Pets can turn any house into a more alive and fun space, but they need to be taken care of in some of the same ways parents take care of their babies. When you have a pet, you need to keep an eye on where it goes, what kind of food it likes, and make sure that it is healthy. Whether you have a cat, a dog, or a smaller animal, a pet has its own set of cute habits and tantrums that can make you fall in love with it.
However, the most important thing is to keep your pet safe and away from danger all the time. There are not just external but internal threats that can harm your pet. For instance, if you have a cat that never sits and likes to roam around in the house, it may get into spaces that are too small and may injure itself while trying to get in or out of the area.
Therefore, it is very important to make arrangements in your home to keep your pets 100% safe and comfortable. So to help you out with the same, we have brought you the best DIY tips to make your home pet friendly, and the best part is that you don’t need to make any expensive arrangements to follow these ideas.
1. Install corner guards
Pets often like to chew and make marks on the corners and exposed wooden parts of your furniture. However, with a simple trick, you can prevent your pet from doing so. All you need is some cardboard pieces, a glue gun, and tape, and you can make your own pet-friendly corner guards similar to those shown in this video.
Since this DIY guard is transparent, it doesn’t affect the look of your furniture. Interestingly, you can also use this trick to cover any pointed or sharp metal surface that could hurt your pet.
2. DIY pet toilet area
If you are sick of filling the garden holes dug by your dog where they go to do their “private business,” then here is a solution that solves your problem. Using landscape fabric, pea gravel, landscape pins, and any border of your choice, you can make a dedicated toilet area for your pet. This would probably take only a couple of hours and could help discourage your pet from digging up your lawn.
Here is a video that explains the construction process for the DIY pet toilet in detail. Some pet owners choose synthetic grass or wood mulch to fill their DIY toilet, but pea gravel is the best choice as it does not have any smell or absorption-related issues, even after a long time. Of course, you will still need to clean up the mess.
3. Revamp your walls
You may notice that cats especially often feel the urge to rub their fur against walls and other surfaces. Rubbing transfers the cats’ scent to the surface and is a common way for cats to communicate and mark their territory. Cats are territorial, and when the cat rubs against a wall, it is transferring its scent – notifying others that this is their territory. However, the rubbing also makes your walls dirty, and cleaning them can be a headache.
Cats also often scratch furniture and walls. This can be more of a problem. Not only does it ruin the furniture and wall coverings, but cats especially have the habit of licking their entire body. So if any paint rubs off onto their fur, it could possibly get into their stomach as well.
Once the chemicals in the wall paint reach your pet’s mouth it can cause various problems including allergies and lung infections. Cats often scratch the walls because their nails are too long, and the hard wall provides a handy surface for sharpening and shortening their claws. It may also be a sign of boredom. The best way to stop this is to keep their nails trimmed (your vet can advise on the best way to do this) and to provide them with scratching posts and plenty of other ways to scent mark and ease their boredom.
To make it easier to clean walls that your pet insists on rubbing against, you can revamp your walls with good quality, washable satin or glossy paint.
The paint will get less dirty and be easier to clean. Eventually, your pet might reduce the time they spend rubbing against the walls.
4. Have pet-friendly plants
If ingested, indoor plants like sago, lilies, cyclamen, etc. can lead to various health problems ranging from vomiting to kidney failure in your pets. Therefore, it is very important to remove these plants from your home to ensure your pet’s good health. However, it doesn’t mean you can not keep plants if you have a pet at home.
There are numerous pet-friendly alternatives such as parlor palm, spider plants, African violet, succulents, etc. These plants will beautify your living space and won’t affect your pet’s health if they are chewed on.
If you want to know more about which plants are harmful to your pets, here is a list of of toxic plants from The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). Also, in case you have a big garden that has lots of weeds. It’s best to always use a safe weed killer spray to eliminate those pet-harming plants from your garden.
5. DIY pet-proof trash can
Pets have a habit of exploring the trash cans, especially the ones placed in your kitchen but this habit could have consequences. The waste from trash cans such as thin plastic packaging, fruit and vegetable seeds, and spoiled edibles can prove to be detrimental to your pet’s health – not to mention make a mess of your kitchen. However using some easily available tools at your home, you can make your trash cans pet-proof.
Here is a video suggesting a DIY trick that can be applied to any ordinary metallic trash can. This will prevent your pet from getting into the trash can. Also, a tip – whenever you go to the market to buy a new dustbin, always buy one that comes with a locking feature.
6. Install a protective net to save your pet
Among all pets, cats are most likely to get injuries by falling out of windows, balconies, and other places of height. This is because cats love to sit on windowsills and watch the birds and insects fly by. If the cat decides to try and chase one, or if they are startled by a loud noise, they may leap or fall from the window, balcony, or other high place and become injured.
Veterinarians refer to a common set of injuries sustained from falling from two stories or higher as “High Rise Syndrome“. However, people living in high-rise buildings (or any building with more than two floors – many cat injuries occur at lower heights) can easily avoid such incidents by installing a net (also called an anti-fall fence) on their balconies and windows.
Here is a video that guides you through the process of installing an anti-fall fence. One thing you need to keep in mind while buying a net is to always check the stretchability and size of the holes. Kittens and puppies have very flexible bodies and they can easily jump out through big net holes.
7. DIY luxury pet furniture
If you think the pet sofa bed shown in the image is very expensive, then you are seriously wrong. This luxurious pink sofa is made from cardboard boxes, foam, glue, pink velvet cloth, screws, hardboard, pink fake fur, old furniture legs, and some pieces of white and black fabrics. Can’t believe it? Well, here is the proof.
This DIY sofa bed will cost you not more than 300 bucks, and it is the perfect gift you can give to your adorable pet. So forget about the expensive pet furniture pieces you often find in the market and start making this one. It will save you a lot of money and perhaps make your pet proud of you.
Editor’s Note: This is a part of our special DIY HOME ISSUE, where IE explores the best tips and tricks to impress guests with your engineering skills.
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