Household Pets and Smoking

I don’t usually smoke in the house, so my pets are not exposed to it regularly.

I wondered though, in homes where people smoke indoors, do pets suffer any sort of nictotine withdrawal when their owners quit?

Conversely, do pets ever get lung cancer or other respitory ailments from thier owners’ second-hand smoke? (Has a canary ever keeled over? :wink: )

Pets also have a habit of running up to their owners unexpectedly. How common are cigarette burns in animals?

Do pets ever die from eating butts or unattended packs of cigarettes?

My dog once ate a whole pack of cigarettes, but she threw them right back up.

I smoke pipes in the house. My cats don’t seem to have a problem with it; they don’t like the smoke itself, but will happily sit on my lap when I’m smoking. I try to keep the smoke away from their faces. I also usually only smoke one bowl a day, and have an air filter constantly blowing – my apartment usually does not smell like smoke (per non-smoking friends).

The tobacco I keep in airtight plastic containers, in a high kitchen cabinet, as I know that my cats are very curious and if they had access to it would eat it. Pets have indeed died from eating tobacco – it’s a very toxic substance and is always listed as one of the household poisons one should keep away from pets and children.

I think dogs and cats don’t live long enough to be affected by second-hand smoke. IANAVet or D; just MHO.

When I was younger, we had two cats. In addition, Mom smoked two packs a day, and Dad often had his pipe going.

One of our cats lived until she was 12, when she was hit by a car. The other lived until he was 16, when he was so riddled with arthritis that the kindest thing to do was to put him to sleep.

Nowadays, I enjoy an occasional pipe or cigar in the house, and some of our cats (we have six) simply leave the room while I’m smoking. One or two choose to stick around (maybe they’re enjoying the show on TV as much as I am). But none are exposed to as much ambient smoke as our childhood cats were. Since those two lived long and happily, I’m assuming that Mom and Dad’s smoking didn’t have much of an effect on them.

No cat of ours has ever gone after butts or tobacco or ashes, but I did once have a horse who showed great interest in the pipe tobacco in my pocket. She never got it, but I understand from my Dad, who spent some of his youth on a farm, that the horses on the farm liked chewing tobacco. Mine may have wanted it, but I wasn’t willing to risk her having any.

I had a friend who raised and broke horses for a living. He’d shred cigarettes from his pockets as a treat for the horses. Said it kept them worm-free.

I strongly advocate not letting your pets smoke. Allowing them to handle matches and lighters, what with lacking opposable thumbs, is just a fire waiting to happen.

I’m not sure how cigarettes would affect pets, but sometimes when my cat starts running around and acting crazy, I’ve blown a few puffs of marijuana smoke in her face. It calms her down pretty quickly. I would assume marijuana would be safer for pets than cigarettes since marijuana is not addictive or toxic, but who know? Anyway, it’s just a cat.

I see a lot of owners of asthmatic cats (yes, cats get asthma) that come in reeking of cigarette smoke and the cat also reeking of smoke and the owners just don’t get why the cat keeps having asthma attacks. Judging by the strong cigarette smell on some of these cats I’d bet that the owners were chain smoking in the closed up car on the way to the emergency clinic with their cat in respiratory distress.

I saw an article a few years ago about cats and secondary smoke, I can’t remember for sure where I saw the article, it may have been from Tufts or Cornell University. Anyway, it talked about a link between second hand smoke and sick cats. I’m not sure if there have been any studies done with dogs or birds exposed to second hand smoke. I would imagine that birds could tolerate even less smoke.