SAFETY FIRST!

Just like small children, cats (especially kittens) can run into danger in the home.  Some danger points are:

Irons:   never leave the iron unattended while in use. The cat may pull on the cord.

Toilets:   young kittens can easily fall in and drown. Keep the toilet seat down and the loo door shut.

Washing machines and tumble dryers: never leave the doors open. The cat may go in to sleep and not be noticed when the machine is started.

Electric cables: cats and kittens sometimes chew these. Protective sleeves are available.

Empty cans:   squash before discarding. Cats can get their heads stuck. Wild animals may also get stuck in an empty can so you will be helping save the lives of wild creatures too.   Glass jars may also tempt the cat to put its head inside.

Electric cookers: the hob stays very hot after switching off. Make sure you put the lid down. If the cat jumps on a hot ring the paws may stick so the cat cannot jump off. Imagine the agony and injury this would cause.

Hot food: keep lids on saucepans while cooking, and if hot food is left unattended in the pan.

Baths: hot water is dangerous so do not allow your cat into the bathroom when filling the bath. He or she could slip and fall in.  The sides may be too slippery to allow escape.

Chemicals: some can be absorbed through the skin or when the cat licks itself clean. Particularly dangerous are anti-freeze, brake fluid, Jeyes Fluid, some weedkillers, slug pellets, paraffin, white spirit, wallpaper paste, and any compound containing phenol (coal tar) such as creosote (often found in wood preservatives).
Note: motor oil should be removed as soon as possible with Debs Swarfega* (best) or washing up liquid. Rinse well. If a lot of the body is covered, ask your vet for advice. *Debs Swarfega is a hand cleaner. Rub into dry fur.

Chocolate: Chocolate high in cocoa solids (e.g. Belgian chocolate) is extremely poisonous to dogs and cats. It contains a substance called theobromine, and there is no antidote. Even a small amount can kill so please keep this type of confection well away from your pets. If ingested get to a vet urgently.

White Eared Cats: Cats with white ears are liable to contract squamous cell carcinoma, a type of cancer caused by sun damage. If your cat has white ears and goes outside in fine weather, please apply a safe sub blocking cream to its ears and nose. Your veterinary surgeon will advise.

Plants: Many plants are toxic to cats, especially lilies. A full list can be found here.


All this advice except white eared cats and some plants also applies to puppies and dogs.

Always keep your veterinary surgeon's practice and emergency numbers handy.