Moving into a new apartment is an occasion that’s filled with lots of excitement — and a lot of stress. In between buying new furniture and unpacking, if you have a feline in tow you will also have to come up with a comprehensive plan to cat-proof your apartment.
Cat-proofing your apartment is vital for two main reasons. Firstly, it will help protect your cat from any indoor hazards that could compromise its safety. And secondly, it will help prevent your cat from making a mess of your furniture and belongings.
So what then is the best way to ensure your new pad is cat-friendly? We’ve narrowed down 4 expert tips to keep in mind.
Conduct a Plant Audit
Plants are definitely one thing that many cat owners forget can be very cat-unfriendly. While most plants won’t pose a problem to your feline, there are a number of varieties – including some popular household picks – that are toxic to cats and can make them ill.
So what plants should be disposed of? The following plants are just a selection of the ones identified by petMD as being toxic:
- Azaleas and Rhododendrons (Rhododendron sp.)
- Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum sp.)
- English Ivy (Hedera helix)
- Kalanchoe (Kalanchoe sp.)
- Lilies (Lilium sp.)
- Marijuana (Cannabis sativa)
- Spanish thyme (Coleus ampoinicus)
- Tulip and Narcissus bulbs (Tulipa and Narcissus sp.)
- Yew (Taxus sp.)
See a few you own or buy on the regular? That’s why we suggest conducting a plant audit. Go through each and every plant in your house, and make sure they won’t pose a threat to your cat’s health. This includes cut flowers, potted plants, and any shrubs. And while you’re at it, check all of the plants on your balcony as well. Remember – leave no plant unchecked!
Hide Away Your Precious Objects
If there are any objects you hold dear to your heart, you’d best not let your kitty catch sight of them. Cats love a good snoop, so if you’ve got anything shiny or precious, you can bet your cat will be all over it!
In order to save the heartache of seeing your family heirloom or expensive jewels innocently broken by your cat, put them away. While it’s a shame not to be able to display your favorite things, it’s a small sacrifice to make to keep them in one piece. This is definitely a case of “it’s better to be safe than sorry”!
Clip Your Cat’s Claws on the Regular
Clipping your cat’s claws is not only important for their health, but also to protect such items as your furniture, carpets, clothes from getting ruined. Angela Stringfellow from Cat Life Today advises for cat owners to be vigilant with clipping their cat’s claws, particularly as indoor cats’ claws don’t wear down as easily as outdoor cats’ ones.
If you’d like to learn more about why it’s integral trim them, or are looking for some general guidance on the matter, we recommend you take a good read VetStreet’s easy to understand guide, “Why Do I Need to Trim My Cat’s Claws?” You’ll learn that the trouble of clipping your cat claws is well worth it on a number of accounts.
Keep Any Strings and Cords Out of Reach
Strings, cords, and any other dangling objects are a paradise of fun for a cat. They will take any opportunity to claw at, jump on, or get tangled in them. What’s the harm in that?
Well, a lot. Your cat could get wrapped in a cord, and worse still, accidentally strangle itself in one. Therefore, we can’t stress the importance enough of keeping any strings and cords out of reach. That means tying up the cords you use to pull your blinds up and down, extension cords, TV cords, your phone charger, and any and all cords you use to charge your electronics.
As you can see, there are so many different strings and cords around your house – many of which we haven’t even listed. So make sure to do a thorough check through your house of any we missed. But what about cords you aren’t able to keep out of reach from your cat? Don’t worry, there’s a solution! Just make them taste bad by using a cat-safe spray like bitter apple.
Got any other tips for cat-proofing a new apartment? We’d love to hear them in the comments below!