You baby-proof your home before you have kids, and when you adopt a pet, you must go through a similar process. With kids, you invest in outlet protectors and baby monitors. With cats, however, you need to anticipate even riskier behavior.
Unlike babies, cats come with the risk of high-rise syndrome, or “the phenomenon of cats falling from two stories or higher.” Consequences of these falls can be quite serious, ranging from a broken jaw to internal injuries. However, 90 percent of cats that receive immediate medical care survive their fall.
To prevent these falls from happening, you should always open your window from the top, rather than the bottom. You should also ensure that the opening in any sliding glass doors or windows are smaller than the cat’s head. You could also consider enclosing your balcony in chicken wire, so that you and your furry friend can enjoy it without worry.
Leather furniture and cat claws don’t always get along. Rather than declawing your cat, learn to deter them from expensive furniture. Do this by placing a scratching post near furniture, and try using a No-Scratch spray on the furniture. If all else fails, trim your cat’s nails.
One last word of advice on creating a cat-friendly apartment is the litter box. Be sure to give each of your cats their own boxes, plus one extra for good measure. Change out your cat’s litter at least once every day, and fully rinse the box once a week with baking soda or an unscented soap. For more information on making sure your home is ready for your pet, see this infographic on bringing home a dog for the first time.