Whether you live on a high floor or just love to visit friends who do, you’ve probably enjoyed the perks of an outdoor patio—a nice breeze, a cool view, and the bird’s-eye fun of being high up.
However, if your pets also want to enjoy a balcony, it’s important to make sure your dog or cat is safe when they’re higher than the ground floor. Unfortunately, accidents can happen, and sometimes pets will leap or fall from high floors. Whenever your animal will join you on a balcony, use extra care.
Supervise, supervise, and supervise.
Never leave your animal unattended on a balcony. Small animals can fall between railings, large animals may jump to catch a bird or because they are just afraid of the height and panic, and many cats can’t resist the urge to climb where it’s not safe. Always keep a close watch on your animal when they’re outside and never leave them alone.
Install some basic safety features.
It only takes a few minutes to add some simple guards against falling. Child safety nets made just for balconies are available at children’s supply stores or online and can be attached to rails quickly and easily. Plastic garden fencing or metal fencing is also an option, although you should check with apartment or condo rules to make sure they’re allowed. You can also visit your local hardware store to get clear acrylic sheets cut to size, then use a small drill to add holes in the corners and attach them to rails with nylon cable ties.
Build a custom solution.
These creative high rise dwellers recently featured in the New York Times have figured out how to enclose their entire patios to keep pets safe, engineering a new urban phenomenon called “catios.” Me-wow!
Some pet owners have started using unique pet collars to act as bumpers that keep pets from squeezing between rails. Puffy ring collars can be stuffed or inflatable—the concept, similar to arm floaties on young swimmers, is to keep slim animals from wiggling through small areas.
Whether you live in a high rise pad, the suburban sprawl, or a Lone Star country kingdom, if you ever have questions about how to keep your pet safe, happy, and healthy, give us a buzz at LazyPaw Animal Hospitals! We are educated, caring animal surgeons who are here to provide a full spectrum of vet services for your furry friend’s every need.