Easy Ways to Pet-Proof Your Home

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Easy Ways to Pet-Proof Your Home

Easy Ways to Pet-Proof Your Home

If you’re a pet owner, you already know that half the battle in creating a pet-friendly home is choosing the right furniture for your lifestyle. Let’s face it, that gorgeous white suede sofa just won’t work well with two dogs and a cat. But, just because you share your home doesn’t mean you don’t have options for living safely, comfortably and even stylishly. You don’t have to put up with shredded upholstery and hair-covered rugs when you use the following guidelines.

Keep It Clean

Keeping your house clean with cats, dogs and other pets is a matter of maintenance and some strategic planning. Some of the biggest cleanliness issues with pets are hair and bathroom habits.

To help with shedding, supplement regular sweeping and vacuuming with robovacs like Roomba. You should keep your animals off the furniture or train them to only use areas of the couch or chairs that are covered with pet covers. Furthermore, the ASPCA says frequency of brushing dogs and cats depends on how much hair they have. Brush short-haired animals once a week and longer-haired ones daily or every few days. Bathe dogs every three months, but do not bathe cats. If you have any problems grooming, consider asking your vet about the best way to do it and the right tools to use.

Make sure you tend to litter boxes daily to reduce odors and to prevent your cat from tracking litter through the house. Take the dog outside as often as possible, and train him or her to ask to go out.

Decrease the Damage

Chewing, scratching and digging cause damage to furniture, window treatments, table legs and door frames. The ASPCA recommends redirecting pet activities that cause damage to different, more acceptable items such as scratching posts or chew toys. Cover furniture with pet-proof covers, and restrict pets’ access to areas where they chew or scratch when you’re not home. Use baby gates or put them in a comfortable, enclosed area with toys and a bed. If your drapes or curtains are irresistible, consider replacing them with wooden or vertical blinds. Avoid broken collectibles, bric-a-brac and other décor by putting it out of reach of your pets. Use a sturdy display case or attractive, clear storage bins to keep them safely off tabletops and shelves.

Put It Away

Animals are curious and can get bored easily. When this happens, they often get into things. Keep your pets safe by putting away items that may be harmful to them, such as medications, lotions, wires, chemicals and clothing that has buttons or strings that can be swallowed. The American Humane Association recommends using childproof latches on cabinet doors to keep curious pets from getting into them. Keep trash cans covered or put away to keep pets away from odors and food scraps that may attract them.

Make a place to store your pet food that’s covered. Store pet toys and gear like leashes in a safe place. The more you organize and put things away in a house with pets, the better you’ll be able to manage your pet’s activity.

January 6, 2015 |

How to Pet Proof Your Home

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How to Pet Proof Your Home

We all love the furry additions to our family, but sometimes they can be a real pain. Between fur on the rugs, scratch marks on the new upholstery and cushions that smell like pee, decorating your home can be a challenge. Below are a few tips to keep your furniture and household accents pet-proof so you can enjoy your furry friends.

Section Off the House

If you don’t want a pet in a room at all, use a pet or baby gate, closed door or latch to prevent them from entering. This will not only keep your pets from ruining furniture in a specific room, but could prevent accidental injury from falling off beds, sofas or other high furniture. Establish boundaries early so that you can have an obedient and well-trained furry pal for life!

Create Their Own Space

Want to know why your pets want to get on the furniture? It’s so darn comfortable! Consider purchasing a spray repellent to deter dogs and cats from jumping on the couch or a Sofa ScramTM Sonic Mat, which is a pad with a noisy alarm that trains your pet to stay off. If you want a homemade solution, cats and dogs are reported to hate the sound of a can filled with coins, so you can easily make your own homemade noise maker. You also can leave it sitting on the furniture as a reminder when you’re not home.

Then, entice your pet with some furniture of their own. Create a little sanctuary that’s comfy, safe and cozy with a nice bed, blanket and some of their toys.

Prevent Spraying

Perhaps your cat or dog has started spraying or marking their territory on the legs of your couch or drapes. Not a habit that you want them to continually repeat, right? First, ensure that they feel safe so they don’t feel the need to mark their territory, especially if strange people or other pets are around. If that does not work, make sure the litter box is clean, but not too clean. Use a cat-friendly disinfectant so they feel comfortable and avoid disinfectants that contain phenols, which are toxic to cats, explains Blue Cross for Pets.

The best way to break that habit once it has occurred is to keep the animal away from the area for as long as possible while you remove any residual smell. Consider replacing long drapes at places like The Shade Store that can customize shorter, more pet-friendly options. Also, placing dry food in the same area can prevent your pet from using it again for that purpose.

Replace Damaged Goods

If you’ve read this article too late, it might be time to part with that beloved armchair or rug due to soiling or scratches. Invest in pet-friendly options and train your pets on how to behave around the new items.

For pieces that don’t smell, sell them at a yard sale or take it to your favorite charity or local Goodwill. Other options to consider are shelters, refugee centers and furniture banks. If you plan to claim a donation, first check the IRS database of qualified charitable organizations and Goodwill’s valuation guide.

August 22, 2014 |
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