Cat Poisoning – Toxins in Your Home

Are you aware of the different cat poisons lurking in your home? I think you would be surprised at just what can be either very dangerous or even lethal to our cats. Cats are curious about their environment and love to explore, just like small children. And just like small children, sometimes they will eat something that is poisonous to them.

If your cat is allowed outdoors and you have recently fertilized your lawn or put out some snail bait, are you aware that they could both be toxic to your cat? Cats will eat grass for minerals and vitamins or to induce vomiting to get rid of a fur ball. If your cat rolls on the newly fertilized lawn, or walks onto the snail bait when moving through the garden, the poisons will not only be on the fur, they will be on the pads of your cat’s paws so next time she licks her paws to groom herself, she is licking the poison. Not only that, when she licks her coat to wash herself, guess what is going into her body with each lick. You cat might eat a mouse that has died from ingesting rat poison or snail bait. Poisons are not only ingested this way, they can also be absorbed through the skin.

Have a look under your kitchen sink, laundry cupboard or in your garage. Bleach, insecticides, cleaners, solvents, antifreeze, tarnish removers, lubricating oils and even laundry or dishwashing detergents can be downright dangerous or even lethal. If any of these have labels warning of the danger to children, they are most likely a danger to your cat as well. If something has been spilled on a surface where your cat might tread, mop it up immediately. Remember, cats can jump up onto surfaces small children cannot reach.

Please, check the contents of any weed killers, snail or slug bait and even growth enhancers and use environmentally friendly ones. Even some of these carry warnings regarding domestic pets so be alert. Good old fashioned manure might not smell very nice, but it does a wonderful job on the garden and your cat will be safe. Some poisons such as antifreeze, cough syrup and some fertilizers may actually taste pleasant to a cat.

Some products won’t just poison your cat, contact could burn the skin, internally as well as externally. Anything caustic for instance will burn the throat both going down and coming back up again. Motor oil from those home mechanics who regularly service their own cars can poison maine coon cat for sale the cat’s digestive system and cause kidney damage if too much gets on their fur. This can happen so easily by the cat rolling on the floor where oil has been spilt, or by it misjudging when jumping onto the bench and into the waste oil container. If this happens, use a mild detergent in lots of warm water to wash the cat. Seek vet advice if your cat is in any difficulty or if you are worried.

If your cat does accidentally get poisoned, it could go into shock, have seizures or convulsions and lose control of its muscles, including the bowels. This can be followed by respiratory failure, paralysis and death. Less toxic poisons can make your cat overly sleepy and/or lethargic, or even irritable and hyperactive. Many toxins will cause your cat to vomit and /or drool. They can cause excessive urination and diarrhoea.

If you suspect your cat has been poisoned, contact your vet immediately. Most will have a 24 hour emergency number. You should have this number on your pet first aid box. Where possible, keep the packaging of the product consumed to show to the vet can see what ingredients are in it. Keep your cat indoors where you can watch it closely. Don’t induce vomiting until you have spoken to the vet as some chemicals will cause further damage to your cat’s throat. Some cat poisons will only take a few hours to kill your cat so make sure it can’t escape.

Please, get all potentially toxic substances out of your cat’s reach, behind a lock if possible. Cats can open many cupboards with a flick of a paw. Clean up any spills, especially antifreeze, immediately. Cat poisoning is life threatening, just like with your children and time is of the essence. Your cat is literally looking to you to prevent this happening and to keep it safe.