Photo by Erda Estremera on Unsplash

Much like human babies, our fur babies are curious creatures that tend to get into places where they shouldn’t be. Whether they’re underneath the dining table or next to the stairwell, your pet is always seeking nooks and crannies where they can sniff around. That said, pets can sometimes fail to determine whether certain spots in the house are safe for them to explore. If you have a fur baby yourself, you’re probably aware that being responsible for them also entails making sure that your home is free of elements that could harm your kitty or pup.

Many pet parents already have arrangements in place to ensure an optimal living space for their pets. But others may not be so sure if their precautions are adequate enough. If you belong to the latter group, here are some characteristics that your home should have for it to be considered safe and comfy for your pet.


Security Over Small and Fragile Household Items

Ideally, everything fragile must be kept out of reach of children and pets to prevent messes and injuries. In addition to placing these items on high shelves, you can opt for space-saving storage solutions such as cabinets, baskets, and trunks to store anything that your pet might chew on or scratch up.

Dogs, for example, can mistake almost anything for playtime knickknacks: a remote control, a wallet, or something breakable such as a glass thermometer. For this reason, you may want to divert their attention to items like custom plush toys that your dog to recognize as their own. Instead of gnawing on the remote every time you need to watch TV, your pup will be able to stay focused on their favorite toy and prevent mishaps from occurring around the house.

It’s also wise to invest in sturdy and high-quality pet items like stainless steel bowls instead of fragile plastic or glass ones. That way, you’ll prevent additional damage to pet items and have the assurance that your household is more pet proof. 


Child-Proof Cupboards for Cleaning Solutions, Medications, and Kitchen Ingredients

Cleaning agents and human medicines can be lethal to pets like dogs and cats, which is why they need to be stored away from sight. A pet-proof home should ideally have lock cupboards so that your pet won’t get into the spices, cooking oils, knives, or any other kitchen item that could harm their bodies. It would be a good idea to invest in child-proof locks, too, so that your cupboards will be extra safe from prying hands and paws.

Aside from kitchen ingredients and medications, cleaning solutions like baking soda and detergent must also be locked away to keep your pet from getting poisoned by harmful chemicals. Do your due diligence before an emergency happens. 


No Poisonous Plants

Some plants are harmless to humans but incredibly toxic to dogs, cats, and most other animals. Plants such as aloe vera, lily, and daffodil are quite poisonous to dogs, and they may cause symptoms like vomiting and irritation. Although plants add greenery and beauty to your home, it’s best to buy plants that won’t make your fur baby ill.


Secure Power Cords

Chewing is another trait that pets like dogs are known for, and cords usually fall victim to this doggy habit. A home that’s safe for pets should not have electrical cords lying around, nor should electrical outlets be left exposed as they could potentially electrocute your dog. Ideally, cords should be kept stuck to the ground and secured with a protective covering around them to prevent pets from digging them out and chewing on them. Adding that protective covering will ensure that your pet stays safe against electrocution whenever they’re playing inside your home. 


Stable Furniture

Kids, cats, and dogs can all be quite high-energy and chaotic at different moments, which is why it’s generally recommended to keep your furniture stable if you live with pets and/or children. Unstable furniture can knock over large items such as TVs and bookshelves, which could cause serious injury to your baby as well as your fur baby. When pet-proofing your home, it’s highly recommended to place anchors or brackets to secure large furniture such as sofas and cabinets.


Safety Gates and Coverings

Items like doggy doors help prevent pets and children from getting into restricted areas such as your home office or the wine cellar. As such, a pet-proof home should have some of these installed. Aside from safety gates or doggy doors, a pet-friendly home should ideally have covered crawl spaces to prevent injuries and accidents should your dog or cat slip under them. 


Outdoor Enclosures

Naturally adventurous pets can sometimes venture out of your home and into the unknown. To keep your pet from exposing themselves to outdoor risks like poisonous berries and insects, you can enclose your patio or backyard with wire mesh or screens. Homes with these features are well-suited for keeping kitties and pooches safe, even if they get distracted by the neighborhood squirrel. It’s especially crucial to have enclosures if you live in areas with a population of known predators, particularly wolves, coyotes, and cougars.


A Final Word on Pet-Proofing Your Home

While the items mentioned above are the main features to look for when puppy-proofing your home, this isn’t a definitive list of all the things you should consider. For example, you may want to look into flooring options such as laminate, hardwood, and limestone, which are touted for withstanding clawing by sharp doggy and kitty toenails. You should also remember some best practices when living with a pet, including securing your garbage cans to prevent scavenging or keeping the toilet lid down to ward off thirsty dogs or cats. 

Taking care of a pet will be tough at first, but with precautions like the ones above, life with your fur baby can be just as fun and easy as a walk in the park—and just as safe and reassuring.