Many people think of their pets as children. Whether you have a cat, dog, bird, or lizard it is important to consider the quality of your home air and how it is affecting your pet’s health. Pets are even more susceptible to the dangers of common home air contaminants than humans since they are typically smaller in size and have a more sensitive sense of smell.
Pets can also suffer from allergies and exhibit a number of symptoms when they are having a reaction to an indoor air contaminant. Biological and chemical indoor air pollutants can make your pet very ill and repeated exposure can shorten their life span. Allergens can leave your pet symptomatic when inhaled, ingested, or when they come into contact with your pet’s skin.
A variety of skin, digestive and respiratory symptoms may appear when your pet has been exposed to chemical or biological air pollutants. Take your pet to a licensed veterinarian should you observe any of these symptoms or behaviors: itchy, red, or scabbed skin, constant scratching, runny eyes, ear infections, sneezing, vomiting, diarrhea, paw chewing or swollen paws, or any behavior that is not characteristic of your pet.
What can I do to make sure my home air is healthy for my pets?
#1 Stop using harsh cleaning chemicals and detergents. Not only are the ingredients found in many common household cleaners dangerous to humans when inhaled or through skin contact, they are also extremely hazardous to pets.
#2 Do not smoke in your home. Cigarette smoke is toxic to humans and even more dangerous for your pets. Keeping your home free from all of the deadly chemicals found in second hand cigarette smoke will extend the life span of your furry friends.
#3 Do not use perfumes or scented products. Fragrances contain a number of toxic chemicals that are harmful when inhaled. Animals have extremely sensitive noses and can suffer from allergies and respiratory distress when exposed to chemical fragrances.
#4 Keep your home free of mold and dust. Dust your home frequently and test your home air for mold should you detect a musty odor that is prevalent in a specific area or when your air conditioner is running.
#5 Use natural fragrance-free products to bathe your pets. There are a number of harsh chemicals in pet shampoos and flea control products. Ask your vet about safer ways that you can keep your pet clean and free of fleas without using products with harsh chemical ingredients that can trigger dangerous side effects.