Have you noticed that whenever you clean your bathroom with bleach your cat loves spending time in it? He sniffs around, purrs, and even rolls on the floor in excitement. Does your cat love a clean bathroom or this could be a sign of something else?
Cats are drawn to bleach because it creates the same effect on them like catnip. Scientists believe that bleach contains a chemical that triggers the same effects as pheromones. Bleach is completely safe for a cat to sniff but not slurp.
If you frequently clean your home with bleach, you have witnessed firsthand your feline going crazy over the bleach fumes. They will sniff and roll around the floor as if they are high. It feels like catnip all over again.
But why do cats love the smell of bleach? Is bleach safe for a cat? If this cat and bleach behavior puzzles you, like most pet parents, you are in the right place.
First things first,
Why are cats drawn to bleach?
There is no scientific evidence as to why cats love bleach. But behavioral experts speculate that bleach has the same intoxicating effects as catnip. There is a specific chemical in bleach, and possibly nip, that makes felines go head-over-heels crazy for more.
Whenever you clean your home with bleach or open a bottle of bleach, your cat is bound to come running. If bleach smells strong to you, then you can imagine how high a cat gets by sniffing it.
Now that we know the relationship between cat and bleach, we have to answer another fundamental question.
VIDEO: Cats on Bleach
Is bleach safe for cats?
The simplest answer is, yes. Bleach is safe for cats but there is a catch. It has to be the right kind of bleach to ensure your cat is not in danger.
Bleach bought from stores or supermarkets is safe. It is mild and will not cause any harm to a cat when they sniff it. Also, we always dilute bleach with water before using it which makes it even more basic.
It is okay for your cat to sniff and roll around bleached floors. They are having a time of their life getting high from the chlorine smell. The only time you need to be worried is if you find your feline slurping at a puddle of bleach.
Is bleach safe for cats to drink?
Not at all. Bleach is a chemical that causes harmful side effects if ingested by a cat. The severity of bleach poisoning in cats depends on the type of bleach ingested.
Bleach in its pure form is toxic. Mixing it with water takes away some of its toxicity. But if your cat drinks too much bleach water, it will be detrimental to their health.
Symptoms of bleach poisoning in cats include;
Bleach burns around the mouth (appear as white patches)
Bleach poisoning shares symptoms with other diseases. When your cat shows any of the mentioned symptoms, look around for bleach puddles or an opened bottle of bleach.
Once you suspect your cat has bleach poisoning, administer first aid immediately. This step by step process will help you out.
Step by step process for treating bleach poisoning in cats
1. Call your vet
In the heat of things, it is easy to panic and not know what to do with your cat. Calling your vet at this point will help calm things down. Also, your vet will walk you through the process of finding the symptoms of bleach poisoning in cats.
Find out if your cat drank bleach from the bottle or he slurped away at a puddle that was overlooked during cleaning. If you have a collection of bleach products at home, find out which bottle may have leaked and poisoned your cat.
Also, dab lightly at your cat’s mouth or nose and smell the finger. If it smells of bleach then your cat is possibly suffering from bleach poisoning. In the case of undiluted bleach, the chlorine smell will be too strong on the cat’s mouth, paws, or coat.
3. Dilute the bleach
Stop the corrosive action of the bleach by diluting it with water. If you notice white or yellowish marks around your cat’s mouth and nose, it is signs of bleach corrosion. Wash the cat’s face and paws to dilute the bleach. Wash his coat with plain water as well to remove any traces of bleach.
4. Treat the symptoms
After washing your cat, you have to flush the bleach off his system. Milk and water are good solvents to flush out ingested bleach. If your cat refuses to drink any water or milk, you can try giving them plain chicken cat broth.
5. Get rid of the hazard
Store all bleach products in a safe place away from your pets. Lock the products up if it is the only way to prevent your cat from finding them.
Now you know why cats love bleach so much. While sniffing a bleached surface is safe for a cat, drinking it is not. Administer first aid immediately if your cat ingests bleach and shows symptoms of bleach poisoning. Also, the best preventive measure is storing all bleaching agents away from your cat.
Bleach will only clean pee stains and any germs that may have developed. But you will need a stronger cleaning agent to get rid of the cat smell. This will prevent your cat from peeing on the same spot again.
A cat licking your legs after swimming is because they are drawn to the smell of chlorine. Chlorine is the same chemical in bleach that makes cats to droll and purr in excitement. Swimming pool water is harmless if all your cat does is lick it.
Small amounts of bleach will not kill your cat. It may only cause him to drool, vomit or diarrhea. When you notice these side effects, administer first aid immediately and rush your cat to the vet. This will save the cat if its life is in danger.
A tiny lick of bleach will not be harmful to a cat. Your cat will only show side effects when he drinks a large amount of bleach. When this happens, give the cat some water, milk, or chicken soup to wash off the bleach in his stomach.