Just like preparing your home for a new baby, new dog parents should prepare their home for their four-legged addition, too. Making sure your home is safe and comfortable for your new family member is key to transitioning your pup into your home and helping them thrive once they’re there – and that means more preparation than simply buying a dog bed and some treats.
Kitchens and Bathrooms
The first and easiest step in dog-proofing your home is to keep all harmful items out of reach of your dog: medications, cleaning supplies, laundry detergent, and anything else they could get into should be tucked away in cabinets or high up on shelves. That includes food – even if the food itself isn’t harmful, the wrapper could be. Your trash should also be covered or latched inside a cabinet so your dog doesn’t have access to it.
Installing childproof latches can help protect those items at levels your dog has access to but shouldn’t be able to get into. They are easy enough for you to get past but make it impossible for Fido’s paws to pry open the door. As you walk around the room, make sure you’re on the lookout for any small nooks and crannies that your dog could get stuck in and block them off, including behind washer/dryer units and cabinet holes.
If wires and cords are exposed, coil them up and put them out of reach so there is no chewing, tangling, or tripping happening while you’re away. Make sure that all children’s toys, house plants, knick-knacks and the like are put away or out of reach as well. It’s no secret that dogs love to chew, so keeping anything they may like to chomp on out of their way is important so they don’t choke and your possessions remain intact.
Like in kitchens and bathrooms, make sure that there aren’t any nooks and crannies your dog could get stuck in and make sure that all heating/air vents are covered. Hide and seek can be fun, but if Fido can’t get out of his hiding spot, that becomes a problem.
Any pieces of clothing you want to keep intact should be put away, as buttons and drawstrings can be tempting things to play with for pups and cause major problems if swallowed. Medications, lotions, cosmetics, or any other chemical or harmful items should be put away or kept out of accessible surfaces like your nightstand or low tables.
And of course, always be on the lookout for paws, noses, and tails when you shut doors behind you or scoot your chairs!