Pet proofing your home is an essential step in securing the safety and wellbeing of your pet, whilst also keeping your home as clean and tidy from pet mess as possible. The key to pet proofing your home is getting down on your hands and knees and viewing your home from your pet’s level. This way you’ll notice all the potential danger zones for man’s best friend. Below we suggest some key ways you can pet proof your home to ensure that you are able to blend your love for your pets with your love for your home!
Kitchens, Laundries and Bathrooms
These are some of the most dangerous rooms to your pets!
- Start by trying childproof guards and latches to stop little paws from prying open cabinets and cupboards.
- Place all medications, cleaners, chemicals and laundry supplies on high shelves and keep trash cans covered or inside a cabinet.
- Keep the toilet lid closed to prevent drowning or drinking of harmful cleaning chemicals.
- When it comes to kitchens, food is the best-known problem. Toxic animal foods include chocolate, avocados, grapes and raisins, macadamia nuts, onions, garlic and coffee. Aim to keep foods out of reach to pets because even if the food isn’t harmful, the wrapper could be!
Living & Family room
- In living and family rooms be mindful of dangling wires from lamps, VCRs, televisions, stereos, and telephones that could electrocute pets if chewed on.
- Put away toys, games and other knick-knacks that could be knocked over or destroyed.
- Check hidden or concealed spaces for dangerous items like string or rubber bands.
- Move common house plants that could be poisonous.
- Cover heating and air vents.
- Put away all sewing and craft goodies, especially threads and needles.
- Block off any small spaces and crevices that could become your pet’s next hiding spot.
- Similarly to laundries, it is best to move all chemicals to high shelves or behind secure doors. Consider doing the same with any sharp objects and tools that you store in your garage. Keep things like pesticides, gasoline, solvents, antifreeze, coolants and oils in a closed cabinet, and consider concealing smaller goods like screws, nuts, bolts and nails too.
- Before you leave your house in the morning be sure to bang on your car hood to ensure that your kitten, or any other neighbourhood cat, has not hidden in the engine for warmth!
- Allow for sufficient ventilation to make sure paint and chemical fumes don’t overtake your enclosed garage space. Where possible, leave windows and doors open to allow a cool breeze and keep the air in your garage space healthy.
- When it comes to bedrooms, keep clean laundry and shoes behind closed doors as drawstrings and buttons can cause major problems to your pet if swallowed.
- Similarly to other rooms of the house, keep any medications, lotions, or cosmetics off accessible surfaces such as the bedside table.
- Move electrical and phone wires out of reach of chewing reach.
- Keep jewellery, hair clips, pins and bands away from exploring pets.
- Also, be careful that you don’t close your pet in closets or dresser drawers!
When it comes to the great outdoors, it is more difficult to protect your pet from harm’s way.
- Start by being mindful of your pet around pools and spas, as chemicals in the water could poison your animal if they drink it. Take the time to teach your pet to swim and exit the water to assist in preventing them from drowning in pools, spas, ponds or water features.
- Ensure that lattice work and fencing are in good repair to ensure pets do not get stuck or crawl into places they shouldn’t go.
- Remain mindful of pets near balconies or railings where they could get stuck or slip through.
- Finally, compost, cocoa-based mulches, pesticides, insecticides, fertilizers and other garden chemicals can all problems for pets. Your first line of defence is keeping things stored away safely and out of reach!
Home styling tips to keep in mind
Lastly, it can be difficult to maintain a glamorous home whilst upholding a functional, safe home for your pets.
- We suggest starting by colour coordinating with your pet. Embrace lighter coloured furniture if your pet is white or lighter coloured as it will help to hide your pet’s fur easily and minimises cleaning efforts. For example, choose rugs with small patterns and dark colours that will help to conceal pet fur and stains, and stop your pet from digging their paws into the rug.
- We also propose opting for fabrics like velvet that, unlike upholstery fabrics, are not made with a looped thread. These allow very little for your cat to hook their claws into, and stops them from attacking your furniture.
- And if your pets are allowed on the furniture, invest in a beautiful but durable throw blanket to put on top of your seating area. Perhaps something made from boiled wool that will help to protect your seats but still have visual appeal!