Kittens can be the most precious and adorable members of your household. Their fluffy bodies and endless energy make them impossible to resist and impossible not to love. However, that love can be tested when they destroy your home and possessions with all of their kitten energy. Read on to find out how to save your sanity by kitten-proofing your home.
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KNOW YOUR HOME'S HIDING SPOTS
Kittens are small, curious creatures that are going to explore their new home in depth. Chances are that you will lose your kitten inside the house at least once, so know where to look. Kittens like small, dark places and hide under furniture or inside the washer or dryer. Perform a "kitten check" before leaving the house to make sure that your feline pal is not trapped inside a dresser drawer, closet or under a recliner chair.
SECURE ALL WINDOWS AND DOORS
Ensure that all of the windows and doors in your home latch correctly and stay closed. Window screens should be firmly in place. A kitten could easily escape through an open window or door, which would be especially dangerous you live on the second floor or in a high apartment. The same safety measures should be taken with balconies, decks and high porches.
As previously stated, kittens love to explore and climb. You should move any breakable items being kept on open shelves or bookcases, because your kitten will find them and break them. Exploring every nook and cranny of a large bookcase or living room cabinets is a favorite activity for a tiny cat, so save yourself the trouble and move delicate items elsewhere.
CORRAL CORDS AND CURTAINS
Move any low-hanging electrical cords out of a kitten's reach. This should also be done with any blind cords. If they cannot be tucked out of reach, then consider cord enclosures or covers to keep them safe from chewing. Your feline could easily become tangled in them and cause injury or even choke to death. Curtains should also be pulled up from floor level when a kitten is first brought home to prevent climbing and scratching.
SECURE PLANTS AND FLOWERS
Kittens love to nibble, especially on greenery in the home. Unfortunately, many plants are poisonous to cats and could kill them if they are ingested. Find out which plants are poisonous to your feline friend, and then move them out of your house or to a room where your kitten cannot go.
CLEAN UP STRING AND OTHER THINGS
Kittens love to play and they can entertain themselves with just about anything. However, string, rubber bands, ribbon and twine can all be hazardous. A kitten could chew on any of the items and choke to death. So, as cute as it is to give a kitten a ball of yarn, be sure to put everything away and out of reach once play time is done.
"CHILD-PROOF" CABINETS AND DRAWERS
Some kittens are smart and curious enough to teach themselves how to open doors and drawers. Put child-proof latches and locks to keep them securely closed. This is especially important to keep kittens from licking, chewing or eating dangerous cleaning supplies stored in cabinets or drawers.
KEEP TOILET SEATS DOWN
This is a good habit for every member of your family to form. A kitten could easily fall into the toilet bowl and drown while trying to drink from it. The water in the bowl could also contain cleaning chemicals, so your feline should not be drinking it. This threat is easily eliminated so long as the toilet seat is kept closed at all times.
KEEP MEDICATION IN A SAFE PLACE
Prescription medication or pills of any kind should be stored where a kitten cannot reach them. Start putting bottles in a secure cabinet if you keep them on a kitchen or bathroom counter. Be mindful to pick up any dropped pills so that a kitten does not eat them. Keep in mind that just because the bottles are child-proof does not mean that they are chew-proof to felines.
Next: How to Care for a Pregnant Cat
KEEP KITTENS AWAY FROM OPEN FLAMES
Curiosity certainly will kill the cat if you let your kitten get too close to an open flame. Put a guard around any fireplace in your house, and be careful with lit candles. A kitten is sure to sniff at the flame and singe its whiskers if it gets too close.