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How to cat-proof your home

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Published March 2023

Every cat owner knows cats are curious creatures, so it’s crucial to make sure your home is as safe from any potential hazards. From cat-proof furniture to safety tips, keep your feline friend – and your stuff – safe with this helpful guide.

Watch out for these foods 

Hide away harmful foods from your cat at home. Even a small amount of these could cause problems for your pet. 

  • Grapes and raisins
  • Chocolate
  • Raw eggs and meat
  • Caffeinated drinks
  • Alcohol
  • Onions and garlic
  • Milk and dairy

If you suspect your cat has eaten something toxic, call your vet or Animal Poison Control immediately.

Kid and kitty training

For a happy home, teach kids how to interact with your cat and know when it wants to be left alone. 

  • Show you children how to pet your cat gently – soft strokes with an open hand works wonders for your kitty
  • Watch out for body language – a swishing tail, hissing or turned back ears are signs of distress, but a high tail and soft purring shows your cat is relaxed
  • Help youngsters put food down for your cat – this will not only teach them how to care for their pet, but will also help them build a relationship 
  • Make sure there is a private space for your cat at home when it wants to be left alone – e.g. a cat bed or a separate room.

Remember, it’s always best to supervise cats and children when they’re together.

Safety tips and tricks

Protect your inquisitive kitty from accidents with these smart safety tips.

  • Check washing machines and tumble dryers before each use
  • Hide wires and cords under rugs or behind furniture
  • Create cat-proof blinds by tying up cords and loops
  • Make sure your cat is microchipped
  • Keep medicine and cleaning products in high, locked cupboards

Buy some extra accessories

Grab some additional kit to keep your kitty safe and happy inside (and outside) your home.

  • Scratching post – better to scratch this than your sofa
  • Cat flap – keep it locked at night so they can’t sneak out
  • Reflective quick-release collar – makes them more visible
  • Cat toys – to keep them occupied
  • Cat carrier – for those important vet visits

If you don’t mind a bigger spend, consider buying cat-proof furniture. A microfibre/microsuede sofa or anything made of synthetic polyester, nylon or acrylic won’t get damaged by sharp claws.

Don’t forget your garden

Knowing how to cat-proof your house is one thing, but it’s just as important to focus on the outside, too. Be sure to check your garden for plants that are toxic to cats.

  • Lilies
  • Azaleas and Rhododendrons
  • Daffodils
  • Foxgloves
  • Hydrangeas
  • Spring bulbs
  • Amaryllis
  • Autumn Crocus
  • Chrysanthemum

For a full list of plants that are toxic for your cat at home, check the Cats Protection website.

Protect yourself from unexpected vet bills, should your cat come to any harm, with Sainsbury’s Bank Pet Insurance, provided by Pinnacle Insurance plc. Explore our cat insurance policies today.

This Money Talk post aims to be informative and engaging. Though it may include tips and information, it does not constitute advice and should not be used as a basis for any financial decisions. Sainsbury's Bank accepts no responsibility for the opinions and views of external contributors and the content of external websites included within this post. Some links may take you to another Sainsbury's Bank page. All information in this post was correct at date of publication.