Second-Hand Smoke Is Harmful for Your Pet

August 1, 2019
Second-hand smoke is harmful, regardless of where it comes from. For example, people who would never dream of smoking a cigarette choose to burn wood and its smoke as toxic and carcinogenic as the substances in cigarette smoke.

Many smokers, especially chronic smokers, don’t seem to care what others think about their habit. However, second-hand smoke does harm those around them. On this note, you should also know that a single fireplace operating for an hour and burning 10 pounds of wood would generate 4,300 times more carcinogens than 30 cigarettes.

In any case, let’s concentrate on tobacco smoke. The most addicted smokers either forget or just don’t think their second-hand smoke could harm their loved ones. The same ones who become passive consumers just by being around smokers.

Smoking is a pleasure that generates different perceptions and charges of conscience. Thanks to anti-smoking campaigns there are now many smokers who feel, to a greater or lesser extent, guilty every time they smoke a cigarette. Many of them truly wish they could break their habit for good. Unfortunately, many just can’t do it.

Second-hand smoke harms your dog

Second-hand smoke affects dogs.

Just as second-hand smoke negatively impacts smokers it also harms everyone in their environment. Yes, that includes their pets. Dogs, cats, and birds are the most affected, given they’re the most common house pets.

One of every two dogs who live in a household where there’s an active smoker may end up with some sort of cancer at some point in their life. (At least, that’s what statistics indicate.) They are also 60% more likely to develop asthma, acute rhinitis, and inflammation of the respiratory tract or bronchitis.

The size of a dog’s snout plays a role in this. Breeds with a big one, such as Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds, are particularly susceptible to developing lung cancer. This is due to their ability to absorb more air than other breeds. However, dogs with flatter snouts such as the Boxer and the Bulldog are also at risk. This is because the amount of toxins that reach the lungs is greater than in the other breeds.

Second-hand smoke also harms your cats and birds

Cats have an exhaustive self-grooming routine. Estimates indicate they spend up to two-thirds of each day preening themselves. This, unfortunately, works against their health when they live around smokers.

This is because the animal ends up collecting all the toxins that second-hand smoke leaves left on their fur and skin with their tongue. It’s for this reason that they have up to 70% chance of developing mouth cancer.

Furthermore, birds are the most harmed when in captivity with smokers. These animals have two extra disadvantages when compared to dogs and cats. Their respiratory system is extremely delicate, and they’re confined to such restricting spaces. So, any harmful substance that reaches their area leaves them no choice but to breathe it time and again.

Lung cancer is not the only problem birds that cohabit with tobacco users have to face. There’s also skin cancer and irritated eyes. If you don’t think second-hand smoke harms your pets, then think again.

Preventive measures

A seemingly satisfied dog.

Smoking is harmful, not only to the health of those who do it but to everyone around them. Therefore, it’s also clear that second-hand smoke harms domestic animals.

What can you do to reduce all the negative effects derived from your second-hand smoke? There’s only one efficient and definitive solution: quit smoking. Of course, if you don’t wish to quit, then there are other alternative solutions.

For example, you could reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke per day. Also, don’t smoke indoors, especially not at home, or in any enclosed spaces where there are people nearby.

Smoker categories

A smoker fits into three categories:

  • Primary smoker. This is the one who lights a cigarette and then inhales the smoke into their lungs before expelling it.
  • Passive smoker. The one who breathes the toxic particles of any second-hand smoke in their environment. Toxic particles also end up on their skin and clothes.
  • Third-hand smoker. These don’t come into direct contact with second-hand smoke, but with people or with objects exposed to such toxins. For example, the hands of those who smoke as well as their clothes and furniture, among other things.

So, if you smoke, try not to do so near your domestic animals as you put their health at risk. keep in mind that third hand-smoke also hurts your pet. As you know, cats and dogs constantly lick themselves as well as your hands and by doing so they may be slowly poisoning themselves.

There are even some animal advocates who propose that smokers shouldn’t be allowed to adopt pets.