A cat should be safe at home. But every household has substances that can pose a hazard to your cat if he’s exposed to them. Learn about some of the common hazards around your home and ways you can protect your feline friends from harm.
Plants Indoor and outdoor plants can pose a risk to your cat. Ingesting just a small piece of some common ornamental plants such as poinsettias could be enough to make a cat ill, and swallowing a sizable amount could prove fatal. Lilies are especially toxic to cats; they can cause life-threatening kidney failure if ingested even in tiny amounts. Some plants that are toxic to cats include (but are not limited to):
Poinsettias • Lilies • Mistletoe • Holly • Tulips • Foxgloves • Philodendrons • Amaryllises • Baby’s Breath • Sweet William • Hydrangeas
You want to make sure your cat has the best kind of food for their nutritional needs. From time to time, you may be tempted to give her table scraps and special treats, but bear in mind that certain foods can be poisonous to her. Here’s a look at some of the most toxic foods for cats. These foods include (but are not limited to):
Grapes • Raisins • Onions• Anything containing xylitol, an artificial sweetener • Chocolate • Avocados • Raw Eggs, Raw Meat & Bones
Your cat’s life and well-being depend on the type of food she eats. By keeping poisonous and hazardous foods out of her reach, as well as making sure she consumes a balanced food, you are helping her stay healthy.
Many of the chemicals around your house can present a hazard for your feline friends. Keep these materials in a place your cats can’t reach, and ensure any spills are cleaned up promptly. Products such as bleach, detergents, and disinfectants can cause severe gastrointestinal and respiratory tract distress if swallowed by a cat.
Pesticides • Insecticides and Rodenticides • Garden products • Weed killers • Antifreeze • Household cleaners (including bleach, detergents, and disinfectants)
Some cold relievers, antidepressants, dietary supplements, and pain relievers—most notably such commonly used substances as aspirin, acetaminophen (Tylenol®), and ibuprofen are a common cause of feline poisoning. Cats are apt to swallow pills that have been left on night stands or counter tops or have been accidentally dropped on the floor.
Although created for household animals, such preparations as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), heartworm preventatives, antibiotics, and nutritional supplements can be toxic if improperly administered.
What should I do if I think my cat has ingested something toxic?
Call your veterinarian immediately. If you are aware of the toxin that your cat was exposed to, obtain a sample or a label to bring to the veterinarian. If your vet is not available, try a local emergency veterinary clinic or animal poison control help hotline:
Pet Poison Helpline – 855-289-0358
ASPCA Animal Poison Control – 888-426-4435