Our dogs, cats and other pets like hamsters and fish are more than just animals to us. They are our pets. We live with them, take care of them like our own babies and make it sure they have fun. But in the process of taking care of them, we tend to overlook the fact that a home unfriendly to pets is hazardous to their health and consecutively to their fun. We try to accommodate them in the setup that we have created for ourselves and our family and ignore the fact that that setup is not friendly to them as we know that drier is not a place to call your resting spot, but pets don’t understand that. The saddening part is even pet owners don’t realise the importance of a pet friendly setup.
What you need to do while building a new home or while thinking of adding a pet to your family is to think about the specific needs of a pet. How a cat cant be left alone with reachable glasses on table tops. How dogs cant be dashing out of the house to find themselves on a high traffic street and specially to think about the things that affect pets but not humans. With the further pints, you’ll be able to create a home for your pet and your family to live in perfect synchronisation, not worrying much.
1. Think on all fours
When you get down to the thinking process of your pet, you get to have a point of view of things which can be hazardous to your fluffy friend. Look for stuff which can cause choking or strangulation to pets. Keep the garbage away from your pet’s reach, keep food items like chocolate, grapes and any other item which is hazardous to him health like antifreeze, pesticides, etc away from their reach buy putting them in latched cabinets. Keep your toilet down as you wouldn’t want your cat or dog fishing down the drainage to attract bacteria and viruses which can be fatal to their lives and the lives of the residents. The medications for humans should be kept out of reach of pets as they do not have the same effects on animals and cause major discomforts to them. Knowing about the things that can poison your pet beforehand can help you and your pet avoid conditions which involve regular visits to the Vet.
2. Dedicate a space
Pets like cats and dogs are very curious about open and closed spaces like the driers, loose cabinets, and other dangerous places. It’s important to provide them with their own defined space which will then minimise your worry about them taking up refuge in other uninhabitable areas. A defined area with a cozy bed, a fixed feeding bowl and harmless toys can distract your pups and kittens away from other locations in your house. You could go ahead and include a washing area for them in your bathroom with enclosures and a drainage system. You could provide a cat litter bathroom and something similar for your dog but away from feeding areas. An entry and exit door from your mud room to your house can help your pup wander out in an enclosed area without the scare of cars. A pet fountain and sturdy toys can always add charm for your pet to access water and fun time without much trouble.
3. Flooring and fabrics to suit your pet and you
Carpet in a house of pets is a nightmare for residents. Carpet is a retainer of dust and, in this case, pet fur. The fuzzy hair of your pets get attached to the carpet and thus can create a lot of trouble for you to remove them. To stay clear of such troubles you can use the stylish fabrics of easy care leather and ultra-suede. These fabrics are easily wiped clean and don’t require as much maintenance as carpet. However if you wish to keep carpet, wall to wall, make sure the carpet is in the same shade as your pet’s fur to avoid the easy identification of your pet’s hair on the carpet lying around. Make sure that you are vacuuming your carpet at least twice a week with special vacuum cleaners which make it sure that the fuzzy fur of pets are extracted from your carpet and your house.
4. Pet washing and cleaning
Grooming your pet is a tough task, tedious and time taking. But the moment you take it in your hands, rather than going to the pros, you will save money which can be invested further in better grooming and cleaning of your pet and your home respectively. Brushing your furry pet before and after washing them can help prevent hair clogging the drainage during washing and the left over hair post washing to hamper your carpet. If the flooring and fabric isn’t pet friendly, stain removal is something that you’ll have to learn as and when they come. For such stains, you’ll need to monitor your pets and be ready with the best ways to remove them for your pets to not catch a habit of the same. Along with these, you will need to keep a track of flees and ticks that your pets might carry and hence it is suggested to use shampoo and other cleaning products to keep your pet and your home clean and healthy and most importantly inhabitable.
5. Yards and outside playing areas
If your pets are used to going in the open, whether it be your yard or a park outside your home, you will have to worry more than just flea and tick. Your yards need to be built keeping in mind your dog can escape and easily move on to the road. You will need to install fences and add structures. Apart from building your yard escape proof, you will also need to take care of the kind of flora you have provided and if any of the plants growing there could be poisonous to your pet. The APSCA keeps an extensive database of toxic and non-toxic plants for pets. Make sure that in order to make it a more environment friendly playing area for your pet, you are not accidentally killing him.
6. Feeding and nourishing
While trying to save up on pet food, we tend to buy in bulk. This bulk amount of food can be a little hard to safeguard from contamination and also from the direct reach of your pet. This can be achieved by providing a storage area with a latched door. These latched doors are hard to swing and are therefore, out of reach of your pets. While it’s a common practice to store food in large garbage cans in your garage, overtime the food gets contaminated due to being exposed to high temperatures and the plastic of the container disturbing the nutritional value of the food stored. It’s suggested to have a separate storage for your pet’s food and to be served with a clean scoop and in clean bowls.
A home for pets is safe only when you are aware of your pet and what enriches them and what harms them. Stop thinking of your pets as animals and disposable, rather as a part of your home and how it is important to make home worth habitable for them as well.