Did you know that smoking not only poses a risk to your health? Have you ever wondered, for example, if your pets are also at risk from your tobacco smoke addiction?
It is important that you know that when you are a smoker, the health risks do not end only in you, but that this applies to your entire surrounding environment, which includes your pets.
Recently, scientists from the University of Glasgow (Scotland) showed in a study that pets that live in homes where someone smokes have a higher risk of poor health. Another result records that animals, especially cats and dogs, have a higher risk of cell damage, some types of cancer and weight gain.
The greatest risk is suffered by cats, the study indicates, due to its high level of self-hygiene, whereby they absorb more toxins from the environment. They ensure that the risk is reduced when owners smoke on terraces or patios, by reducing the amount of smoke to which pets were exposed.
According to experts, dogs and cats would be in a more dangerous situation even than children, because pets are less tall and are more likely to ingest third-hand smoke, that is, tobacco chemicals present in carpets and other surfaces.
What happens is that the respiratory system of animals is very similar to ours, so it is not strange that tobacco smoke affects them indirectly. Above all, because cigarette smoke contains about 4.7 thousand harmful substances, including nicotine and carbon monoxide, which are highly harmful to the body that inhales them.
You should also know that, if you usually smoke inside your home, that the air in that environment can contain triple the amount of nicotine and carbon monoxide, and up to 50 times more carcinogenic substances than the tobacco smoke inhaled by the smoker himself .
Learn how smoking affects animals
Those with the longest snout are more likely to smoke snuff from lung and nasal cancer. This happens because the substances penetrate and accumulate in the nasal mucosa more easily. Because irritations are one of the most common problems in pets of smokers, dogs can have conjunctivitis, itchy eyes and even cough, nausea, loss of appetite, bronchitis, asthma and cardiovascular disorders.
In the case of cats as mentioned above in this article, it is scientifically proven through a study conducted by the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Tuft (United States) that the risk of felines suffering from tumors is multiplied by five, especially in the case of lymphomas and cancer in the mouth, specifically squamous cell. This occurs because the cancer cells of tobacco smoke, which is floating in the air, is impregnated to the fur of the cats and is attached to it. The cat when grooming, action in which it invests almost 80% of its time, licks them, contaminating the oral mucosa and producing at the same time the serious illness. One of the measures to avoid these diseases is to bathe the cat a couple of times a month.
These animals are the most vulnerable to tobacco smoke. They are especially sensitive for their respiratory system, since they have air sacs distributed throughout their body in addition to their lungs. Birds have a high probability of developing lung cancer or pneumonia due to exposure to tobacco smoke, in fact, depending on their exposure they may even die.
These animals as passive smokers can develop heart problems.
There are cases in which these animals have developed serious problems of eye irritation, tremors or cardiac abnormalities.
Another aspect that can affect animals related to tobacco and beyond smoke is nicotine poisoning. This can happen if the animal ingests a tobacco or a piece of it, if it drinks water contaminated by a cigarette or if it consumes some product to quit smoking like a patch or a gum.
Most pet owners often do not think about the impact that smoking could have on them. It is important that you know that they could be facing nicotine poisoning symptoms that include drooling, seizures, pupil contraction, vomiting, diarrhea and other heart problems along with digestion failures.
The most advisable, in addition to deciding to quit smoking is to do so in a private area where family and pets do not have continuous access.