Paws, For Thought: You, And Your Pet, Smoke Free Together!  

Published at 29 April, 2022 12:07.

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We are often aware of how second and third hand smoke affects people, but did you know that being exposed to smoke in the home effects our pets too? Research has shown that our pets can be exposed to a significant amount of smoke when living in a smoker`s home and will often suffer from the same problems as we do such as breathing difficulties and even asthma, skin allergies and eye problems. Cats are particular at risk as they groom themselves and digest the smoke particles and toxins that have settled in their coats, which can lead to mouth cancer. Our feathered friends also suffer the effects of passive smoking as they have very sensitive respiratory tract`s and they also groom their feathers. Even if you smoke with the doors or windows open, the smoke still circulates around the home and settles in house dust, carpets, rug`s and other soft furnishing`s.  Dog`s noses are particularly sensitive and act as big air filters. Long nosed dogs are particularly at risk of nose cancer and shorter nosed dogs are at more risk of lung cancer.  Fish are also at risk as nicotine dissolves easily in water and is toxic to them.

If your health is on the top of your list of reasons why you want to quit smoking why not have your pet`s health on the top of your list too.  This will be another motivation to start your quit attempt and will also help you stay smoke free. Why not spring clean your house with pet friendly cleaning products, starting with your pets bedding and move on to the rest of the home including the carpets and soft furnishings and curtains where there are toxins, residue`s and deep, rooted smells from tobacco smoke. This new freshness in the home will help you keep motivated not to smoke. Why not treat your pet to some special pet grooming products leaving him smelling sweet and smoke free! You`ll want him to smell like this all the time from now on!  If you smoke in your car then de tox it by giving it a valet and treat yourself to a fabulously smelling air freshener. 

If you smoke outside, then your furry friends are at risk from discarded cigarette butts in the garden as these contain nicotine, heavy metals and toxins and can be accidentally eaten by your pet. Why not give your outside space a spring makeover too? It does not have to be expensive or time consuming. Just small changes can make a real difference to how you view your space and what your space is used for. Removing all ashtrays and old cigarette butts is a start. Think how you might like to use your outside space and create a space that is yours to enjoy being in that does not involve the daily ritual and bind of going out for a cigarette.  Make your outside space a smoke free zone that is inviting, stimulating and a positive environment for you to be in. Changing, your space in small ways often changes perspective in bigger ways!

As your health starts to improve from the day you stop smoking and your energy levels increase and breathing becomes easier, then your dog will benefit from this too. You`ll have extra energy to throw the ball in your new smoke free garden, or go on more walks with your dog. This will also help you keep busy, and the fresh air and exercise will help with any withdrawal symptoms too. 

It's worth remembering that pets are sensitive and at risk from nicotine in any form so if you are using NRT (nicotine replacement products) or electronic devices, be mindful of where and how you use them and how you discard your products, so your pets are not at risk. Some of the signs of nicotine poisoning in pets can be vomiting, being lethargic, unsteady, shaking, a fast heart rate, drooling and seizures and your vet should be consulted

Our pets are important family member`s and we can protect their future health and well being as well as our own by being smoke free together!