How to Handle Pets when Pregnant

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It’s time to take some precaution when handling your pets now that you’re pregnant. Here’s how.

WORDS CINDY LIM

Have a little furry friend at home? Now that you’re expecting, it’s important that you be really careful when handling them. As a good practice, keep good personal hand hygiene. Always wash your hands with soap before and after handling pets and food. Avoid cleaning your pet’s habitat and discuss with your family on how to re-organise its sleeping arrangements if it is currently co-sleeping with you.

Take these steps to further help keep yourself safe during pregnancy:

  • Dogs
  • Do not let your dog jump up on your belly.
  • Make sure your dog is up-to-date with vaccinations. Do this before your baby is born.
  • If you and your dog are especially close, ask your partner or a family member to spend more time with him. Being pregnant will sap up much of your energy.
  • Avoid getting licked on the face or getting bitten by your dog. Always treat scratches and bites immediately. Avoid kissing your dog.
  • Feed your dog only canned or dried commercial pet food. Never give them undercooked or raw meat.



Cats

  • Ask a family member who is not pregnant to clean out the litter box every day.
  • Stay away from stray cats.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after touching cat poop or after gardening.
  • Avoid getting licked on the face or getting bitten by your cat. Always treat scratches and bites immediately. Teach your cat not to scratch.
  • Avoid kissing your cat
  • Feed your cat only canned or dried commercial pet food. Never give them undercooked or raw meat.


Rodents

  • Keep pet rodents in a separate area of your home.
  • Ask family members to care for the pet and clean its cage. Cages should be kept clean and free from any dirty bedding.
  • Keep pet rodents away from your face.
  • Stay away from wild rodents.


Birds

  • Bring your bird to the Vet for a health check
  • Do not expose your pet bird to other birds.
  • Ask a family member to keep the bird cage clean, avoid scattering debris.
  • Do not kiss your pet bird.


Turtles

  • Ask family members to care for the turtle and clean its cage. Cages should be kept clean and free from any dirty bedding.
  • Do not give the turtle baths or clean its cage in the kitchen sink or bathtub. The cage should be cleaned outdoors. Disinfect the cleaning area afterward.
  • Do not allow the turtle to roam freely around the house.
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