Keep your house clean and your pets safe
By Sally Perkins
Most people know to keep small children away from cleaning cupboards, but did you know that a number of popular household cleaning products pose even more of a risk to your pets?
A person or animal doesn't have to directly ingest a product because fumes alone can be enough to make them ill. Children are generally better supervised than pets and less likely to end up near floor or garden areas where they’re directly exposed to a toxic substance. On the other hand, most pets tend to be left to their own devices and permitted to roam free around the home and garden and can be in more danger as a result.
What to watch out for
Bathroom, kitchen, and window cleaners, laundry detergent, disinfectant, antifreeze, lawn fertilizer, pest poisons, and wood polish can all cause anemia in animals and diseases such as cancer and damage to liver and kidneys. Chlorine, bleach, ammonia, glycol ethers and formaldehyde are the most common ingredients toxic to pets. Make sure you check labels!
It’s easy to find versatile, natural alternatives to harmful chemicals when cleaning your home. Baking soda, vinegar, cornstarch, lemon juice and isopropyl alcohol are all highly effective. You can mix these together to create specialized solutions for use everywhere in your home. Alternatively, check out non-toxic commercial cleaning brands such as Ecover, Ecozone, and Method.
What to do if your pet gets poisoned
Get your pet to the vet if disaster strikes, such as if a friend, relative, pet-sitter or handyman accidentally uses something toxic in your home and your pet gets into it. Before leaving for your appointment, grab the packet or bottle containing the substance your pet has been exposed to or take a Smartphone pic of the ingredients. It’s also a good idea to contact the Pet Poison Helpline at 1-855-213-6680 and see if there is any specific emergency first aid you can give to your pet prior to him seeing a vet. There are various obvious signs you can look out for before you speak to a professional, such as loss of appetite, blistering of the skin and red eyes.
Using non-toxic household products isn’t just good for your pet, it’s good for you, your family and the environment too. Keep your eyes peeled for possible poisons and you and your family (animals and humans) can enjoy a clean and safe home life.
Above photo by Picsea on Unsplash