We puppy parents know that the lack of storage for our furry friends is a real problem. While they can’t pick up after themselves or fetch their toys when tucked away, it’s helpful to have dedicated space just for their needs, especially when those needs are medicinal or behavioral. Master your dog’s storage needs with these five quick solutions sure to make your furry friendships a little easier to organize.
1. Sturdy Storage Is Key
When our dog was just a puppy, he liked to sniff around for his toys after we had put them away for him. With his small size and stature, we figured a wicker basket tucked into a cubby would do. After all, what sort of mess could he possibly make? Long story short, he destroyed the wicker basket, creating a pile of sticks and shards of wood that was not only messy but hazardous, too—all to get to his favorite toys. Take it from this pet owner: Pups are adventurous and very curious. Keep toys and treats in durable containers tucked away behind a sturdy cabinet door. If they have to be stored near the floor or somewhere Fido might sniff out, stash them in a plastic bin that won’t get destroyed by claws or teeth.
2. Have Designated Spaces
If you know that your dog likes to go outside as soon as you get home, or if he most often plays with his toys in the living room, keep the appropriate toys, leashes and other accessories in their most-used spots. Opt for a leash hanger at the front door that also fits keys and jackets, designate a kitchen cabinet for treats and foodand stow a storage bin in a hidden corner for your pet’s favorite toys for when he’s bored. By keeping your pet’s belongings in the places that they’re used the most, you’re less likely to lose a leash or misplace a favorite chew toy.
3. Create a Labeling System
If you have more than one pet, it can quickly become tricky to keep track of their different medicines, vitamins, flea repellants, shot schedules—you get it. Because your pets can’t tell you which food is theirs or when it’s time for their vet checkup, it’s up to you keep their needs in line and well-maintained. One of the easiest ways to do this is to create an organizational system with proper labeling. Add a few wall or floor cabinets to a laundry room or closet specifically for their medicine and health needs. Use bins or cabinet organizers in easy-to-distinguish colors or patterns, because written labels might get rubbed off and become illegible. Hang a calendar in the same spot marked with their schedules and vet appointments.
4. Keep It Clean
While we love our pets, we could do without the slobber, fur shedding and tracked mud. One way you can ensure your house and your pet’s belongings stay fresh and clean is by opting for easy-to-clean storage units and accessories. Use plastic bins instead of fabric or cloth baskets whenever possible. If your pet has dark fur, choose darker colors for your decor or storage areas (or lighter colors if your pet has lighter fur). If you have pet accessories that are cloth or covered in fabric, make sure they are machine washable so you can keep them well-kempt.
5. Make It Easy (For You!) to Reach
The last problem you want to run into is reaching for the doggy bags only to find you can’t quite reach the top cabinet and Fido has got to go. Stave off this problem by keeping your storage within arm’s reach, but out of paw’s reach. Under the sink, cabinets, drawers and closets are perfect places for pet supplies as they can be closed to ensure your pet doesn’t go snooping where he doesn’t belong. Add an extra cabinet or two to your kitchen to create an instant pet station that can’t be reached by furry paws.
What are some of your favorite storage solutions? Has your furry friend forced you to be inventive and come up with a unique stow-and-go option?