If your home is full of white upholstery, expensive carpeting and breakables, you’ll want to rethink you décor before bringing home a dog or cat. There’s no denying that pets mean more mess, but living with pets can be manageable and enjoyable with some planning. Here are just a few areas to consider when making your home safe and comfortable for your pets:
Give Them Their Own Space
Keeping pets safe and comfortable means paying attention to several areas of their lives, claims BobVila.com. Providing a comfortable place to sleep is very important. The area should be free from distraction and suited for the animal’s size and physical condition. If your pets don’t sleep on the bed, you might want to designate a special space for them to sleep or even give them their own room.
Convenience and sanitation are high on the list for potty training issues. Private and easy-to-clean litter boxes for cats are a necessity, and easy ways for dogs to get outside should be a priority. Litter boxes should be kept behind screens or in areas that won’t hold odors. Pet doors come in various styles, and many come with keys that open locked doors when your pets approach them.
Decorate With Them in Mind
Pets can take a toll on furniture, floors, rugs and decorations, explains the DIY Network. To combat these common issues, install hard floors like ceramic tile or painted concrete over carpet because they are more durable and easy to clean. If you want something a little more cushy, try using rugs that are easy and economical to clean. These will be easier and less expensive to maintain over wall-to-wall carpeting or hard wood flooring.
Additionally, you should consider different types of fabrics for carpeting, rugs and furniture. Use washable and stain-resistant fabrics like leather, twill and tough, synthetic fabrics rather than expensive and delicate chintz and silk, recommends DIY Network. Look at drapes and window treatments that make sense. You can still have long drapes; however, look for ones that can hang on rods and do not have long cords or strings that can get tangled. Otherwise, consider getting shorter curtains or blinds that will be less of a temptation to your pets.
Also, consider investing in a good vacuum like the Dyson DC14 to keep the inevitable hair and dander under control.
Keep Them Safe
Just as parents of crawling and toddling children need to baby-proof the house for safety, pet owners should pet-proof their homes, according to This Old House. Look for hazards at their eye level by getting down on your hands and knees. Look for things like choking hazards, exposed cords, open trash cans and pet accessible pantries and cabinets that expose dangerous food and cleaning items.
Keep animals out of cabinets with child locks, put protective covers on cables and cords so they can’t be chewed and close toilet bowls that have harmful cleaning chemicals. Also, don’t let dogs or cats chew on hazardous plants including mistletoe, Poinsettias, lilies, daffodils and hydrangeas.