As a certified animal naturopath, I am often dismayed to find out during a consultation that there are still many pet owners that are not aware of the fact that household cleaners are toxic to pets. Many are still using toxic, household cleaners in their homes where they live with their beloved animal companions and family. I am finding that most pet owners are unaware of the seriousness of the health damaging affects from using household-cleaning products and even personal care products!
I won’t even begin to get into the the more commonly known household toxins such as Teflon chemicals (PFC), Fire Retardants (PBDE) and Mercury that are pets are taking into their bodies daily – there are several very in-depth and interesting studies you can read on the Environmental Working Group website about Polluted Pets them and I do highly recommend you read them all for your own health’s sake as well as your children and pets.
The intent of this article is to make you aware and yes, even frighten you as much as it is to empower you to understand how to have your dogs (cats and other pets) and yourself be as healthy as possible in this toxic world we live in today. I want to share solutions with you to this huge problem of our toxic household environment.
Did you know that more than 1.2 million children under the age of (5) five had poisoning exposure at home, according to Journal of American Academy of Pediatrics published August 2010. 2% were fatal and over 10,000 cases needed some form of medical treatment as a result of poisoning from exposure to household cleaning products. Over 700 of those children suffer residual disability, we can only imagine how many of our dogs (cats and pet birds) have been poisoned due to exposure at home and the very dis-eases they are now suffering with are due to that exposure – allergies, skin ailments, thyroid problems, etc.
“In recognition of the unique roles that pets play in our lives, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) undertook a study to investigate the extent of exposures pets face to contaminants in our homes and outdoor environments. In a novel study representing the broadest biomonitoring investigation yet conducted in pets, what we found was surprising.” (1)
The dogs and cats tested were found to be contaminated with 48 of 70 industrial chemicals tested, including 43 chemicals at levels higher than those typically found in people, according to the study of plastics and food packaging chemicals, heavy metals, fire retardants, and stain-proofing chemicals alone (Please NOTE: this test did NOT include cleaning products such as laundry soap, toilet cleaners, floor cleaner, air fresheners, etc.) in pooled samples of blood and urine from 20 dogs and 37 cats collected at a Virginia veterinary clinic.
We all clean our homes in some way everyday. Do you know what is in your household cleaning products?
Cleaning toilets, washing dishes, doing laundry and mopping the floors are household chores that most of us are familiar with. We cook, eat, put the dishes in the dishwasher (or do them by hand in some cases), add some dish washing cleaning products, turn on the machine and let it run.
It sounds simple, and not much thought may be given into process since most of us do it all without thinking about it . Where are the hazardous materials in your household cleaners?
Read the labels and you will find words like Caution, Warning, Danger, Poison, Flammable, Reactive, Corrosive, and Toxic.
Do you find those words in your cleaning products labels?
Most products have one or more of these words and even the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) asked this question: Did you know that most Americans add a pesticide to their washing machine to help keep white clothes white?
They wrote that this pesticide is also found in many household cleaning products to kill germs, clean mold and mildew from your shower or tub. Did you read the label? Yes, chlorine bleach is a pesticide -it kills bacteria, viruses, and fungi and is highly toxic and harmful to your body and your pets!
Children, seniors, pregnant women, those suffering from chronic disease with allergies, asthma, headaches and your pets are all at a higher risk from these toxic cleaners due to their immune systems being compromised. The EPA stated that, toxic substances are chemicals or mixtures that are harmful when inhaled, swallowed, or absorbed through the skin.
Can you hold your breath while you mop your floor or clean the oven? In other words, we are inhaling toxic chemicals while we clean. Our pets and family members are inhaling as well. Many of the household products like oven cleaners, floor cleaners, furniture polish, laundry detergents and drain cleaners are extremely toxic and leave residual odors from synthetic fragrances and the cleaning ingredients themselves. How about those bug sprays, flea and tick products? That is another can of worms when it comes to toxicity.
Some of us and/or pets already have some health issues that most likely are related to inhaling or touching surfaces “cleaned” by these products.
Other than chlorine bleach, here are a few of the most toxic substances used in household products:
alkyl phenol ethoxylates (APEs)
Laundry detergent and fabric softener ingredients pose a variety of health risks, ranging from relatively minor “symptoms” like skin irritants and allergies to the severe – cancer, poisoning, and neurological problems.
Laundry detergents and laundry stain removers frequently contain alkyl phenol ethoxylates (APEs), which are common surfactants. Surfactants, or surface active agents, are chemicals that make surfaces more susceptible to water, allowing cleaners to easily penetrate stains and wash them away. APEs can damage the immune system, and they’re suspected hormone disruptors, which mean they can mimic hormones in the body that regulate reproduction and development. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has also warned that ethoxylated alcohol surfactants, such as APEs, may be contaminated with carcinogenic 1, 4-dioxane, which penetrates the skin. Tests conducted in 1997 by the Washington Toxics Coalition found that supermarket or drugstore labels are more likely to contain APEs than name brands.
Your everyday laundry detergents may contain a combination of many toxic chemicals many of which are harmful to your health. Even Seventh Generation is can be considered dangerous Check out this posting at: http://myitthings.com/oldworldsecrets/Post/house/It-House/Seven-generations-should-be-long-enough-to-poison-us-/989222008172345355.htm
Studies in recent years show that many of the diseases our pets, children and even adults found may be linked to exposure to chemicals. Dogs have recently been diagnosed with ADD and ADHD and there has been an increase of them in children, mysterious reabsorption of puppies, miscarriages in women, respiratory problems, skin problems and the list continues because of exposure to chemicals.
What are your solutions? Are you ready to eliminate toxins in your home?
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We can go back to the natural, basic cleaning products of lemons, vinegar, etc. that worked for our great grandmothers or if you don’t’ have the time or inclination to make up these basic cleaners yourself, there are some all-natural products on the market, safe enough to be ingested! Be sure to read the labels even and especially on products labeled as “All Natural” “Green”, etc. and if you don’t see the natural source of the ingredients listed, it is synthetic and if synthetic, most likely toxic!
What do I personally use in my home?
Young Living has created a safe household cleaning product called Thieves Cleaner. There is no need for multiple cleaning products in your home any more! Concentrated Thieves household cleaner does it all. It is a very safe household product that if ingested by your children or pets will NOT cause any harm!
Thieves Household Cleaner can be used for cleaning pretty much everything in the home including:
- dog crates
- doing dishes
- washing laundry
- cleaning cuts and scrapes
However, the Thieves Household cleaner became so popular that the company went on to create Thieves laundry soap, dishwashing soap, dishwasher detergent and an entire line of not only toxin free cleaning products but a health and wellness line as well!
What is Thieves?
It is an essential oil blend created based on the historical tale of the four thieves in France who were protected when everyone else were dying during the Black Plague. They protected themselves with the essential oil of cloves, rosemary and other aromatics while robbing victims of the disease.
Stories have it that they gave away their secret recipes in exchange for a lighter sentence. Young Living Thieves blend is made out of clove, cinnamon bark, rosemary, lemon and Eucalyptus radiate.
Thieves household cleaner has many benefits. It is effective, safe to use, natural ingredients, no harsh synthetic chemicals, biodegradable, ecological friendly, has purifying ability, you can safely ingest it, is an all purpose cleaner – no need to have any other cleaning products in your home which gives you an average Savings is over $100 or more in household cleaning products. For more information on Thieves products click here.
(1)High Levels of Toxic Industrial Chemicals Contaminate Cats And Dog
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