly harmful common food for cats (see some of these listed here) and avoid leaving any out wherever possible. Even at times when you’re rushing, keep leftovers stored away safely in the fridge or cupboard – that way you know they’ll still be there when you get back.
There’s a reason for the saying ‘curiosity killed the cat’; our feline friends can be very inquisitive creatures so make sure when they’re home alone they won’t find themselves in harm’s way by cat-proofing your house to prevent any accidents and help keep them safe.