Cats and fireplaces... - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-16-2004, 03:25 AM Thread Starter
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Cats and fireplaces...

My roommate lit our first fire of the house in her room tonight. (she has a converted living room...there were 2 living areas). At first the cats seemed to be afraid of it, but they kept getting closer and closer to the screen... and we kept shooing them away. I really don't want either of them getting burned, what can we do to keep them away while a fire is roaring?

<--Julia
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-16-2004, 10:21 AM
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Good question. I actually have no idea!! I bet they will be curious first and proabably will want to hang out in the area for the warmth. Good luck. I hope someone has a good suggestion.

~Shelly~

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-16-2004, 11:14 AM
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I haven't got a clue...as I write this, Assumpta is sprawled right in front of the woodstove (which we use as our only heat source). You could add an extra screen, or add a tempered glass screen to try to keep them safe from sparks, but most cats I know really like to flop in front of a woodstove or fireplace. Other friends of ours say that their cats like to sleep under the stove, but Assumpta seems to like it best right in front of the firebox (probably because that's where she can be the most in the way).

I usually make sure to pick Assumpta up and move her away from the stove several times a day, as cats can overwarm themselves inadvertantly (I check her every time I walk by). When we first got her, the only really severe punishment she ever received was the one time that she jumped up on the stove when it was cold, but she has never attempted it again. I also make very sure to brush her daily withiout fail during stove season, as she tends to shed more as a result of the basking.

But I have no idea how you might keep cats away from the warmth of a fire. Since it's a fireplace, you'll probably be there whenever it's burning, so it may be easier to spend your energy trying to make sure that there are adequate screens and checking the cats periodically and moving them away from the fire if you think they're getting too warm.

Incidentally, a fireplace is my first memory of Assumpta. When we went to my neighbor's house to meet her, they brought her out of the bedroom, a skinny, scraggly lump of matted fur with intense eyes. When they put her down, she casually walked into the (unused) fireplace, climbed up the chimney, and sat on the flue with just her tail hanging down in a very relaxed "J." I was sold instantly...I just had to have this kitty!
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-18-2004, 10:00 PM
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lol.. now that i think of it one of my first memories of my troublemaker was the fireplace too. I had just brought him home and he was really scared and ran into the fireplace....(it wasnt turned on..just ashes) poor thing had to have a bath which added to his trauma of being in a new place.

"I found one day in school a boy of medium size ill-treating a smaller boy. I expostulated, but he replied: 'The bigs hit me, so I hit the babies; that's fair.' In these words he epitomized the history of the human race." -Bertrand Russell
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-18-2004, 10:03 PM
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We've never had a problem, but we have a screen in front of it, so the cat can't get closer than a couple feet.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-18-2004, 10:13 PM
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My cats love the fireplace. When it gets a bit cold in the house, they sit right in front of it, and "ask" me to start a fire! We have a heat exchanger with glass doors. I think it's the safest way to go!

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-18-2004, 11:25 PM
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that is too cute.

"I found one day in school a boy of medium size ill-treating a smaller boy. I expostulated, but he replied: 'The bigs hit me, so I hit the babies; that's fair.' In these words he epitomized the history of the human race." -Bertrand Russell
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-19-2004, 01:51 AM
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I have a fire place and a screen and my cats have never had any problems. If you put your hand on the screen when the fire's on, is it too hot to the touch? If not, I wouldn't worry.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-19-2004, 03:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeanie
My cats love the fireplace. When it gets a bit cold in the house, they sit right in front of it, and "ask" me to start a fire! We have a heat exchanger with glass doors. I think it's the safest way to go!
How ADORABLE is that?!? "Fire please, Mommy!"

We're redoing our fireplace, and adding glass doors too! We'll still have to open the doors when the fire is going, but we never leave it unattended. Mozart has wandered right up to the fire, little bugger, and looked like he was really thinking about leaping into it! And seeing how my Pixie wasn't too put off sticking her face into a candle flame, I can't credit these two with any fire smarts.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-19-2004, 09:20 PM
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We live in an apartment and we bought an inexpensive screen at Target. That's worked really well so far. The cats love to be near the fire, but they are far enough away not to get burned.
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