We all know how great it feels to have a big spring clean and get the house feeling fresh! What many people don’t consider, however, is the effect that household cleaning products can have on pets. Many of these cleaning products contain ingredients which can be harmful, or even deadly to your cats and dogs. That’s why, at The Insurance Emporium, we’ve put together our guide to pet safe cleaning products, so you can clean your home without worrying about the impact on your furry friend.
What ingredients are toxic to pets?
When you’re looking out for pet-safe cleaners, always check the label, as there are a few ingredients you’ll probably want to avoid.
High levels of ammonia can cause issues for pets and their owners, including irritation of the eyes, nose, throat, lungs and skin. It’s an ingredient that can be found in many cleaning products, including furniture polish, bathroom cleaners, oven cleaners and more.
Bleach can cause huge problems for cats and dogs. Contact with bleach can cause symptoms like irritation or lesions. But if your pet ingests bleach from chewing bedding, clothes or furniture, it can cause convulsions, nausea, vomiting, and can even be fatal.
Exposure to hydrogen peroxide can cause skin irritation or rashes on pets, and can be found in everything from bathroom cleaners and stain removers, to hair dye, toothpaste and mouthwash.
While you might associate chlorine with a trip to the local swimming baths, it’s a common ingredient in some household cleaners too! Look out for chlorine in your detergents, disinfectants and mildew removers, as it can cause dizziness, vomiting and laryngeal edema in pets, which can obstruct the airways.
What cleaning products may be unsafe to pets?
So what cleaning products should you avoid? If your cat or dog is prone to chewing, you should avoid using bleach, oven cleaner, dishwasher tablets or laundry detergents. These can cause irritation and burns to the throat and stomach if ingested, which can be fatal.
If you’re a cat owner, you should also avoid leaving sinks filled with bleach. Cats are known to be opportunists and drink from places other than their water bowl – that can include sinks and even toilets! If you’re using bleach to clean the toilet, leave the lid down, and avoid leaving sinks filled with bleach water.
What pet-safe alternatives are there?
It’s not all doom and gloom, though! Here are some easy, pet-safe alternatives to some common cleaning products.
If you’re worried about the disinfectants you’ll find at the supermarket, you could try looking in your local pet shop. Many pet shops will supply pet-friendly disinfectants, and might be able to advise you on which products to use to keep your cat or dog healthy.
Pet-safe floor cleaner
You could try making your own cleaning products too – it’s not nearly as difficult as it sounds! Simply mix around 1 part vinegar to 4 parts water for a floor cleaner that won’t damage your pet’s paws. Add some fresh lemon juice, and you have a pet-friendly all-purpose cleaner too, for an easy, homemade pet-safe disinfectant!
Homemade pet-friendly bathroom cleaner
Here’s another easy homemade cleaner that won’t harm your pets. Simply mix equal parts of baking soda, warm water and salt to create a thick paste, perfect for cleaning bathrooms, pots and pans. Scrub with a sponge to get at those tough stains, then rinse the surface with warm water.
What to do if your pet comes into contact with cleaning products
Coming into contact with cleaning products can be extremely harmful and even deadly to cats and dogs. Here are some common symptoms you’ll want to look out for:
– Red or blistering skin
– Loss of appetite, or trouble eating
– Severe drooling
– Coughing much more than usual
– Lethargy or lack of energy
– Rubbing their face, mouth or eyes with their paws
If you notice any of these symptoms, you should contact your vet immediately. The more information you have the better. Try and take note of which cleaning products your pets may have come into contact with, as this may be able to help your vet assess your pet.
We hope this guide to pet-safe cleaning products helps your house stay fresh while keeping your furry friends out of harm’s way! If you share your home with a cat or dog, you might want to think about taking out pet insurance. At The Insurance Emporium, our Pet Insurance policies can include cover for Vet’s Fees up to £8,000*. You could even get up to 30% discount^! Head on down to The Insurance Emporium to find out more.
* Cover for Vet’s Fees up to £8,000 available on lunar monthly Lifetime Gold policies.
^ The 30% discount is made up of 20% Introductory Discount plus 10% Multi-pet Discount (if appropriate). The Introductory Discount is available for the first 12 premium payments on lunar and calendar monthly policies or one premium payment on annual policies.
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