Household mold poses a particularly serious health risk to cats. Black mold can be fatal to felines.
In 2007, the cat owner community was shocked when two cats died following a routine dental procedure. Black mold was later discovered in the home where the cats lived. Later, it was revealed that the home had experienced water damage that had never been properly remedied.
Cats are extra sensitive to airborne mold contamination. Unfortunately, cats can’t speak – so it can be difficult to tell when your car is feeling the effects of mold contamination.
With that in mind, we’re going to explain everything you need to know about protecting your cat from mold.
Watch for Symptoms
Your cat can’t speak to you. However, you can still watch your cat for symptoms of mold contamination. Cats are quite sensitive to the effects of airborne mold contamination. In many cases, you’ll notice the symptoms in your cat before you notice them in a larger dog or a child. Watch for symptoms like:
- Your cat may soundlessly vomit
- Excessive coughing
- Labored breathing
- Skin rashes
- Intestinal parasites
- Urinary tract infections
- Unusual smells or other mold symptoms in the area of the house where the cat spends the most time
- When exposed to mold over a long period of time, your cat may demonstrate more serious symptoms like cancers, kidney problems, liver problems, and more
Cat owners know how their cats usually behave. If you notice any irregular behavior in your cat’s activity, combined with other symptoms of a mold problem, then your cat may be suffering from airborne mold contamination.
Detoxify your Cat
If your cat has demonstrated any of the above symptoms, then it may be time to detoxify your cat from the toxic mold contamination.
First, you’ll want to remove your cat from the moldy environment – even if that means removing your cat from the house. Take your cat to a friend or family member’s home. Avoid taking familiar items with the cat – like beds, toys, or a cage that may have been exposed to mold.
Then, clean all of the items in the cat’s environment when a cleaning solution of ammonia and distilled water (a 50% mix of both is typically used, and make sure you’re using distilled water with no chlorine). Wash your cat’s toys, dishes, leashes, collars, outfits, beds, and any other items they may have come into contact with.
You may wish to discard the pillows and beds used by your cat. Certain items – like thick, porous blankets – may be impossible to decontaminate. Generally speaking, if the fabric is more than one inch thick, then you should just discard it.
Avoid bringing your cat’s new toys and beds into the moldy environment before you’re 100% sure the room is decontaminated.
Test your Pet
Ideally, your cat’s body will heal itself after the cat is removed from the moldy environment. However, you may wish to give your pet a test.
You can get a mycotoxin test at a veterinarian or at specialized labs. A mycotoxin test will evaluate animal tissue and bodily fluids for the presence of mycotoxins and mold. Your cat’s urine, blood, tissues, and body fluids may be examined during the test.
Put your Cat on a Healthy Diet
Your cat will be able to heal itself more effectively if it’s on a healthy diet. If you feed your cat low-quality food, then their organs will not function as effectively. This can exacerbate the mold contamination problem and prevent your cat from getting better.
During the days or weeks recovering from mold contamination, it’s important that you give your cat healthy food. You can find high-quality cat food brands online or in-store.
Some cat owners even recommend giving your cat natural spring water – not tap water or bottled water – during the recovery phase. Some also give their cats certain fruits or vegetables.
Give your Cat an Ammonia Bath
Giving your cat an ammonia bath sounds like a bad idea – but it’s not! It’s perfectly safe to give your cat an ammonia bath, and it’s one of the best ways to detoxify your cat from a mold contamination problem. However, you have to be careful while doing so.
Ammonia is one of the few compounds that neutralizes the mold spore and the mycotoxin secondary metabolite. However, you need to be careful with ammonia. Ammonia cannot be mixed with chlorinated water (like your tap water), for example. You’ll need to use distilled water.
If you want to give your cat a detoxification bath in ammonia, then you’ll want to use a specific ratio of one teaspoon of ammonia for each gallon of non-chlorinated (i.e. distilled) water.
Contact a Mold Inspection or Mold Remediation Professional
If your cat has a mold contamination problem, then your home probably has a mold contamination problem. Your cat may be the first living being in the house to display symptoms of that problem – but the problem could eventually spread to you.
Make sure you contact a mold inspector or mold remediation team to analyze your home. They can conduct tests to determine whether or not mold is present in your home. You may thank your cat for providing an early warning sign about your mold contamination problem!