What common household goods are toxic to cats?

Cats are wonderful indoor pets, but human homes are filled with items that could be dangerous for them. As a general rule, keep all chemicals, including medications, locked away where your cat cannot reach them, and choose only cat-friendly house plants. Here is a more specific, but by no means exhaustive, list of common household goods that are toxic to cats.

Both Human and Veterinary Medications: Did you know that just a single tablet of an over the counter NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, such as Advil or Aleve) could be deadly to your cat? Likewise, permethrin is a common topical flea medication for dogs, but is extremely toxic to cats. Lock up all medications and never give anything to your cat except under veterinary advice.

Plants: A surprisingly high number of plants are toxic to cats, as this list from the ASPCA shows, and lilies are among the worst. Surprisingly, though, poinsettias are the most commonly cited poisonous plant, but their toxicity is mild at best. Check the list before bringing in house plants and always err on the side of caution.

Lawn Chemicals: If you allow your cat to go outside, be very cautious about the chemicals you use on your lawn or garden. Pesticides, insecticides, weed killers, and the like pose an enormous threat to cats. Your cat may walk through these chemicals and then ingest them when she cleans her feet. If you let your cat outside, by supervising their trips you will be more in control of potential hazards they may encounter.

Household Cleaning Products and Chemicals: Detergents, carpet cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners, and other common household cleaning products can be lethal to your cat. Also exercise caution with bug sprays, antifreeze, liquid potpourri, glow sticks, and many other common items. Be sure to cat proof your home by locking these products up where your cat cannot reach them.

Established in 1994, The Cat Hospital focuses solely on the health and well-being of cats. Our veterinarian, Dr. Maureen Ricksgers, has worked exclusively with cats since 1988, and our entire team consists of cat lovers who work hard to create a calm, quiet, feline-friendly hospital setting. If you are ready to reduce your cat’s stress levels and get started with a veterinarian who truly understands what cats need, we invite you to call us today at (413) 586-2287.

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