Cleaning Chemicals and Cats – What Do You Use or Not Use and Why?

| August 29, 2014 | 7 Comments

Caymus in Petstages Cuddle Coil Cleaning HimselfWe all know how diligently our kitties clean themselves.Ā  As a result, I am always cognizant of the products I use because no doubt, their fur can pick up the residue while they’re walking from one room to another.Ā  And then when they sit down to bathe themselves, they are licking off that residue and ingesting it.

A reader wrote me the other day asking, “As far as cleaning, I’m wondering, do you worry about using spray chemicals to clean with? I’m worried if my kitten will lick the floor or something and get sick. Or is that not really a concern I should worry about? Do cats get allergies? Should I worry about dusting more often than normal or something? Am I over-thinking this?”

And I realized that it’s not something we have really discussed here, so I thought it might be a good topic for discussion.

This article helps you find a household cleaner that is safe for you AND your pets.

What products do you use to clean with?Ā  What do you use or not use because of your kitties and why?

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Category: Health Care

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About the Author ()

Hi, Iā€™m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,

Comments (7)

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  1. Teresa Reid says:

    Yes, it is a big concern to me as well. I use a steam mop on the hardwoods(sealed) and kitchen (ceramic) floors. Use a microfiber cloth for dusting that does great. Used to use chemicals 20 years ago, but worried that they were toxic as all my 10 cats succumbed to either kidney disease or cancer except for two (Bobbie my manx had a heart attack and Tony, my sweet orange and white rescue had a renal embolus). With my new girls, have been overly careful to provide them with the safest environment I know how and appreciate any new information about new products that are safe for cats. Know that Lysol is extremely toxic and even fatal to cats, so never used that here.

  2. Patti Johnson says:

    What a great post, Jenny! I am very interested to read what others post about, too!

    Me? I just never clean…. lol (just kidding) šŸ™‚

    I use non-toxic types of cleansers (baking soda, water and/or vinegar, as needed) to scrub my bare floors (a chore I hate to do!) and sinks and counter tops. We are very fortunate that Miss Pink Sugarbelle doesn’t get on my kitchen countertops. There’s really just no room for her there and she’s not much of a jumper in the kitchen (don’t really know why as she loves to hang out there when I’m cooking and fiddling around with schtuff). šŸ™‚

    However, she lurves to get onto the bathroom counter top and into the bathroom sink a lot. So far, no problems with what I use to clean with….

    We keep the toilet lid down so there’s no chance of her getting into THAT! I scrub the outside of the toilet with my baking soda, water & vinegar. However, the inside of the toilet is cleansed with chemicals using our Clorox Toilet Wand. I’m always very careful to make sure any spills or splashes are wiped up and cleaned off so she’s not exposed to anything toxic.

    So far so good. šŸ™‚

    Big hugs!

    Patti & Pink Sugar šŸ™‚

  3. Patricia McDermott says:

    i always look to see the non toxic labels. there is stuff in places that have an organic section where you can get cleaners that are very non toxic to people or animals. and i was told that you can use bleach to clean as long as you rinse. the vinegar and baking soda is great too, i love using vinegar on my windows and baking soda has an abrasive quality and it’s a stain fighter. another thing i do when i’m cleaning is make sure my cats are somewhere else so that whatever i’m cleaning can get good and dry. for some reason, i have no idea why.. if i get the mop out, one of my cats wants to be in on the action and walk on the wet floor.

  4. GeoValRo says:

    Yes, very worthy post on the importance of avoiding toxic cleansers! I use mostly vinegar and water solutions, but I do use a bleach spray for the kitchen sink and toilets. I just don’t feel that the vinegar does a thorough job there. I try to keep the cats away from the area when I do these chores, but one of my kitties LOVES the smell of bleach. The vet said not to worry as long as I rinse thoroughly after usage. I’d prefer to use something else but have not found natural substitutes to be as effective. Also, I understand that essential oils are highly toxic to cats as well, and they are high on the ingredients list in many green cleaners. Please suggest bleach alternatives if you have any.

  5. JennR says:

    I use Clorox Hard Surface cleaner since it says it’s safe for children and pets. I also use Arm & Hammer Essentials plant based cleaners. They discontinued this line a few years ago but I have been lucky enough to still get the refills off of Amazon.com. Sadly, I am no longer able to get the multi-purpose cleaner. I’m hoping to be able to find another “green” plant based cleaner to use.

  6. DeidreC says:

    I use a few things that are not readily available in the grocery store. One multipurpose cleaner I use is made in Italy. It’s a very watery/milky cleaner that doesn’t make much suds, but is a powerhouse of a degreaser and cleaner. It cleans everything from floors to stoves and it works better than anything that I’ve ever used. It’s very safe and you use just a splash in a pail of water or a spritz on a cloth. You can buy it on Amazon, but I get it locally (NYC). It’s called Sgrassatore. The company also makes a very effective but gentle wood floor cleaner. I also use a few products made by Stanley/Fuller, for the bathroom and kitchen. As a mom, I’ve always used products that are safe and effective. I am a huge fan of Clorox bleach used sparingly, as it works and is a great disinfectant.

  7. Dena says:

    Hi Jenny!
    I’m the one who wrote to you with the question šŸ™‚ Thank you so much for your help and for posting it, I enjoyed reviewing everyone’s helpful tips! After lots of research, I decided to buy a steam cleaner for the home. I got a good deal and it cleans just about everything with steam. They say it’s what hospitals use to sanitize because chemicals can be problematic for patients. It kills 99.9% of germs, bacteria, viruses, mold, mildew, fungus, etc! And all with the power of water – amazing šŸ™‚ I was stuck on vinegar and baking soda but never knew if it was killing everything so I used some heavy duty cleaner every once in awhile too. I just feel scared to use those around a little bitty kitty so I think the steam cleaner will ease my worries about sanitization without chemicals. Thought I’d share in case it gave anyone else out there an idea!

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