Owning a dog comes with many benefits, but it also comes with commitment and responsibility. One of them is making sure that your house is safe and comfortable for your pet. So, before you bring your dog home, it’s important to get prepared first to make sure you can provide for all their needs. Aside from buying a dog bed and a food and water bowl, there are some other things you’ll want to do to ensure you create the perfect environment for your pet.
Install a Dog Door
One of the easiest ways to adapt your home to suit your new family member is to install a dog door. Aside from improving the quality of life for your four-legged friend, a pet door also makes it easier to care for your animal, especially if you have a busy schedule.
Wondering is a good idea to have a dog door? Providing your dog with free access to finish their business whenever they have to and play in the backyard is the best way to keep them healthy, happy, and safe. Dogs, especially the large ones, need to be able to explore and get in and out of the house as needed. Plus, it isn’t safe for any pet, whether they’re small or large, to refrain from urinating for long periods of time – it can lead to urinary tract infection. One great way to reduce this risk is allowing your dog access to go outside and relieve themselves when the urge arises instead of waiting to be let out.
Pet doors come in many sizes and styles, and the best one really depends on your dog breed. For small dogs that like to venture outdoors once in a while, a regular small pet door will probably do. But for large dogs, such as a collie and a labrador retriever, you’re probably going to need a larger, stronger model. When buying a dog door, give preference to the ones designed and made in Australia. Note that even if you have a security door with a diamond grill or stainless steel mesh, you can still find dog doors suitable for these kinds of doors.
Note that you may have to train your dog how to use the door. Some dogs take to the concept faster than others, so take it slowly and make it fun for him. Use your dog’s favorite treat to help with the training and consider working first through just the opening of the door with the flap removed.
Prepare for Messes
If your dog is still potty training, it may be a great idea to roll up your rugs for the first few months. This may sound like a hassle, but having to scrub puppy accidents out of your white rug isn’t fun as well. You may also want to cover other furniture surfaces. I suggest you place a blanket over your sofa and any accent chairs. Even if the fabrics are durable enough to withstand animal paws and claws, this is still a good way to keep the hair at bay.
Be Cautious With Plants
Keep in mind that some of your favorite plants may actually be dangerous to your pet’s health. Do good research to find out if the plants you have at home are pet-friendly. Even if your plants are safe for your pet, you may wish to style them so that they are high up.
Move Medications to a Safe Place
Your medications and even vitamins can be deadly for your dog. So, make sure to place them on a shelf up high. The same applies to toxic food. Dogs can’t handle all human foods. Chocolate, grapes, nuts, raisins and avocado are examples of foods that can be especially poisonous for dogs, so they must be kept out of reach.
Choose Cleaners Carefully
When you have a pet, you tend to clean more often than when you don’t. When cleaning, it’s important to pay attention to the products you use. Your dog is more exposed to cleaning products than you are because it spends its day closer to the ground where the dust particles containing the cleaning toxins are. Aside from leading burn to your dog’s feet, chemical cleaners can be quite harmful if ingested.
The great news is that nowadays you can find a range of eco-friendly cleaning products made with natural ingredients that actually get the job done. The easiest way to find out if the product is pet-friendly is by inspecting it carefully. That is because many products that are labeled as green and eco-friendly, still contain toxins for pets. So, make sure to research the different chemicals used on cleaning products to find out if they’re safe to use around your pets.
One harmful ingredient commonly found in cleaning products is ammonia. It’s is generally found in polishing and glass cleaners. It can be very dangerous once it’s spelled. That is because dogs have smaller lungers than we do, which makes them more vulnerable to this type of toxin. Bleach or chlorine is another common chemical commonly found in cleaning floors, toilets, and windows. If inhaled or swallowed by dogs, it can irritate their mucous membranes that would lead to coughing, breathing, and vomiting problems.
Aside from being safe for pets, eco-friendly cleaning products are also safe for you, your family, and the environment. Many of the harsh chemicals from traditional cleaning products end up in our waterways and soils, leading to damage to our ecosystem and upsetting the natural balance. Eco-friendly products are much more biodegradable and have far less of an impact on the environment, which means they help keep our homes clean, our family and pet safe and our conscience in peace.