Kitten Proofing Your Home
Printable Safety Checklist For All New Kitten Owners
Kitten proofing your home isn't usually the first thing we think about before getting a new kitten, but we should!
Your kitten can get into all sorts of trouble! We all know about child-proofing, but what's involved in kitten-proofing your home? It's surprising how many potential hazards an average home contains.
Reviewing this Maine Coon Kitten safety page, and following its sage advice will go a long way toward keeping your kitten safe and healthy.
We'll have minimal photos on this page, because we are all business about safety!
Print the checklist and keep it on your refrigerator or other handy location. Remember to share it with other members of your household. It is amazing the places kittens will go to hide and play.
The following Maine Coon kitten safety checklist was shared with us by a Maine Coon cat breeder in my area. It covers so many potential dangers!
If you have a kitten, regardless of breed, you'll find this checklist so valuable!
When our kittens were young, Alice would hide behind the kitchen cabinet doors constantly. She loved small spaces and warm places. We almost squished her behind the trash a few times. This page of Maine Coon kitten safety tips brings back memories!
If you ever can't find your kitten, try dresser drawers, low cupboards, and other hiding places your new furry family member may have discovered during their explorations.
Maine Coon Kitten Safety; Dangers and Cautions
The greatest single danger and one which, by contract you have agreed to prevent, is your Maine Coon's going outdoors, except in a closely supervised situation, on a harness with the caregiver.
Not only are there the hazards of cars, other animals, parasites, but also of contracting fatal feline diseases.
The life expectancy of an outdoor cat is one-third to one-half that of an indoor cat!
It is imperative that you, your children, and your pet sitters remember to close doors and windows (and ensuring sturdy window screens are in place in open windows) so the kitten/cat cannot inadvertently escape.
Doing a head-check before leaving the house, when returning, and before bed is a good idea, especially in a multi-cat household.
If you have adult cats, keep your new kitten in their own room or "safe space" initially, separate from your older cat until introductions are complete.
Having lots of toys, a cat tree and scratching post are essential. A curious kitten needs safe places to play and safe toys to play with! From a kitten’s perspective, any small objects such as hair ties, paper clips, and more can qualify as cat toys.
Maine Coon Kitten Safety Inside The Home
All dangers, however, are not outdoors. As with human beings, most accidents occur in the kitten's new home.
A responsible new kitten owner must take precautions to cat-proof their homes (and vehicles) to reduce the risk of accidents for Maine Coon kittens.
It is an old wives' tale that cats have nine lives and that they instinctively will stay away from dangerous places or products!
Child-proof locks and childproof latches are very handy for kitten proofing your home and securing dangerous items. From a kitten's perspective, everything is fair game.
The following is a basic checklist of Maine Coon kitten safety hazards that can easily be removed or precautions that can be followed for kitten proofing your home:
(jump down for printable pdf version of this checklist)
Kitten Proofing Your Home - Checklist
- If you must permit smoking in your home, do so AWAY FROM THE CAT--outdoors, preferably or in a room apart. Ventilate afterwards. Studies show secondary smoke significantly shortens the cat's lifespan; when your cat is with you in a a closed car, DO NOT SMOKE.
- Electrical cords and phone cords should not be left dangling and should, as far as possible, be tucked neatly out of sight.
- Electrical outlets that are not in use should be covered with baby-proof plastic covers.
- Never walk away and leave an electrical appliance plugged in and on; chewing through the wires of a hot iron, for example, can be fatal.
- Never leave the kitten/cat in the kitchen with the gas turned on; Maine Coon kittens, like babies, do not know that the stove is hot or the flame is dangerous.
- Be careful to store sharp knives and kitchen implements after use.
- Always close the toilet seat and toilet lid; a kitten can drown.
- Never use toilet bowl deodorizers; should the kitten/cat drink the water, he/she will be poisoned.
- Always make certain firescreens are firmly shut.Never leave windows without screens open and make sure the screens you do have are tightly closed and of a secure weight.
- Be very careful of reclining chairs and sofa beds; always check that the kitten or cat has not crawled up in a pillow or underneath, as he/she can be crushed as you open or close the mechanism.
- Always check the refrigerator, dishwasher, washer, clothes dryer, washing machine and oven before turning on; Maine Coon kittens especially may crawl into to these enclosed spaces.
- Check closets to make sure kitten/cat has not gotten locked in without food or water.
- Be careful when closing doors so as not to catch your cat's tail or paws and cause him permanent harm.
- Keep the garbage cans off limits so the kitten/cat does not forage for a forbidden item.
- Be careful of dangling drapery and venetian blind cords, as children and cats can strangle.
- Always store cleaning supplies, chemicals, toilet cleaners, insect repellent, and medicines in non-openable, out-of-reach containers and cabinets.
- Be very careful about any pills or medications you take; one aspirin, for example, can kill a cat!
- Keep the following out of kitten’s reach: needles, thread and sewing supplies; rubber bands; plastic wrap; styrofoam; cellophane; cigarettes, yarn toys; toys with easily removable parts; paint and paint removers; ant poison; anti-freeze, ice melt; automotive supplies and fluids. Store plastic bags out of reach of your kitten.
- Be very careful what cleaning solutions you use on your floors, carpets, and upholstery; for the environment as well as for your cat's safety, it is best to use natural, non-toxic products only.
- Keep out of reach all poisonous substances and hazardous chemicals.
- Keep out of reach all poisonous plants; be careful that the kitten/cat does not drink any spilled water from these plants.
- Be attentive to temperature at home: avoid heatstroke by using air-conditioning, fans, or screened windows ajar; Maine Coons like it colder rather than warmer, and this is better for their coats, but needless, to say, the extremes of cold are as dangerous as the extremes of heat, both at home and in the car.
- Never leave a cat in a closed automobile with the windows shut; heatstroke is swift and fatal; in fact, do not leave the cat alone in a car at all!
- For auto travel use a hard-sided carrier and, if possible, secure it to the back seat with the seat belt through the handle.
- If the need arises to use an exterminator for insect or rodent pests, be certain that you discuss the chemicals to be used and when it will be safe for your cat to return to the treated areas; if using pest prevention on your own try for the natural products; be very careful of mouse traps as they can seriously injure your cat as well.
- Be attentive to your cats interaction with dangerous insects; bee stings can be fatal; poisonous spiders and other insects are a hazard, as are insects or rodents which have ingested chemicals to kill them; mosquitoes carry heartworm, so, again, screens are essential for the home and avoidance of the outdoors in mosquito season
- Fleas and Ticks are becoming a hazard even in urban areas, so please use protection from April to October. Consult your vet; we like topicals like Advantage, Frontline or Bio Spot.
Downloadable, printable PDF version:
Free Download: Kitten Proofing Your Home
The good news is that just like babies, kittens do grow up and grow out of the desire to get into everything.
Although you'll always have a certain level of caution around the house - like when closing the dryer door or hanging Christmas lights,
Kitten proofing your home is a huge part of pet care! This super helpful list was shared by Carla Maria Sullwold of Mannahatta Maine Coons. Thank You!
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