Are you a proud new pet parent? Before you bring that precious pet home, you should be a responsible pet parent and pet proof your home. This will not only keep your new furry friend protected but it will also save you time and work in the weeks and months to come.
I’m always saddened to hear about a new pet being returned because the new owner couldn’t handle them for some reason. I think one of the reasons that pets are often returned relates directly to their lack of preparedness. Not unlike bringing a new baby home from the hospital, bringing a new pet home also requires household changes and adjustments so that both you and your furry friend can start off on the right paw.
Where Do You Keep The Chemicals & Toxic Foods
One of the first things to address is the where you store your chemicals such as cleaners. Just like children, animals are curious and often get into mischief. Remove these items from underneath your bathroom and kitchen sinks and put them into a cabinet with a child-proof or pet proof lock. It’s always a good idea to switch to all natural or green products that are not only good for the environment but not harmful to your children or your pets.
Don’t Forget To Stock Up
Before bringing home your new pet, you need to think ahead and plan for potty accidents. Because I promise you there will be accidents for a while until you get them completely house trained. It’s also likely they may vomit some until they adjust to their new diet and environment.
You will definitely want to get a pet stain and odor remover that is an enzyme cleaner because this type of cleaner actually eliminates the urine odor, where other cleaners just cover it up. It also will help keep your dog from peeing over and over in the same area.
Now if you are a gagger or have a really weak stomach, no worries. There are handy little carpet cleaners made just for pet messes. These little pet carpet cleaner machines can even just be left sit on the spot and they do all of the work for you like the Spotbot Pet Compact Deep Cleaner! How much easier could it be that to just sit it on the spot and it does all the dirty work. If I were bringing a new puppy home, it’s seriously a purchase I would make.
What To Look For & Where
So you’re ready to pet proof but where should you begin? Try getting down on your pets level. Seriously, get down on the floor and start looking around. You’ll get a whole new perspective from their angle. You’ll see thing people have dropped such as money, medications, candy, food wrappers, children’s toys, cords etc. all potential hazards for your pet. Also look for spaces that need to be closed off so that a small pet can’t crawl in and get lost or stuck.
Potty training can be a trying time in pet parenting but it’s important that you maintain your patience and your temper. You need to expect accidents and often repeated accidents. Never react by screaming at the animal or striking the animal. This only serves to tell your new pet that they are not supposed to potty in front of you. So the next time, they will potty in private, say behind the couch or in your bedroom.
Instead, change the tone of your voice and firmly say “NO!” Then pick them up and take them outside to the area you want them to use to potty. Use the same place so they start associating that area with using the bathroom. If they do seem to understand why you are taking them to the same place each time, then pick up some of their potty and poop mess with gloves and paper towels and take it out to the bathroom spot and leave it there. Make sure that your dog sniffs this but do not rub their nose in it. This will help the dog better understand that this is their potty spot. Remember to praise them and even reward them with a small treat for having a successful outdoor potty.
Don’t Forget The Toys
Dogs are natural chewers and rely on chewing to relieve anxiety and as a form of relaxation and play. It’s really important to always choose quality toys and chew bones and give your dog the chance to chew everyday. By keeping toys and chew bones available, you are giving them an alternative to chewing on your furniture or shoes.
Keep Shedding Tools On Hands-free
There are multiple ways to clean up the hair your dog sheds but there a couple of things I think work better than others. First of all, keep your dog brushed regularly. This will help more than anything. Vacuum more often, like you had to do when your kids were little. This helps keep up with the shedding and doesn’t allow it to get out of hand. The other item that I absolutely love is the new Pledge Fabric Sweeper which picks up hair off of your couch and fabric. Just rub it side to side and it picks up the hair and stores it in a chamber for disposal. Super easy! They say it’s comparable to 145 of those sticky sheets. I think it’s amazing little gadget and I love watching the hair ball collect in the chamber – lol!
No Toilets Allowed
Always keep your toilet lid shut and/or your bathroom door closed. The chemicals you use to clean your toilet will make your pet sick and will poison them over time. Pets love to drink out of the toilet because the water is fresh and cool, so keep those lids shut!
Start Training From Day One
Too many pet parents go into pet ownership without recognizing the need to train their new pet. There is nothing more important that the need to teach their pet commands and how to obey when they bring them home. Not only does this teach manners but it is a safety issue. Poorly trained animals are often the reason pets are returned or taken to shelters. So do your research or hire a trainer and learn with your dog. It will make your dog and you much happier.
The most important thing when you pet proof your home is to do it before you bring your furry friend home. Beyond that, just enjoy your new pet and love them loads!