4 Steps to Keep Your Kittens Safe During Home Restoration
Home restoration is not always kitten-friendly. Chemical fumes, sharp objects, construction noises: none of them makes up an ideal living situation for neither you nor your pets. Animals feel stressed every time their environment shifts or changes just like humans. To prevent any behavioral problems, it is wise to minimize any stresses whenever possible.
If you have kittens, the challenge intensifies ten-fold. Younger cats are less trained and often, much more curious. They are also more likely to chew on electric cables or fall into an open toilet bowl and (possible to new-born kittens) drown. During the restoration process, keeping your kittens safe can be a real test to any pet owner’s patience and gumption!
Luckily there are steps you can take to keep your fuzzy companions from hurting themselves or stressing out:
1. Designate a “safe” room
Pick a room as far away from the construction as possible. Place a sign that says “DO NOT ENTER” on the door and inform constructors upon their arrival. Move your cats to the room several days before the construction date so they have a chance to acclimate to the new environment.
Indicate that this will be their new home by having their feeding bowl and litter box there. Include any toys and pillows that your pets often use. To help them get used to the room, start feeding and playing with them inside the room. It might be wise to add an extra litter box and water bowl, depending on how often you can check up on them.
To help drown out the noise, you may also wish to place a white-noise device inside the room.
2. Keep your normal routine
Pets are sensitive towards their owners’ behavioral and emotional changes. If you are stressed, so will be your pets. During construction, remember to take care of yourself so you can take care of your cats.
Try to keep the same schedule in terms of feeding and play time. If you often watch the evening news with your kitten in your lap, feel free to do so. Regular routine brings comfort to your pets. During construction, don’t forget to check in and spend time with them.
Most kittens are instantly reassured at their owner’s presence during stressful period. Grab a ball of twine or their favorite chew toy and spend some quality time with your furry friends!
3. Proof your home
Kittens are more accident-prone than adult cats. Their small size means they can easily stumble into your sink or tub without able to get out. They also chew on almost anything in sight. To keep them safe, and prevent damage to your home, remember to:
- Get rid of domestic plants that are poisonous to cats, such as: amaryllis, narcissus, poinsettia, holly, philodendron, azalea, rhododendron, daffodil, tobacco, tulip, clematis, morning glory, etc. You can contact a local veterinarian for a full list.
- Store chemicals in a locked cabinet inaccessible to kittens. Make sure the caps are on tight to prevent spilling. You may want to provide more ventilation to the safe room by opening/cracking the window, but remember to check that the screens are secured (and don’t have tears that can scratch your kittens). An oscillating fan is a nifty solution, as long as it is placed out of reach.
- Put the toilet seat down. Don’t leave a tub or sink full of water with your kittens walking around. It’s as simple as that.
- Keep cords and cables neatly stowed away. Kittens can get tangled in wires or get electrocuted chewing on cables. Tips: coat your cables with hot sauce and your kittens will learn not to chew on them again.
4. Allow for re-adjustment
After the restoration process is finished, do not force your kittens or cats out of their new-found comfort zone. Allow them to explore the house on their own terms, but keep the little box and food bowl inside the room for a couple more days. Be extra vigilant in cleaning up after workers. Clean up any spills and sharp objects. Like us, pets are sensitive and a transition can take time. Eventually your pets will re-adjust to the familiarity of their surrounding and resume normal activities.
Home restoration or remodeling can pose particular challenges to pet owners, but planning ahead and taking extra steps in safety can make a world of difference to the health of your pets. At 911 Restoration of Gilbert we are sensitive to the needs of you and your pets. Don’t hesitate to communicate your concerns or questions with the crew!
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