Becoming a pet parent for the first time in your life can be extremely thrilling. When you bring a baby kitty or a puppy home, they can turn your life around. However, before the new member of the family arrives, you need to prepare your house for a pet!
Believe it or not, pets require a lot of care, especially when they are still young. So, you need to make your space more pet-friendly and successfully welcome a new member into the family.
But how can you prepare your home? What are the main things you need to purchase and re-organize before the pet arrives? If you’re uncertain about these, and many more other things, check out these 10 ways to make your home more pet friendly.
1. Pet-proof the fragile things
Is there a priceless vase on your table that’s been in your family for years? Or maybe you have unique ceramics on the display in your home? They might need a nice place when your pet arrives.
Puppies and kittens are known to be natural explorers. They will want to get to know their new home before they settle down. So, anything fragile and easily breakable should be put out of reach.
Also, keep in mind that puppies wag their tails. So, anything in the same level as their tails should be put away. On the other hand, kitties love to climb and knock things over. You won’t be able to teach your cat not to do that straight away, so make sure that the fragile and precious items are safely stored somewhere else.
2. Keep the dangerous items out of reach
Pets are naturally curious. They like to sneak into the places where they shouldn't be, such as machine washers and behind the TV. Even though this may seem innocent and cute at first, your pet's life could be in danger.
Don’t allow them to take a nap in the clothes dryer or play behind the telly. They might get stuck or even badly hurt. For example, if your new puppy likes to bite things due to its growing teeth, make sure that the cables are out of the way for its safety.
In addition to that, ensure that the dangerous chemicals and outlets are out of the reach. You wouldn’t want them snooping around the bleach, would you?
3. Create no-no areas
No-no areas are essential when raising a pet. Even though they are utterly adorable, they can’t control you. You don’t want your dog sniffing around the food in the kitchen or your cat walking on the kitchen counters? It’s simple, mark them as no-no areas.
However, you can’t forbid them to move around the house. Therefore, you can purchase a puppy gate to keep your pets away from the kitchen and dining area, until you train them not to dig through the trash or jump on the counters.
A similar principle should be applied to potty training. Let's face it, potty training a puppy won't be easy. However, if you create a special "toilet" area for your pet, they will easily learn where they can and where they can't potty.
4. Pets and furniture
Many people at first don’t want their pets on the furniture. But who can say no to the cute puppy dog eyes or the loud purr? That’s why you need to adjust your furniture for pet use, or get your pup their very own bed.
If you already have a couch, buying a new one shouldn’t be an option. Instead, create a trendy yet tidy atmosphere by throwing a duvet cover over one part of the couch where your pet can nap. Simply, throw it in the washer and have a clean couch every day. That’s how you’ll keep your seating area hair and dirt-free.
Similarly, you can buy special protective covers to prevent your pets from scratching your furniture. Provide your pets with the places where it is okay to sharpen their claws, such as cat climbing structures.
5. Create a special corner for them
Pets love having their “place” in the home. It’s a place, such as a crate or a corner where they can undisturbedly rest. So, to make your four-legged friend comfortable, consider creating a special corner for it. What do you need to do?
One of the main things many pets need is a bed to sleep on. Consider purchasing one high-quality dog bed where your pet can lounge, rest or play. Make sure that their corner is in the living room or an area where they can be close to you as you sit down and relax.
Creating their special corner can also be beneficial if you’re training your dog. For instance, make your dog stay there when the guests arrive to prevent uncomfortable situations.
6. Food place
One of the crucial things about creating a pet-friendly home is the food place. Where will you preserve their food out of reach and where will you feed them? If you don’t have a designated feeding station, make one as soon as possible. That will teach your pets not to drag or beg for food elsewhere.
Make sure that your pets have adequate bowls for their size. Even though your puppy may be small now if it's a larger breed you'll need to buy a new bowl soon.
When it comes to finding a safe place to keep food, you need to make sure that your pets can’t reach it. If they like to eat, they are more likely to dig through the food bags and eat on their own. So, prevent the bad food smell and mess by creating a designated food place.
7. Make sure they have enough stimulation
Even though pets love to sleep, they love to play as well. You should spend time with them as much as possible, however, sometimes they need to entertain themselves if you’re busy. That’s why providing your pets with enough toys is essential to get them through the day.
What kinds of toys are the best for your pet? There is no simple answer to that question. It all depends on your pet's personality. Some cats love to play fetch, while dogs may prefer different kinds of activities. Try out and see what works the best for your fur baby.
If you want your pets to learn through playing, enrichment toys might be the best option. They will exercise your pet's brain which is equally important to exercise its body!
8. Petscape your yard
Exercising your pet is vital for their health. Depending on the type and breed of pet you have, they require different levels of physical activity. For, high-maintenance pets, the best option is to have their own yard. But what will happen to your garden?
Before you let your little angels run with the wind in your yard, make sure you've pet-proofed it. Create a garden that will be suitable for you and your pets needs. One of the first things you need to consider is keeping the flowers and veggies safe. So, get a fence before they start digging.
On the other hand, you need to provide your pet with a large area where it can run. So, instead of adding too much landscaping details, consider "petscaping" your garden. Add interactive playgrounds or large lawns where your pet can run, train and play.
9. Clean pet, clean home
After walks and "zoomies" in the yard, chances are your pet's paws are dirty, wet and filled with debris. Imagine letting your dog inside and he leaves a wet, dirty trail behind him, so, you have to wipe the freshly washed floors all over again. Wouldn’t that be horrible?
But is there anything you can do to prevent your dog’s paws from getting dirty? You can make them stay inside at all times. Instead of that, get absorbent outdoor mats which collect dirt and moisture from your dog’s paws.
Besides keeping your home clean, outdoor mats create the perfect welcoming atmosphere in your home. In addition to that, your pet can also use them to sleep on during warmer days. Is there anything better than that?!
10. Choose adequate floors
Even though you can train your pet not to go potty inside, accidents may happen especially when they are young. So, to prevent any damages and catastrophes in your home, you need to choose adequate floors.
What kind of floors would be the best option? Numerous types of floors exist on the market, but you need the best one for your home. You need a floor that won't get damaged with possible accidents, the scratch-resistant floors and the floor that looks nice and aesthetically pleasing.
Does such flooring exist? Not yet, but various options vary from your budget and taste. So, if you don't want to spend large amounts of money on the floor, buy cheaper linoleum and change it when it wears out.
As you can see, you need to adapt your home before your new family member arrives. Whether you’re getting a puppy, kitty or any other kind of the pet, their safety comes first. So, eliminate possible hazards and keep your pet safe and entertained in your home. In the end, your house won’t matter as long as you and your pet are happy.
About the Author:
Jasmine Anderson is a Sydney based lifestyle blogger and a toddler mom, with a Fine Arts Bachelor’s degree. Expressing herself through different mediums is what keeps her spirit bright. She loves to spend quality time with her family, go thrifting, and spend just a little bit too much time on the internet.