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Cat Proof Floor Vents? (3 Stupid-simple Tweaks)

If you have floor vents in your home and your cat keeps messing with them you may be looking for a way to protect them (click here to see my best solution, on Amazon #Ad)

Can you cat-proof your floor vents?

You can cat-proof a floor vent. This is important to avoid cat hair and dander building up in it. Some of these solutions are simple, like a floor vent cover, while others may require some extra equipment, such as airflow directors.

Use these to protect your floor vents

Description Image My Rating
01. Magnetic Floor vent Cover (My Best)
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5 stars
02. Rubber Vent Cover
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03. Magnetic Air Vent Cover
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4 stars

So, now you know. But, can you train a cat just to keep away from them? What can a cat really do to these vents? Could a cat hurt itself on it?  Keep reading for these answers, and much more…

What are floor vents?

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Floor vents are metal or plastic grating with slots or holes to allow the warm or cool air to flow up through into the room. These grates can be plain or decorative when it comes to looks. They cover the duct that the air comes up through to heat or cool the room.

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Top 10 Cat Breeds

Your vents are usually located in areas that can be cold zones in the winter, such as doors and windows. If your home has central air, you will have vents in every room, so keeping your cat from rooms with vents as a way of cat proofing will be difficult.

Fresh air return grates

Your home will also have fresh air return grates. The fresh air returns are generally located in an interior wall. Fresh air grates are larger than floor vents and situated on the wall near the floor.

Their function is to return fresh lukewarm or cool air to the furnace. The return air helps the furnace fire burn better and provides more heat through the house.

What is the difference between a register and a vent?

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A register allows control of the airflow by partially closing or closing all the way. A vent has no control; it does not close.

Partially closing a register can also direct the air in a slightly different direction. It helps with reducing the heat or ac cooling in the room.

Can you train your cat to stay away from floor vents?

You can, but it will require an investment of time and patience. Also, it may not work at all. This can be frustrating for pet owners.

How to cat-proof your floor vents 

Here are a few tips to cat-proof your floor vents:

01. Vent Covers

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A great option is a floor vent cover. This is easy to use and quite easy to find. You simply follow the instructions and place them over the floor vent. But, make sure you check that it is applicable and safe for your home before usage.

02. Vent deflector

Put a vent deflector on it. this will not only direct the airflow but keep the cat from lying on top of the vent.

03. Ban Your cat from the room

Depending on your home, one other alternative is to keep the cat from the room(s) with floor vents. This option won’t work if you have floor vents in every room.

Why do cats like floor vents

Cats like floor vents for several reasons. The main one is the warm or cool air that flows on their body. The problem is, if they are lying on it, the air is not circulating through the room. When that happens, you end up too cold or too warm, depending on the time of year.

It also causes cat dander and cat hair to settle into the floor vent. Then, every time the air flows through the duct, the dander and fur is blown into the room.

To reduce these particles from mixing with the air, you are breathing, you will have to lift the vent off and clean it once a week. It is time-consuming. If you forget, it builds up and can cause smells you do not want in your home.

What can a cat do to your floor vents?

Depending on the weight of the cat and the type of vent covering, they can bend it. Worse, the cat can spray it, marking its territory. This spraying can cause your house to smell terrible. If the vent cover is metal, the spraying can cause it to rust.

Also, the cat will continue to spray there if you do not get all the smell out. It is best to use a pet accident solution that can be bought in pet supply stores. These solutions help break down the cat’s urine enzymes, so it takes the smell away.

Plastic vent covers can end up with nail or teeth marks if they chew on the cover.

One other thing is the cat hair they leave behind. It can clog your vent, and you will not get as much flow of heat or cooling from it. Because the vent becomes clogged, your room no longer has a comfortable temperature.

Could a cat hurt itself on a floor vent?

It is possible that a cat could hurt itself on a floor vent. One way is that their toenail gets caught on the vent cover’s underside when they are scratching it. It could also cause an allergic reaction in the cat, depending on the amount of dirt and pollutants in the ductwork.

If the floor vent is rusty and the cat has an open wound, the rust can cause infection. One other frightening thing that could happen is the cat crawls into the ductwork if the vent covering is loose.

Should you discipline your cat for touching the floor vents?

You should not discipline your cat in a negative way for touching your flor vents. Here are some methods to avoid, that some cat owners choose to do:

  • Using a noisy can (filled with coins) that you shake at the cat
  • Take a spray bottle with water in and squirt the cat; cats do not like being squirted
  • Startle the cat with a loud noise such as loudly saying no, ow, or some other word.

Can you distract your cat from floor vents?

You can momentarily distract your cat from floor vents if you are in the same room as the cat. A few ways to distract your cat are toys with some catnip, treats, mechanical toys, or during winter, provide the cat a warm place to lie.

A cat cave (bed) with a microfleece blanket in it can be warm and inviting.  You can also place the bed near the vent where they will feel the airflow.  It may just distract the cat from the vents.

You will never 100% distract your cat from the floor vents. Cats will do what they please for the most part.

If you use the tips above and provide a bed that can be warm in winter and cools in summer, you may notice that the cat will not bother the vent as much.

Lindsey Browlingdon