Posted by MJTM | Posted in Family Life | Posted on 01-02-2012
Tags: guest post, pets
Start by looking at your home from the eyes of a curious, playful fur ball and consider what’s worth protecting
You will certainly be excited when you first bring your cute, net kitten home. However, owning a kitten is like having a newborn around the house—one that gets into everything and one that can, potentially, cost you a bundle! Having a new pet involves is a huge responsibility and cost, especially if that pet is an active, playful, curious and mischievous kitten. Unfortunately, a kitten’s natural curiosity can be fatal and costly to it’s new owner if you don’t kitten-proof your home ahead of their arrival to safe-guard your belongings and kitten’s wellbeing.
The key to kitten-proofing is to look at your home through the eyes of a curious cat. Pick out everything that looks like a fun toy—it could include needles and thread, electrical cords, etc.—and if it’s something that could be dangerous put it out of kitten’s reach or get rid of it. Or else you can expect your kitten will need to be rushed to the veterinarian to dislodge something from its throat. Emergency vet surgery is not only extremely costly, ranging from $600 to $1,600 for an obstruction in the throat or bowel, plus the Canadian drugs to treat your kitten, which can cost hundreds of dollars, even when purchased online. Unfortunately, strewn objects left around the home can also end in the tragic death of your beloved new pet.
Each room in your home will have dangers in store for a curious, playful feline. That’s why I’ve put together the following 12-step guide to kitten proofing your home…
Explore your home for items that kitty might break and for harmful substances that he or she could eat. Don’t forget to look on high shelves and in hidden nooks. Don’t underestimate a high spot a kitten can jump to or squeeze into—if you can see it; they can reach it!
Keep small items that kitten might ingest locked away in air-tight containers. This includes items like needles and thread, holiday ribbon, hair ties, and anything stringy that might appear a plaything to a small cat.
Tuck away the cords to your window blinds or curtains. Your cat will jump to play with these and will be strangled if he or she gets tangled up. Simply tuck and tie cords using a rubber band so they don’t’ hang down.
Trust me when I say that air-tight wastebaskets and kitchen garbage cans will be your saving grace—that’s if you don’t want kitten littering through your garbage and eating whatever he or she finds. Or else kitten may end up in emergency getting his or her tummy pumped or taking a costly remedy for indigestion.
Keep your dryer door closed. Kittens seek out dark, warm places to hide and to sleep because it makes them feel secure. However, if your kitten hides in the dryer and can’t get out, they could die.
Same goes for your cupboard doors and dresser drawers—if a cat can get inside to snoop, he or she will. Kittens limbs can be broken or injured you close a drawer and they can eat toxic cleaners kept under your sink. Use baby-safe fasteners if your cabinets don’t shut tight.
You know that the toilet is not for drinking, but kitty doesn’t. So keep the lid down to stop kitten from falling in and drowning or injuring him or herself.
Keep things like antifreeze in a separate shed or garage with the door closed. Anti-freeze, although tasty to cats and dogs is fatal when ingested. Plus fomepizole, the drug used to treat antifreeze toxicity in pets costs about $240 per vial (with multiple vials required based on toxicity levels and pet weight).
Cover or tuck electric cords under the wall trim to avoid any playful bites from kitten.
Check online to see if your household plants are toxic to cats. If there are green leaves, your kitten will chew on these, but plants like lilies and poinsettias are poisonous.
Change to animal-safe household products—such as insect repellant, floor cleaner, window cleaner and counter-top sanitizer.
If your kitten is a little too curious for his or her own good, use a natural, animal-friendly bitter Apple or lemon scented spray, which cats dislike, to deter them.
Post by Brenda