Many people today consider their pets to be full-fledged members of the family. Most homes have a long way to go before they can be considered truly pet-friendly. From washable rugs to useful tips, we’re here to help with 13 essentials for a pet-friendly home!
1. High Storage
Pesky, curious dogs and cats can get into places they’re not supposed to get into… if they’re somewhere your pet can access. Store cleaners, chemicals, medicines, and any other dangerous materials up, up, and away from where your pets can get to them.
2. Put the Lid Down
Dogs and cats love to drink out of the toilet. Aside from the gut reaction that it’s water from a toilet (even though it’s pretty clean), the toilet can be a drowning hazard for small puppies and kittens. If you use any kind of cleaner in the tank to maintain the bowl, such as bleach tablets, it’s certainly not safe to drink.
Don’t risk it. There’s just no good reason to leave the lid up in a pet-friendly home.
Get familiar with the kinds of plants that are toxic to your pets. Their senses of smell and taste are different than ours, and they may be tempted to investigate mouth-first. Some of the most common culprits are Chrysanthemum, Lilies, Yew, Azaleas, Tulips, and Oleander.
A washable rug is a must-have if you have indoor pets. A rug with a pattern is even better, as the pattern can help disguise stains until it’s wash time. Rugs with low loops are better for pets, particularly cats, so their claws don’t get snagged.
There are a couple of different ways to approach upholstery. If the presence of pet fur on your furniture is a sticking point, you can simply disguise it by selecting upholstery that is similar to the color of your pet’s fur.
If you want to be more proactive, you can avoid fabrics like velvet or corduroy that tend to naturally attract pet fur. Leather and synthetic fibers can be a good choice for repelling fur and withstanding pet damage.
Textured walls are like magnets for pet fur. Pet fur has a tendency to get everywhere, so it doesn’t matter if they’re not in the habit of rubbing up against it. Opt for a satin or semi-gloss paint to help keep pet fur from getting out of hand.
7. Pet Security Camera
While they may not require the attention of a baby, your pet-friendly home will benefit from a pet security camera. If your mischievous cat or dog gets into stuff they’re not supposed to, you can see how it happened (and who the guilty party is.) Some models can even let you know when your dog is barking or your cat is yowling for you.
8. Pet Crate
While you need a pet crate for transporting your cat or dog to the vet (or for other purposes), it doesn’t have to be an eyesore in your home. Some modern crates look so much like furniture that you can hide them in plain sight.
9. Pet-friendly Cleaners
While some household chemicals will always be dangerous to you and your pets alike, there are also pet-friendly cleaning products. These are on of the essentials of a pet-friendly home.
Pet accidents will happen, so it’s a good idea to use safe cleaners in the likely areas. A washable rug is also a very convenient solution.
10. Non-spilling Bowls
This is particularly important for dog owners (or owners of very rowdy cats.) Nobody wants to clean up a spilled water dish or find kibble scattered across the floor. Stainless steel food and water bowls fit snugly into a silicone base, leaving nothing to tip over.
11. Stash Your Trash
Cats and dogs love to get into the household trash. They just can’t resist the sumptuous odors of discarded food. Keep a lid on your kitchen trash, and preferably keep it in a cabinet, such as under your sink.
12. Wires and Strings
These can present an irresistible temptation to cats and dogs alike. Ruining home electronics is the least of your worries. If your pet chews power cords, they could be in real danger. Try to minimize them, go wireless, or run them where they aren’t accessible. Cats love to play with strings and thread, but they can be harmful if ingested. Keep loose threads trimmed and any sewing projects or materials hidden.
13. Block It Off
If your dog or cat likes to hide behind utilities or appliances, they could be in danger of getting trapped or overheated. Play it safe and keep those areas blocked off from their access. This is especially important if you ever need to take a reluctant pet to the vet and they won’t come out.
Living with pets can be a dirty business. Washable rugs, spill-proof bowls, pet-friendly cleaning products, and thinking ahead can keep your home safe and happy for all members of your family. Keep these essentials for a pet-friendly home in mind.