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Pet proof your home in a snap

Before you head out for a game of fetch, try these tricks to create a safe environment for Rover, Fido, and every other pet member of your family.

Woman with pet rabbit

Whether it's a dog, cat, bird, or even a guinea pig, keeping a new pet safe in your house can take a backseat to all the excitement of bringing them home. But loving a new addition to your family means more than giving them food and plenty of attention. As animal ownership increases — according to the Insurance Information Institute 68 percent of U.S. households now own pets — pet safety is an even bigger priority for more of us. Try these tips to get started.

Focus on living space first

Where will your new pet spend the most time? Probably in the same rooms you are in. Take a look at everything from a pet's perspective: For example, non-threatening household items — air fresheners, glassware, houseplants, and game board pieces — can pose pet safety risks. Keep storage closed with childproof cabinet locks and check that plants are safe for cats, dogs, and any other animals that might have freedom to roam.

Do a bathroom check

Keep toilet bowls securely latched to protect birds, dogs, cats, and other animals from drowning or potential poisoning. And limit the cleaning or beauty products that you keep unsecured under the sink or on your vanity; they can be harmful if ingested.

Scan the kitchen

Cats and birds can easily get to food even on the uppermost shelves, so watch for choking hazards. Seal open snack bags in storage containers, make sure lids shut securely, and close cabinet doors to prevent unwanted rummaging. (Install childproof cabinet locks as needed.) In addition, try to keep counters and sinks free of dirty dishes or food, which can also attract pets.

Check personal spaces

Bedroom, office, or laundry room shouldn't be overlooked. Declutter any clothing, shoes, or accessories that you store outside of a closet. Do a daily check-in to limit the number of trinkets and laundry items that are lying around — they present choking or intestinal hazards.

Learn what your pet needs

Part of being a pet owner is anticipating what run-ins your dog, cat, or other animal might have with things in your home. And those hazards might change from season to season — such as the need to cat-proof a Christmas tree. Minimize the downsides as you can, with protection for furniture, rugs, and more. If you minimize damage, you'll minimize repair and keep your home or rental in better shape, too.

The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with State Farm® (including State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates). While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. State Farm is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.

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