Cats have become the most popular pets in the United States, surpassing dogs in a big way. While there are more homes that have dogs, households that have cats own an average of 2.1 felines compared to an average of 1.6 for dogs, giving cats the upper “paw”. Cats make excellent pets for a number of reasons: they’re happy living indoors, clean themselves regularly, use a litter box without training, hunt pests and do very well with small children. However, that doesn’t mean cats are trouble free.
One risk is electrocution from chewing on cords, the single most common type of electrical injury in household pets, according to petMD.com. Cats chew on cords for several reasons like poor diet, dental health problems or just plain boredom. Regardless of the reason, Applewood Plumbing Heating & Electric (www.ApplewoodFixIt.com) has a few tips to help keep your cats safe.
1. Wrap exposed wires in rubber covers. These can be purchased at most stores that sell electrical and home repair supplies. An electrician from Applewood can also help you install rubber covers. Placing exposed wires inside PVC tubing is also an option.
2. Provide your cat with additional enrichment. This will play a big role in discouraging them from chewing inappropriate items. You can do this by addressing the cat’s sensory needs: smell, taste, texture and sound. Replace their desire to chew on rubber cords by giving them something alternative to chew on, such as rubber chew toys.
3. Play with your cat more. Increasing your daily interaction with your cat can help to tire your cat out both physically and mentally. Interactive food toys, where your cat has to actively hunt for food within the toy, is an excellent tool to engage your cat’s mind and body and their natural instincts.
4. Spray cords with bitter apple spray. Putting a little bitter apple spray, hot sauce or even some sort of citrus scent on electrical cords may help deter your cat from chewing on them.
5. Take your cat to the vet for a check-up. Your vet can assess your cat’s dental health and examine his or her diet to ensure your cat is getting the right nutrition. Sometimes, simply improving the overall health of your cat is enough to keep him or her from chewing on cords or other bad behavior.