“Anything’s paw-sible,” says Nikki Jurcutz, co-creator of the children’s safety organization Tiny Hearts, as she sheds light on a common pet accessory that could prove fatal to a child within just 20 seconds.
While nearly every pet owner has one of these items at home, few may realize the potential hazards associated with this seemingly innocuous object.
In a TikTok video that has garnered over 42,000 views this month, Jurcutz brings attention to the potential danger posed by a pet’s water bowl. The video was prompted by someone’s question: “Can my child drown in my cat’s water bowl?”
Jurcutz picks up her pet’s water bowl in the 10-second clip and relocates it to another room, closing the door behind her. She then asks, “Where is your pet’s water bowl?” and provides a reminder to move pet bowls to a safe area that is accessible to pets but out of reach for children.
She goes on to explain the potential risks, stating, “Kids can drown in 5 cm [2 inches] of water in just 20 seconds!”
Viewers of the video expressed shock in the comments, with one TikToker writing, “New fear unlocked.” Another questioned the logistics, asking, “How is the dog supposed to get water with a closed door?” A third commenter emphasized the importance of awareness but also noted the anxiety-inducing nature of the content.
Drowning remains the leading cause of injury-related deaths among children aged 1 to 4, as young children can drown quickly and quietly in as little as an inch or two of water, as warned by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). The greatest threat of drowning to families with young children is unexpected and unsupervised access to water. The AAP reports that 69% of all drownings involving children under the age of 4 occur outside of designated swim times.