Top 10 Household Pet Dangers
by Lee Wyatt
(last updated February 17, 2009)
It may surprise people, but the greatest threat to their pet is not the outside world, but the everyday items around the home. Believe it or not, but there are many things that can be found in any home that can end up causing anyone's fuzzy friend serious harm or even death. To that end, here are the top 10 household pet dangers, and a brief bit of advice on how to avoid them.
- Chemicals. Everyday household cleaners can poison, harm or kill a pet. Imagine your pets are like children and that they can get into anything. Just as you would lock everything down when you have kids in the house, you should do the same thing when it comes to having pets in the home. At the very least, you are going to want to keep the household chemicals out of their reach.
- Garbage. If you have a pet, then you should also have garbage cans that have locking lids. This keeps the pets from being able to access spoiled food, bones and other types of things that they should not get into.
- Human Food. One of the things that can harm almost any pet is through eating human food. Chocolate in particular is particularly hazardous (possibly fatal) to pets if they get their jaws into it. People food is for people, and pet food is for pets. The safest route is to keep your pets on a proper diet.
- Medication. Don't leave old medication lying around. A vast majority of medicine that is meant for human consumption can be harmful to your pets. Keep all medication (even the nonprescription kind) somewhere that the pets cannot reach.
- Dryer. Particularly with cats, the dryer is a favorite place to take a nap. If an owner isn't careful, they could accidentally end up putting Fluffy through a drying cycle. After using the dryer, just be sure that you have closed all the doors.
- Electrical Cords. Cat's like to play with things that dangle, and lets face it—electrical cords dangle. When these things become chew toys, then there is the chance (a pretty good one) that they can be electrocuted. Keep an eye on them.
- Old Toys. Even though toys can become a beloved member of the family, they can still be dangerous to your pet. It doesn't matter if the toy belongs to a pet, or to another family member, as they get older there is a greater chance that they can break as they get older. When things like this break off, they might accidently end up lodged in the throat of a pet causing them to choke.
- Outdoors. Even if your pet wants to spend time in the great outdoors, it is not the place for indoor pets. Such things as the weather, other animals (including large predators, if you live in rural areas) and vehicles are all a danger to your pet. Only let your pet outside in carefully controlled circumstances.
- Other Pets. Believe it or not, if your pets don't get along with each other, then they could cause each other great harm. Before bringing in any new pet, you should check to make sure that they can get along with each other. Since pets can become a member of the family, it's always a good idea to check with all family members before they have to put up with a new member.
- Human Error. It can happen, any number of accidents can happen and they almost always come back to human error. If you own a pet, you simply need to be careful that you do not step on, kick, or otherwise harm your beloved pet.
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