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Your Plumbing and Pets

If you are considering bringing a furry friend into your home, you are likely to have given some thought to protecting your flooring, furniture and other belongings. What you may not have considered is your plumbing. It is often overlooked, but pets can create a number of issues for plumbing systems if you don’t take care. From pet hair clogging drains to problems inappropriately disposing of kitty litter, there are a few tips to keep your plumbing system in tip top shape when you have a pet. Cover Your Drains and Consider Toilet Safety: Any drain in your home that could possibly be accessed by your pet needs to have a strainer, stopper or screen fitted. There are a number of reasons for this precaution; it can keep pet oils and hair from being washed down your drain, and it can also prevent smaller pets from getting stuck. To minimize pet hair and dander in your drains, you should try to limit the frequency you wash your pet indoors. You should also ensure that your pet has ready access to clean, fresh water and cannot gain access to the toilet bowl. Consider Proper Pet Waste Disposal: Whether you are toilet training a new puppy or have a new cat complete with litter tray, you need to give some careful thought to how you will dispose of its waste. Many pet owners are tempted to use their toilet for pet waste, but this is not a good idea. Your toilet is designed for the disposal of human waste. Puppy pads, litter, and other pet waste should never be flushed down the toilet as it can cause a blockage. If you are concerned about unpleasant smells, set up a garbage can outdoors that can be easily reached in the event of a pet accident. Don’t Leave Pipes Exposed: Whether you have pipes inside or outside of your home, if your pet can gain access, it is likely to find any weakness in an exposed pipe. This could mean that they cause scratching or chewing damage that could compromise the pipe structure, making it vulnerable to leaks. Any pipes around your home should be covered up or hidden in another way. Additionally, you should watch your pet closely outdoors. There are a number of domestic animals that enjoy digging, and it is amazing how deep they can burrow into your yard. Your pet could very easily come into contact with plumbing lines if they are left unattended for too long. If your pet does start to dig down towards your water lines or drains outside, ensure that you cover them up. Establish a Regular Plumbing Maintenance Schedule: Even the most diligent of pet owner can still have plumbing issues caused by their furry pals. Fortunately, you can mitigate this with regular plumbing maintenance. If you already have underlying plumbing issues such as clogged drains, they will only be exacerbated by having pets in the home. It is a good idea to establish a schedule of regular plumbing maintenance to prevent any minor issues developing into major problems. By Giovanni Longo President Flood Brothers Plumbing Giovanni Longo is a 3rd generation master plumber who has been practicing his craft and trade in the greater Los Angeles area for well over a decade and a half. A plumbing and hydraulics-engineering innovator, Giovanni’s particular world-class expertise focuses on dealing with challenging sewer system designs as well as resolving complex commercial and residential draining issues. As a certified Flood Mitigation expert, he is also well versed in a wide variety of water damage and remediation solution.