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Protecting Vulnerable Pets

How to keep birds safe in a household already occupied by cats and dogs.
Petkeeping Television, January 2011

It's possible to maintain a harmonious multiple-pet household -- even when your animals are natural enemies in the wild. To accomplish this, petkeepers must ensure the safety of the vulnerable pet.

Large birds don't look very helpless, with their intimidating size and sharp beaks, but they are not immune to injury. The bacteria on a cat's claws can cause a nasty infection on the sensitive skin around a bird's beak, feet, and eyes, for example -- just one scratch could lead to disaster. And there's no question that a cat or dog will kill and eat a small bird if it has the opportunity.

To avoid an incident, make sure your birdcage and stand are strong, sturdy, and unable to be knocked down -- it's likely that your cat will try to jump on top of it. Choose a cage with bars close enough together that a cat's paws will not fit through the openings.

Your bird, no doubt, will continue to fascinate your dog or cat, but eventually all your pets will know they are safe, and peace will reign.