Keeping your Cat Safe – Household Hazards

Cats are curious creatures, and their curiosity can put them in dangerous situations. By cat proofing their living environment you can keep your fur family member safe and protect your home from damage. Ideally, this is done before bringing your new pet home. But to be able to cat proof your home, you will need to know what the most common household dangers are to your cat. So, let’s have a look at that below.

Toxic plants

There are a lot of houseplants that are toxic to cats, and while most felines won’t be interested in chewing plants around the house, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Extra precautions should be taken around kittens as they might be more tempted to take a bite out of a plant. While in some cases ingestion of toxic plants will only lead to minor symptoms, in other cases it can lead to internal damage which might require prolonged aftercare with medication or special diets, or can even be fatal. This is especially the case when treatment is delayed. Some common house plants that are toxic to your cat are the Sago Palm(Cycas Revoluta), Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum) Aloe Vera, Cutleaf Philodendron (Monstera deliciosa), Pothos (Epipremnum aureum), Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia), Jade plants (Crassula), Snake plant (Dracaena trifasciata) and the English Ivy (Hedera Helix). Special care should be taken around Lilies as they are extremely dangerous to cats, and even drinking the water from the vase can lead to poisoning and acute  kidney failure. Take extra care during the holiday season as many seasonal plants are toxic to cats.


Windows and Balconies

Windows and balconies pose a potential threat to your cat. They can fall or jump down from the balcony when slipping or miscalculating a jump, especially when hunting a bird that might have landed on the window or balcony. While it’s true that cats often land on their feet, a fall from a height might leave them with life-threatening, and/or life long injuries, which are also referred to as “high-rise syndrome”. Another danger is seen in windows that only open from the top. In these types of windows cats can get stuck in the small point in the lower part of the window when trying to get out. Injured and indoor cats might hide away in fear after getting outside and end up getting lost. By securing your balcony and windows you can prevent your cat from falling down, getting stuck, or getting lost. 

Table food

Not all foods that are suitable for human consumption are safe for cats to eat. Chocolate is toxic to cats and also raisins, grapes, onion and garlic can lead to poisoning if ingested in certain amounts. Cooked bones are dangerous as they can splinter and get stuck in the mouth and digestive tract.

Medication and cleaners

Keep medication and cleaners out of reach from your cat. Cleaners that leak pose a potential threat to your cat when they walk through them and subsequently lick themselves clean. Even when diluted when used for cleaning, it’s advised to wait till floor and surfaces are dry before letting your cat walk on them. Keep medication and cleaners out of reach to prevent accidental ingestion. Don’t give your cat medication for humans without consulting a veterinarian. Common medication for humans might be toxic to your cat, like paracetamol which is extremely toxic to them.


The most obvious danger of cables is that they can get chewed on and can cause electrocution. While most adult cats won’t be interested in chewing cables, a curious young kitten might take a bite to explore. Besides that cables can be chewed on, they also pose a potential strangulation hazard if they are dangling. Make sure that all cables are safely out of reach of your cat.

Washing Machines

Always check inside your washing machine before turning it on. Some cats love to hide in the machine, especially when there is a layer of clothes in there waiting to be washed. While most won’t expect washing machines to kill cats, sadly it does happen.


Salt Lamps

These increasingly popular lamps are made out of Himalayan salt rocks. Salt lamps pose a potential danger to cats who like licking them, as the excess ingestion of salt can lead to salt poisoning. Depending on the severity of the poisoning, this will lead to diarrhea, vomiting, seizures and the worst case death. 

Strings/threats(with Needles) /Rubber Bands/Hair ties

These items are often very inviting for cats to play with, but pose a threat when accidentally ingested. Strings, rubber bands, and hair ties might cause life-threatening obstructions in the digestive tract. Needles are often found in combination with threats and can accidentally get ingested when the cat is playing with the string. Strings can also dangerously get tangled around the cat and cut blood flow to limbs or tail, or can lead to strangulation when tangled around the neck. 


By being aware of the dangers around your home, cat proofing adjustments can be made to keep your fur family member safe. If you would like to know more about our cat sitting or cat relocation services. Feel free to contact us. We will be happy to help.

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