Battersea Dogs and Cats Home is asking owners to consider their pets before lighting a cigarette, following the death of a dog due to passive smoking.
Dogs and cats with owners who smoke are twice as likely to develop some types of cancers as those with owners who don’t. Smoking can also make symptoms worse in pets already suffering from illnesses, such as asthma and bronchitis.
Battersea veterinary director Shaun Opperman said: “We always advise owners not to smoke around their pets because they are equally susceptible to the disease risk, while generally being unable to escape it.
“Cats are also at risk from grooming the toxins contained in tobacco smoke off of their fur, which can cause oral cancers. In addition, we see frequent cases of cats with feline asthma, which can be aggravated by second-hand smoke.
“To better protect your pets, take the same precautions as you would with a child – don’t smoke around them and keep them away from second-hand smoke.”