Hidden Hazards for Your Indoor Cat

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We all want is to keep our cats safe and healthy. But you may not realize that even your home can pose a risk for your kitties. Let's talk about recognizing these dangers and some simple solutions to keep your cat safe.

Medications

Keep all medications for humans out of reach of your cat (what constitutes "out of reach," of course, will depend on how crafty/determined your cat is to get into things he shouldn't). Even common medicines like acetaminophen and ibuprofen are unsafe for cats. Also, some over-the-counter flea and tick treatments may not be safe for your furry companions to ingest or absorb in large amounts, so keep these away, as well.

Plants

Many common indoor houseplants are toxic to cats. Lillies are the worst offenders; even low exposure, such as eating a leaf or grooming pollen from fur, can cause kidney failure in cats. Other common houseplants to avoid include baby’s breath, begonias, dieffenbachia, hyacinth, jade, poinsettia, primrose, and tomato plants.

Foods

Many human foods are unsafe for your cat. Nuts, seeds, and pits contain compounds that are toxic and can also pose a choking hazard. Common cooking ingredients like yeast dough, garlic, onions, onion powder, salt, and even raisins should be kept away from your cats. Also on the no-no list are chocolate, coffee, and any candy or gum containing the synthetic sweetener Xylitol, which is toxic to pets.

Choking Hazards

We all know cats love to play with string. And everything else, But items like sewing thread, dental floss, and rubber bands can be choking hazards for your cat. If ingested, these items may cause a life-threatening intestinal blockage. Avoid leaving out other foreign objects that might prove tempting to your feline, such as holiday tinsel or lights and toys with small parts.

Look for These Signs

The Pet Poison Helpline lists a variety of symptoms of poisoning to watch for in both cats and dogs. These include common gastrointestinal symptoms (such as vomiting, diarrhea, excessive drooling, and loss of appetite), signs of kidney failure (uremic breath odor, excessive urination, absence of urination), liver failure (jaundice, weakness, tarry stool), and internal bleeding (coughing blood, pale gums, rapid heart rate, lethargy, and collapse). If your cat exhibits any of these signs, contact your veterinarian, emergency veterinary hospital or a pet poisoning hotline at once. 

Remember, even indoor cats need some fresh air as well. If you need some time to remove hazards from your home, consider taking your indoor cat outside for a little exercise, and signing up for a cat insurance policy to protect your furry feline.

Protect your Cats

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1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.

2 Provided all terms of the policy are met. Application is subject to underwriting review and approval. Like most insurance policies, insurance policies issued by IAIC and MetGen contain certain deductibles, co-insurance, exclusions, exceptions, reductions, limitations, and terms for keeping them in force. For costs, complete details of coverage and exclusions, and a listing of approved states, please contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC.