Pets are an important part of many families throughout the world. From dogs and cats to birds, rabbits, hamsters, and more, roughly 66% of American homes have at least one furry or feathered friend. While pets bring us joy and companionship, they can also pose some unique challenges, especially when it comes to plumbing.
How Pets Can Cause Plumbing Problems
As much as we love our pets, they can sometimes be the cause of plumbing issues in our homes. Some common ways that pets can damage plumbing include:
- Chewing through pipes or hoses. Many pets, especially puppies and kittens, have a tendency to chew on things. Unfortunately, this can include your pipes and hoses, causing leaks or even bursts.
- Digging in the yard. Dogs are known for their love of digging, and this can be a major problem when it comes to your plumbing. If they dig too close to underground pipes or sprinkler systems, they can cause damage that may not be immediately noticeable.
- Flushing objects down the toilet. Cats and even some dogs have been known to flush objects down the toilet, causing clogs and potentially damaging your plumbing system.
- Drinking from toilet bowls. While it may seem harmless, pets drinking from the toilet can actually cause major issues with your plumbing. Their hair or fur can get caught in the pipes, leading to clogs and backups.
Pet-Proof your Plumbing
Here are some pet-proof your plumbing tips on how to protect your plumbing and avoid costly repairs:
Keep an Eye on Your Pets
One of the best ways to pet-proof your plumbing is to keep a close eye on them. If you notice your pet chewing or digging in areas where there are pipes, redirect their attention to a more appropriate toy or activity.
Secure Exposed Pipes and Hoses
To pet-proof your plumbing, think about shielding exposed pipes or hoses with covers or enclosures. This proactive step safeguards them not only from your pets but also from various potential hazards.
Block Off Access to Hazardous Areas
If you have a basement, crawl space, or other areas where your plumbing is located, make sure to block off access for your pets. This can help prevent them from causing damage or getting into dangerous situations.
Keep Toilet Lids Closed
For the safety of your pet and your plumbing, it’s important to prevent your pet from drinking toilet water or falling into the toilet. Toilet water can contain harmful bacteria and parasites, so it’s important to keep your pet away from it. You can also install a child-proof toilet lock to make it more difficult for your pet to open the lid.
Make Water Accessible at All Times
Pets are more likely to drink toilet water if they don’t have access to fresh, clean water at all times. Make sure your pet always has a full water bowl in a convenient location. You may also want to consider getting a pet fountain, which can help to keep your pet’s water fresh and flowing.
Don’t Flush Cat Litter
When it comes to protecting pipes from pets, this is one of the most important things you can do. Even if the cat litter packaging says it’s flushable, it’s best to avoid flushing it down the toilet. Cat litter can expand and clump in pipes, causing clogs. Instead, dispose of cat litter in a sealed bag in the trash.
Use Drain Stoppers
Ensure you use drain stoppers to pet-proof your plumbing against hair and debris clogs. Regularly cleaning these stoppers is essential to prevent any buildup.
Install Water Balance Valves
Water balance valves help to regulate water temperature, so you don’t have to worry about your pet being burned by hot water or getting too cold from cold water.
Protect Against Hairballs
If you own a cat, you’re aware that hairballs can cause significant issues. To pet-proof your plumbing from hairball-related drain clogs, maintain a regular brushing routine for your cat and administer hairball prevention medication.
Test for Water Pressure and Temperature
It’s a good idea to test your water pressure and temperature regularly to make sure they are safe for your pet. If the water pressure is too high, it can startle or frighten your pet. If the water temperature is too hot, it can burn your pet.
Keep Cleaning Products In Out-of-Reach Places
Cleaning products can be toxic to pets, so it’s important to keep them in a safe place where your pet can’t get to them. You may want to consider using child-proof cabinet locks to keep cleaning products out of reach.
Cover Exposed Pipes
Exposed pipes can be a hazard to pets, as they can chew on them or get caught in them. If you have exposed pipes, you can cover them with pipe insulation or pipe guards.
Don’t Let Your Dog Dig
Dogs love to dig, but digging can damage your plumbing pipes. This can be especially important if your home has a septic tank with a drainfield, where the pipes may be relatively close to the surface and easily damaged. If you have a dog, try to keep them from digging by creating a designated digging area in your yard or by using a fence or kennel to keep them out of certain areas.
Call in the Professionals at Stronghold Plumbing In & Near Lakeland
Despite your best efforts at Pet-Proofing Your Plumbing, accidents can still happen that require the help of a plumber. If you’re having plumbing issues and searching for plumbers near me, don’t choose just any plumbing company. Reach out to the best plumbers in and near Lakeland – Stronghold Plumbing.
As a licensed and insured Florida plumbing company, we offer a full range of plumbing services, from clearing clogs caused by pets to installing, inspecting, and maintaining plumbing fixtures. Contact us today for a free plumbing estimate.
FAQ’s – Pet-Proofing Your Plumbing
Should I worry about my plumbing if I have pets?
Yes, pets can cause damage to your plumbing if you’re not careful. By taking some preventative measures and keeping an eye on your pets, you can avoid costly repairs.
What are some common ways that pets can damage plumbing?
Pets can damage plumbing by digging in areas with pipes, flushing objects down the toilet, and drinking from toilets or other plumbing fixtures.
How do I protect my plumbing from pets?
You can protect your plumbing from pets by keeping an eye on them, securing exposed pipes, blocking off access to hazardous areas, and following the other tips mentioned in this article.
What should I do if my pet has caused damage to my plumbing?
If your pet has caused damage to your plumbing, it’s best to call in a professional plumber to assess the situation and make any necessary repairs. It’s important to address plumbing issues as soon as possible before they worsen or cause further damage.
Should I be concerned about my pet’s safety around plumbing?
Yes, pets can potentially get hurt from certain aspects of your plumbing, such as hot water temperature or hairball clogs. It’s important to take precautions and regularly check your plumbing to ensure it is safe for your pet. Always consult with a veterinarian if you have any concerns about your pet’s safety around plumbing fixtures.