As a pet owner, you may expect your fur baby to rummage through the trash, leave traces of their hair throughout the household, and even chew through some household items. What you may not think of is how the plumbing in your home could be impacted by your beloved pet and vise versa. Here are some tips to pet-proof your home’s plumbing.
Invest in a good drain cover or screen
Even if you have a non-shedding dog, hair can still get clogged in the drains just like human hair. Muddy fur clumps are sure to go down the drain while dirty dogs are being bathed. The combination of mud and fur/hair are the perfect recipe to create a clogged drain. To avoid clogged drains, invest in a good drain cover. This will save you money and aggravation down the road.
Hose your dog off outside
We know that Rochester weather does not always allow for this, but whenever possible, it is best to rinse your dog with a hose while you are still outside to remove as much mud, dirt, leaves, branches, etc. to avoid clogged drains. You will still need a good drain protector to prevent fur/hair from going down the drain when bathing your dog, but the worst drain-clogging potential will be avoided by removing mud and grime prior to bath time.
Cover your sump pump and floor drains
Curious pets are at risk for falling into uncovered sump crocks and floor drains. Small animals like rodents, reptiles and even small kittens and puppies could fall into the smallest drains, so make sure these are covered. Uncovered sump crocks, as pictured, are wide enough for dogs, cats, tennis balls, bones, toys, etc. to fall into. If your dog (or cat) is anything like Charlie Blazer, the Pride Plumbing mascot, you know he/she would do nearly anything for their tennis balls and bones. Avoid the risk of your fur baby getting seriously injured, cover your sump crock and floor drains.
Do not flush cat litter down the toilet
Flushing cat litter down the toilet can lead to clogged pipes, even if the packaging claims that the litter is flushable. Most types of cat litter are designed to absorb moisture and the litter can actually expand up to 15 times it original size when immersed in water! In addition to damaging the pipes, flushing litter down the toilet is a public health risk. Cats can spread a disease called toxoplasmosis, which is particularly dangerous for individuals with a compromised autoimmune system. Flushing cat litter down the toilet potentially allows for this disease to enter and contaminate our water supply.
Keep your toilet lid closed
Chemical residue from cleaning products in your toilet bowl can be very harmful for animals to ingest, even in small quantities. Additionally, smaller pets are at risk of falling in the toilet and drowning. Pets such as rodents and reptiles have been known to make their way through the plumbing pipes via the toilet. This leads to major repairs in order to retrieve the exploratory animal. Get into the habit of keeping your toilet lid closed to protect your pets.