Pet-Proof Your Place
When getting a pet or moving to a new place, it can be a little overwhelming to think of everything that needs to be done for things to be pet-proof. Have no fear—read on for some tips and tricks to keep your fuzzy ones safe and your home nice and clean.
Precautions to Take for the Little Ones
Small spaces can cause great panic in your home for your little animals, such as puppies and kittens, or small dogs and rodents. To keep these little fur balls out of trouble, make sure you apply the proper care to pet-proofing certain areas in your home. For instance, if possible, block off the area around your washer and dryer, with furniture or simply by keeping the door to a laundry room closed at all times. If this isn’t a possibility in your home, think about putting a baby gate in front of this area while you are home, and when you are away from home, keep your little animals in an area of your home where they can’t reach that washer/dryer area.
Another step to take for your little guys is to fix holes in your home. If you recently had repair work done or have a spot of any kind where a hole in the wall has been formed, be sure to get it fixed up as soon as possible (and have it blocked off in the meantime). If for some reason that hole in the wall needs to stay there, make sure you block off the area from your pet. On that same note, keep nooks taped or boarded off, or sufficiently blocked. It’s always safe to make sure the areas you wouldn’t be able to reach in or fit in are blocked off in some way.
Whether it’s a small crawl space, a gap in floorboards, or uncovered air vents, make sure you keep them covered, filled, or blocked so your animal doesn’t get stuck.
Keeping Your Pets Away From Hazardous Materials
Everyday objects in your home have the potential to be dangerous for your animals, so be sure to keep certain items away from where your pet could reach them. A good idea to start with is to keep lotions, sunscreen, perfumes, makeup, and sprays of any kind in child-locked cabinets or drawers (getting child locks for cupboards and cabinets is a good idea in general whilst pet-proofing, or child-proofing, your home). If you have an animal that can’t open a drawer, then that would be a good place to put these items. Keep medications tucked away in a safe place where your animals can’t find them, hide them, or swallow them.
Keep wires and cords of any kind away from where your pet could reach them. Keep your pet away from hot irons (curling irons, straighteners, and hot irons for ironing laundry, etc.) and make sure the cords are wrapped up and the item is put away when it is cooled off. Cords could seem like a fun thing for your animal to play with, but it could easily get looped around your animal (or your animal could bite through them). Be sure to also hide away any other wire-like object, such as spools of thread, shoelaces, and loose wires near entertainment systems or in the walls of your home; even strings on sweatshirts and pajama pants could cause a choking hazard for your pet, so be sure to keep this type of laundry tucked away from your pets. If you have wires around electronics, try taping them safely to the wall with clear packing tape. This way, your wires will still be used as intended while also being safe for your pet, and as an added bonus, they will be tidy and knot-free!
Some objects are a little more obvious when it comes to safety. As you would a child, keep dangerous objects such as knives and other silverware and cutlery out of reach from your pet. Be sure to also keep your pots, pans, and dishes in a safe spot as well (particularly hot or breakable ones). Keeping your knives in a safe spot like a child-locked cabinet is a good idea.
Other Tips for Keeping Your Home Safe for Your Pet
A few last tips to consider whilst pet-proofing your home are as follows:
*Keep the toilet lid shut at all times in your bathrooms
*Keep closets closed if harmful materials or small spaces are hidden within
*Keep your kitchen counters and shelves clear of clutter. Your animal could cause harm to the object and him/herself whilst playing (particularly a cat).
There are so many precautions we can take in pet-proofing our homes, much of which is up to the owner’s discretion as everyone’s living space is unique and different. Use your judgement as you carefully consider what items you have in your home and how they could potentially harm your animal. It’s easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, so as you move into a home or as you pick up a pet for the first time, try taking care of these safety measures right away so you can rest easy, breathe, and simply enjoy your pet.