October is National Animal Protection and Safety Month!

In a recent survey by the National Association of Realtors, nine out of ten people consider their pets to be family members, and 81% of them said that pet considerations would be factor when looking at new living spaces. Another 52% said they had made renovations to their homes to accommodate their pets. That is amazing dedication and love. During this month dedicated to pet protection and safety, take time to review your own safety and health plans for your pet.

We all try and keep our homes as safe as possible for our pets. This is a great time to carefully review your own home and yard to see if there’s anything else you could or should be doing, to keep your indoor pets protected and to provide them with a stimulating and enriching environment.

There are lots of things to be aware of inside a home that could put pets in danger, and a room-by-room review is a great way to identify something that might have slipped by you before. Toxic chemicals, choking hazards and dangling electrical cords are just a few of the dangers for pets. Keeping all chemicals away from your pets is critical, especially as we move into the colder months when the use of antifreeze will increase. (See the helpful diagram of deadly pet toxins later in the newsletter.)

Does your cat chew on electrical cords like they’re toys? Moving them out of the way and using cord protectors, which are inexpensive and easy to use, are great ways to keep kitties safe. Do you have a senior pet and stairs in your house? You may want to figure out the safest place for your pet to be if climbing isn’t an option. Redfin.com shares some great ideas to help senior pets live their final years in safety and comfort with their owners. What else in your home might be dangerous for your pets?

It’s also important to spend some time examining the outside of your home. According to a story by Catio Spaces, many pet owners add fences to their yards, special safe areas outdoors and even territories within a house or yard where pets who don’t always get along can have their own space. Senior pet owners are looking at one-floor houses. If your pet is indoor/outdoor, take a walk around your yard and see if it’s secure, has any hazardous plants, and is free from things that might trip or injure your pet.

There are other practical ways to help keep your pets safe and protected. According to nationaldaycalendar.comyou should:

Be proactive. Keep all animals up to date on immunizations. Farmers, ranchers and pet owners, and hobbyists all follow the schedule set forth by their veterinarian.

Pet-proof your home and property. Remove or secure choking hazards and toxic chemicals. Make your home pet-friendly and safe.

Identify your animals. Place tags securely on collars and even label collars with your contact information. If you have more uncommon pets, take pictures in the event they get loose.

Ina disaster, have a plan. Who will be responsible for locating each animal in the house? How will you transport them? If it’s a fire, human life takes priority. However, place decals on windows and doors with the number of humans and each kind and number of pets residing in the home. Keep them up to date.

Learn basic first aid. Caring for your animal at home will prevent a minor injury from becoming severe. Always call your veterinarian if you are unsure.

Know your animal. If your animal’s behavior changes, watch for signs of illness. Is he injured or spent too much time in the heat? Contact your veterinarian before giving human over the counter medications.”

While taking the best care possible of our loved pets is always a priority, it’s never a bad thing to refocus and take a closer look at what we’re doing to keep them safe and protected!

CLICK HERE to find helpful ideas for living with senior pets.

CLICK HERE to see how pet owners are modifying their housing choices for their pets.

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