Archy Davidson shared with Healthy Lombard that according to the NHS 1, over 80% of second-hand smoke is odorless and invisible, so regardless of how careful you think you’re being, you could still be putting your friends, family, and pets at risk of the detrimental effects it can cause. It doesn’t matter if you have all the windows and doors open, the residue from the smoke will still settle on the surfaces in your home if you are smoking inside. Pets are members of your family who need protection from potential harm just like children do, so it’s essential to consider them when you choose to light up.
Smoking Around Pets – What Harm Can It Do?
In humans, smoking and exposure to second-hand smoke can lead to conditions including cancer, bronchitis, pneumonia, and meningitis, and various others.
Pets can also develop cancer, respiratory problems, allergies, and numerous other conditions from being exposed to smoke. This can occur from:
Inhaling second-hand smoke – this has the same harmful effects on pets as it does on humans.
Grooming or licking fur that contains chemicals from being in contact with cigarette smoke. This is particularly common in cats.
Eating nicotine patches/e-liquid/gum – if you’re trying to quit and using these methods to help you do so, make sure to keep them out of reach of your pets because they are highly sensitive to nicotine.
Eating cigar/cigarette butts – animals are curious, and there’s a chance that they could eat discarded cigarette butts when left unattended, especially if you smoke inside and leave ashtrays within their reach. This is very harmful because cigarette butts contain high levels of nicotine, tar, and various other toxins.
Drinking contaminated water – water is essential to all life, and your pets need fresh, clean water available at all times. Cigarette smoke, ash, and butts can contaminate your animal’s water supply, which can lead to serious health problems
Pets and Second-Hand Smoke
According to the American Cancer Society 2, there are two types of second-hand smoke:
- Mainstream: the smoke that the person smoking exhales
- Sidestream: the smoke continuously coming from the lit end of a cigarette, cigar, pipe, or hookah. This type of smoke has more carcinogens (cancer-causing agents) and smaller particles than mainstream smoke.This means sidestream smoke is both more harmful and more able to travel into the lungs, bloodstream, and body ease.
You probably know how harmful smoking is to your health, and that it also endangers the health of those around you. Whenever you smoke, the second-hand smoke that you exhale, and the emissions from your lit cigarette, are inhaled by the people and animals surrounding you – especially when you choose to smoke inside. These people and pets are unwillingly subject to the dangers of smoking by inhaling toxins in the air they breathe.
Therefore, if you must smoke, make sure to do it outside and away from other people and animals.