Life in the Dog House – How to pet-proof your home

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dog proof

A DogGeek.com exclusive by Teresa Barker

They say that curiosity killed the cat, but dogs are curious beings too! With their acute sense of smell leading them on household adventures, dogs can get into many toxic, unsafe or downright nasty things. Keeping the house safe for dogs is as easy and simple as what you might do to keep a child safe, and can save you clean up time and visits to the vet.

  1. Kitchen: We’ll start here because food is a powerful motivator for the adventurous dog.
    • Keep food off of the countertops and table
    • Put child-proof locks on cupboards that store food and are waist height and below
    • Keep the trash can in a locked cupboard (that goes for any room)
    • Store all toxic cleaners and chemicals locked or above waist high
    • Keep your dog’s food/water bowls away from areas that are sprayed with cleaners frequently
  2. Bathrooms: Keep door closed when not in use, but additionally, keep the trash can in a locked cupboard. Dogs are drawn to bathroom waste like kids are to a carnival.
    • Treat your grooming products as tantalizing and toxic, so out of reach
    • Bathroom cleaners should be locked up tight
    • Anything on the outside edge of the bathtub is fair game, even razors, so keep everything on the inside ledge or up
  3. Bedrooms have everything from dirty tissue on the nightstand to kids toys that are incredibly similar to dog toys.
    • Put away all children’s toys
    • Keep trash cans in locked cupboards
    • Keep pills and lotions off of the nightstand
    • Check under your bed once and awhile to see what’s under there (not just monsters!)
  4. Living rooms are usually full of wires and remotes and all kinds of dangerous objects when chewed.
    • Keep wires out of reach and remotes up high
    • Make sure that your houseplants aren’t toxic to dogs
    • Scented candles smell delicious and dogs can’t read the label, so keep them off of coffee tables
    • Keep candy/snack dishes off of coffee and end tables

A general rule of thumb when dog-proofing your house is: If he can reach it, he’ll try to eat it. If the items in your house within your dog’s reach wouldn’t digest well, then move them. Lock them in a cupboard, put it up higher, put a lid on it, or put locks on cupboard doors. Dogs are driven by their sense of smell and can be very mischievous when left alone. If your dog does eat your glasses, TV remote, or clothing (all of which have happened at my house) call your vet immediately.

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March 17, 2014 |

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