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Pets can be wonderful additions to your family. However, if you plan on adopting a cat, dog or other pet, you'll need to take steps to make your house safe.

Just like infants and small children, pets can get into things around your home and become seriously injured. Before you pick up a new kitten or puppy, follow these tips to pet-proof your home.

Keep Plants Out Of Reach

Plants can brighten up a room, but they can also be deadly to your pet if ingested. Lilies, oleander, castor bean, azaleas, tulips and English ivies are especially dangerous for pets.

Keep your plants off of the ground and window sills and out of your dog's reach. If you have a cat, you will likely need to hang plants even higher up to keep them out of their way.

Use Cord Organizers

Don't let wayward cords pose a threat to your pet. Keep your little buddy as safe as possible with cord organizers.

This method of organization will reduce the odds of your pet tripping and getting tangled up in cords. Some organizers fully cover cords so your pet won't have the chance to gnaw away at a potentially deadly cord.


Put Away Snacks & Candy

Food and gum containing chocolate and xylitol should be kept in a space dogs and cats can't access. Though dogs' stomachs seem to be able to process just about anything, chocolate and xylitol often prove toxic.

Coffee grounds, cigarettes and drinks with alcohol also poison dogs and cats. Put these items in the uppermost cabinets that your pet can't reach.


Keep Chemicals & Cleaners In A Locked Cabinet

Chemicals like pesticides, mouse poison, antifreeze and even fabric softener sheets should be placed in a locked cabinet above floor level. Put mothballs, potpourri, cleaners and medications in such a cabinet as well.

This way, you won't have to worry about your dog or cat chowing down on these poisonous items and requiring an emergency treatment from the vet.


Use Childproof Latches

Childproof latches don't just work on kids. Apply them to cabinets you don't want your pet to access to keep them from prying the door open and chowing down on whatever is inside.


Cover Your Trash Cans

If your home doesn't have trash cans with covers, buy some with snap down or heavy covers. Ideally, you will place these trash cans within latched cabinets. Garbage can be extremely dangerous for pets to get into, so it's best to not risk it.


Be Mindful Of Your Washer & Dryer

You can never be too careful when it comes to kittens and puppies. Take one extra look inside your dryer and washer to ensure your precious kitty or puppy hasn't jumped inside before you turn it on. Pets love to curl up in piles of warm clothes, and this can be incredibly dangerous.


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