Pets like cats and dogs, especially young ones, can be very curious and love to explore the small nooks and crannies of your home. Unfortunately, not all areas are safe for them, or safe from them either! Keeping pets safe in your home and preventing damage to important items is no one’s responsibility but your own, and you owe it to yourself, your pet, and your family to safeguard the most dangerous or sensitive areas of your home from your overly curious four-legged family members.
Kitchens and Bathrooms
- Use childproof latches to keep little paws from prying open cabinets. Cats especially can be very determined – and surprisingly nimble – when trying to find ways into small, dark spaces.
- Keep all harmful chemicals, cleaners, laundry supplies, and even medications locked away or up on high shelves. Be sure to test how high your cat can jump with toys and treats before assuming that something is out of their reach.
- Keep trash cans closed or inside latched cabinets.
- Check for and block small spaces, nooks and crannies, or holes inside cabinets or behind washer and drier units.
- Keep all foods out of reach. Even if the contents are not dangerous, the wrapping might be.
- Keep the toilet lid closed to prevent accidental drowning or drinking of harmful cleaning chemicals.
Living and Family Rooms
- Keep dangling wires out of range of paws and mouths.
- Put away children’s games and toys when not in use.
- Keep knickknacks in storage or behind glass cabinet doors if you want them on display, especially if you have cats or kittens who are not coordinated enough to avoid knocking them over.
- Check all of the space your vacuum doesn’t quite reach but your pet can for dangerous items like string.
- Check if your house plants are toxic to animals and move them out of reach. Many houseplants are toxic to dogs or cats and can cause serious health complications if chewed or bitten.
- Make sure all of your heating or cooling vents have covers to prevent small pets falling in.
- Always be sure to clean up and put away all sewing and crafting notions, especially thread and string.
- Move all chemicals to high shelves or behind secured doors.
- Clean all antifreeze from the floor and driveway as even one small lick can be lethal to animals.
- Bang on your car hood before starting to ensure your pets – or neighborhood animals – have not climbed inside the engine or wheel wells for warmth.
- Keep all sharp items and tools up and out of reach.
- Keep laundry and shoes behind closed doors: Drawstrings and buttons can both cause major health problems if swallowed.
- Keep all cosmetics and lotions off accessible surfaces like your bedside table.
- Move electrical and phone wires out of reach of chewing or tugging.
- Be careful not to trap animals in closets or drawers when closing them. Cats and dogs will often look for comfortable, small places to curl up and fall asleep and may be hard to notice.