Dangers Inside your Home

dog on the couch

When it comes to places that we feel safe, virtually nothing beats the comfort and security of being in our own home. Your pet almost certainly feels the same. However, unless you are a very experienced pet parent (and sometimes, even if you are!) you may not realize that while your home, compared to outside, is very safe, there are actually many hidden dangers lurking within your walls.

As a caring and committed owner, keeping your pet safe is undoubtedly one of your biggest priorities. To help you do this, and in light of it being poison prevention awareness month for the veterinary community, we have identified some of the most common dangers in your home, and what you can do to protect your pet.

Dangers in the kitchen

The kitchen is undoubtedly one of the most dangerous areas of the home for humans and pets alike. With numerous sharp instruments and plenty of potentially toxic substances to contend with, it is essential to supervise your furbaby carefully when she spends time in the kitchen. Some of the hazards that you should be aware of include:

- Knives, scissors and other sharp objects

- Dishwasher detergent

- Laundry detergent

- Fabric softener

- Cleaning products

Another key danger in the kitchen is the presence of human food. While it is very tempting to treat your furry friend to a nibble (or whole portion!) of whatever you are eating, there are many things that we eat that can make an animal quite unwell. Examples include:

- Chocolate

- Sugar-free candy and gum

- Fruit containing pits and seeds

- Anything containing onion, garlic or chives

- Uncooked or undercooked meat/fish

- Nuts

- Yeast dough

- Grapes and raisins

- Avocado

Alcohol and caffeine drinks should also be avoided entirely. Make sure you clear any plates away, don’t leave snacks in bags and keep drinks out of reach of your pet.

Dangers in the bathroom​​​​​​​

The bathroom is another room in the house that often contains dangers and toxic substances. If you are running a bath, make sure that your pet can’t get in and become stuck, and always run the hot and cold faucets at the same time to minimize the risk of a burn injury. You should also ensure you keep the toilet lid down at all times and invest in a child/pet lock if your furbaby is particularly curious. Pets tend to have a habit of drinking from the toilet bowl, despite having their own fresh water in another room in the house. However, if you use chemicals in your tank or bowl, your pet could become very sick.

Most bathrooms also contain an array of potentially dangerous or toxic products, including:

- Toothpaste

- Mouthwash

- Floss

- Razors

- Medicated and non-medicated shampoos, shower gels etc.

- Soap

- Human and/or pet medications

Any items that could pose a threat to the health of your pet should be locked in a secure cabinet or placed firmly out of the grasp of your pet’s paws.

General household and yard dangers

While the kitchen and bathroom tend to be the most high-risk areas of the home, there are some other general household dangers that you should be aware of. These include:

- Electrical cables. These can be tempting for your pet to chew on but doing so could put her at risk of electrocution.

- Air fresheners, plug-ins andpot pourri.

- Glue, nail polish and cosmetics

- Pool chemicals

- Paint and paint thinners

- Fertilizer

- Pesticides

- Garage chemicals including antifreeze, brake fluid, washer fluid and gasoline

- Plants, trees, shrubs and flowers

If you would like more information on the dangers inside your home and how you can keep your pet safe, contact our local veterinary office.