PDSA is urging pet owners to quit lighting up around their pets - as it warns the toxic fumes could severely impact their health.

To coincide with National No Smoking Day– Wednesday 13 March – the veterinary charity is urging owners to quit for their pets’ sake.

The detrimental impact of smoking and second-hand smoke on humans is widely known, but the effect passive smoking can have on our pets is something that smokers often underestimate, or might not consider at all.

Research has shown that dogs can take in significant amounts of smoke when living in a smoking household. Cats seem to be affected even more than their canine counterparts. This is because smoke particles settle on their fur and cats then swallow these when they’re grooming themselves.

PDSA Vet Olivia Anderson-Nathan, said: “If pet owners knew the impact that smoking can have on their pets, I’m sure they would want to put measures in place to protect them.

“Vets regularly see the shocking impact of passive smoking on pets, from worsening respiratory problems like asthma through to more serious conditions or some cancers like lymphoma, which is twice as likely in cats if they are exposed to cigarette smoke.

Passive smoking in pooches is linked to breathing problems, difficult-to-treat nasal and sinus cancers in longer-nosed breeds and lung cancer in other breeds. In cats, their grooming habits mean that once smoke lands on their fur, they can swallow the harmful chemicals through licking. Cigarette smoke can also be harmful to pet birds and small furries, such as guinea pigs and rats, as they have sensitive respiratory systems.

Smoking outside or away from pets will help reduce the risk to pets, but best of all is stop all-together.