Keeping your house clean as a pet owner can be difficult. Not only are you constantly vacuuming up pet hair and wiping muddy paw prints off the floor, but you also have to be conscious of whether the cleaning products you're using are safe for your cat or dog. Seventh Generation is a popular company that makes plant-based household cleaning products. Are Seventh Generation products safe for use around pets?
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Why the products you choose matter
Some common household cleaning products can be harmful to pets. Since our cats and dogs don't wear shoes or socks (well, most of them) and are prone to licking up things they find on the floor, they are more likely to be exposed to chemicals than a human who knows to wash their hands after using bleach. In addition, we don't always know what our pets are up to while we're at work all day. You might think nothing of mopping the floor and walking away while it dries, but a pet who walks over a surface cleaned with a harmful chemical could end up getting sick by accidentally inhaling or ingesting it. Pet owners take precautions to put certain foods out of reach of their pets and hide trash cans behind closed doors, and it's wise to select pet-safe cleaning products to avoid illness as well.
Ingredients to avoid
Certain chemicals commonly found in household cleaning agents can cause irritation to pets. These include bleach, chlorine, ammonia, isopropyl alcohol, formaldehyde, and phenols. Additionally, products that contain fragrances or dyes should be avoided by pet owners, particularly with products that the pet will come into direct contact with — such as laundry detergent used to wash a pet's bedding (or yours, if your pet has bed privileges).
Cats and dogs are much smaller and more sensitive than humans, and even small amounts of these strong chemicals can cause skin, respiratory, or gastrointestinal irritation if a pet comes into contact with them. Since our pets groom themselves frequently, a cleaning product could get onto their paws or fur and thus into their mouths.
Seventh Generation product ingredients
Seventh Generation products are listed as being hypoallergenic, safe for sensitive skin, and made without artificial fragrances or dyes. Their cleaning products — which include laundry detergent, multi-surface cleaners, disinfecting sprays, dish soap, and more — are also eco-friendly, as they are biodegradable, plant-based, and packed in recycled and reusable containers. The company also provides an ingredient glossary describing what ingredients are used and their environmental impact.
So how do their products measure up when it comes to pet safety? The list of ingredients for their multi-surface cleaners, disinfecting sprays, laundry detergent, and dish soap all come up free of any chemicals that are toxic to pets. Additionally, their unscented ("Free and Clear") laundry detergent earned a spot on multiple lists of the best pet-safe cleaning products. Seventh Generation's scented products are made with essential oils, not artificial fragrances, but not all essential oils are safe to use around pets. Fortunately, there are fragrance-free options for each line of products, which are generally considered safest for use in homes with cats, dogs, or other small animals.
Common household cleaning products which contain bleach, chlorine, ammonia, isopropyl alcohol, formaldehyde, and phenols can be harmful to pets. Our pets may accidentally ingest or inhale these chemicals, which can cause skin or respiratory irritation and stomach upset. In a home with pets, it's best to use non-toxic, fragrance-free cleaning products. Seventh Generation cleaning products do not contain any ingredients which are harmful to pets, and their fragrance-free options guarantee your pet won't come into contact with any artificial fragrances or dyes. If you're looking for a pet-safe cleaning product, Seventh Generation is a great option and is easy to find both in stores and online.