How to Kitten Proof your Home
One of the good rules of thumb to apply here is to think about having a toddler around,
only a toddler in miniature size – mobile, curious but tiny! This means that you need to consider your home in terms of potential kitty hazards before the kitten gets too old and “into everything”.
Although there are some thing that you’d have to do to create a safe home for your toddler that aren’t necessary for a kitten
(such as power sockets and drawer locks), there are a few things you should take a look at with a critical eye as to whether or not they present a danger to your kitty.
If it’s hanging, or trailing, and it moves then it’s a toy to your kitten! Make sure that you tie up all loose wire and cables, or use cable tacks and attach them firmly to walls or along the baseboard,
counter top, up desk legs, etc so that there’s nothing to attract your cat’s attention. If he pulls a cable on your tea kettle, or computer keyboard,
there’s a big possibility that the item will end up on the floor and need replaced even if the kitten is unharmed so it makes sense to prevent this happening.
Trailing plants such as ivy may also need to be secured, although if kitty finds it, this could be just as hazardous to the plant as the kitten!
A kitten can also easily find itself entwined in – and possibly choke with – hanging fixings such as those on window treatments and lamps, so tie these up out of the kitten’s way – if he doesn’t see it moving, he won’t be attracted to it.
Like magpies, kittens are also drawn to small things that sparkle but which can be lethal if they swallow them so put your jewelry away in a box where he can’t see it.
Other small things such as paper clips, rubber bands, thumb tacks, threads from a sewing box, are all possible toys that are dangerous to you kitten so use commonsense when finding a place to store these once you have a kitty in your home.
Although kitty’s can’t open bottles or containers which have poisonous liquids in them, it is possible for them to poison themselves by consuming toxic substances in other formats so be careful where you spray bug spray, and cleaning materials.
This may seem like being overly cautious, but before you switch on any appliance such as the microwave, oven, washer or dryer, make sure that the kitten has found its way inside!
What a kitten loves as much as his toys is warmth, and it will seek out the warm places in your home. A quick check will ensure a tragic accident doesn’t occur.
Kittens are tiny and fragile, and they have no concept of danger, so limiting the amount of potential hazards will create a safer environment for your kitten to explore.
Small Kids and Kittens
The smaller your child, the more interested he will be in the new kitty. It will be his baby, his companion, his toy ….only the kitten isn’t a toy and that’s something that you need to make very clear about right from the get-go.
Even a toddler can understand that they are not to pick kitty up if they are told firmly enough.
Your child is fragile against the outside world, but the kitten is fragile even against a small child and can easily be hurt by simply being loved too much!
Young kids have a habit of wanting to hug the kitten tightly, and this can be fatal as it’s easy to restrict cat’s air supply.
Picking up the kitten in a rough way, or by its legs can create the need for a visit to the veterinary where you and your child (if there) will be admonished for ill treating the kitty.
It can also create internal injuries on a young kitten that doesn’t have much body fat to protect its internal organs.
The best way to bring young child and kitty together safely is by first not allowing your child to pick up the kitten until you are sure he can do it in the correct manner, and by teaching him to fuss the kitty while the kitty is on your knee.
The kitten will soon follow your child around if he feels safe, and within no time at all you’ll probably find you have two “kittens” crawling around the floor as your child becomes the kitty’s shadow!
By first teaching the safe way of fussing, and then playing, you decrease not only the chances of the kitten being unintentionally, but seriously,
harmed – but also the chances of your child being scratched by a fearful cat who is being held too tight.
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