Don’t be fooled by puppy-dog eyes or a gentle purr; having a dog or a cat is a huge responsibility. The truth of the matter is pets won’t be cute all the time and you won’t always have the biggest energy to engage. They’ll bite and scratch your furniture; they’ll pee or poop anywhere without proper potty training; they’ll shed fur everywhere and; demand your attention even when you’re pressured at work. It is anything but child’s play and more so if you live in a city with limited space.
But once those setbacks are dealt with, there’s nothing more rewarding than living your years with a best friend by your side and a dog or a cat who probably loves you more than treats. There are several ways on how you could create a happy environment for your pet as well as a hassle-free space for the busy adult that you are. Just tick off all the boxes on our checklist to start transforming your urban home into pet-friendly heaven.
1. Use multi-purpose furniture and install storage units as decor
Once you bring a pet home, tailoring your space needs thorough planning. You should consider where the pet beds, a feeding station, and a potty area will go---all while leaving an ample area for you and your pet to move around for play or work.
The trick of the trade-in saving space is to buy furniture for multiple purposes. Flexispot has a number of furniture that are aesthetically pleasing and at the same time functional. The brand’s desk bike can be both gym equipment and a chair and just occupy one spot. It also has a mobile file cabinet in its catalog that could serve as a table and storage for important files or things that need to be within your reach. Flexispot also offers an under desk drawer that can provide extra storage without taking additional floor space. It can be mounted on any desk or surface you deem fit. Single or dual monitor mounts could save even more precious floor area. You could also look for a sofa bed that could be a couch during the day and be extended to a bed at night.
2. Use washable upholstery and fabric toys as teethers
When you have a pet in your home, it’s easy to identify who the culprit is when a stain, scratches, tiny bites, urine, or feces show up. The couch or the bed is usually where accidents happen but you could save your furniture by using washable upholstery.
Leather, microfiber, denim, canvas, and outdoor textiles—anything with a tight weave is a pet-friendly fabric. You could easily suck pet hair from leather using a vacuum but if you’re looking for a texture that doesn’t show obvious scratch marks, microfiber is another choice. Denim is easy to clean using just mild soap and water but for a more eco-friendly option, the canvas is a durable cotton fabric that makes great slipcovers. Outdoor fabrics are usually moisture-proof, stain and odor-resistant. Opt for dark colors so it’s easy to hide stains.
For teething puppies and kittens, you may opt for fabric toys instead of the conventional teethers for a more aesthetic look. You wouldn’t need to hide and store the teethers somewhere else because the fabric toys could take a permanent seat in your sofa and not ruin the aesthetic of your living room.
3. Make sure fragiles (glass, ceramics, etc) are not within your pet’s reach and secure the trash bin to a safe area
Dogs and cats love to play around so most of the time, they knock off anything that stands in their way. This doesn’t give you the authority to yell because they simply don’t know what wrong they have done. Accidents could be avoided by making sure fragile ones are not within the reach of the pet and that the trash bin is secured to a safe corner. Floating shelves are a stylish way to save floor space as well as to put decor---such as picture frames, vases, and pots---on an elevated surface. FlexiSpot’s floating shelves are sturdy, spacious, and easy to install.
The trash bin must also be secured to a safe side and must not be accessible to your pet. It usually attracts them because of its smell from the variety of items thrown inside. These are toxic for pets so better use a locking trash can to ensure the safety of your pet.
4. Elevate your pet’s feeding station
Research has proven that an elevated food bowl reaps benefits for most pets. It will help improve their posture and give them extra comfort while eating because they wouldn’t need to bend over to reach for their food or drink their water. Elevated pet bowls are also said to help with swallowing and digestion because it keeps pets from lying down while they finish eating or drinking. Moreover, it keeps the feeding area clean and the bowls stay in place. In most instances, pets won’t make a mess while eating because the elevated bowls could not be knocked over.
According to Neater Pets, pick the perfect bowl for your pet by measuring it by its shoulders to the ground then subtract around 3 to 6 inches to get the ideal height of the bowl that is proportionate with your dog’s size.
5. Use standing desks and metal-legged tables to avoid pet scratches
Avoid pet scratches on your desk by using tables with metal legs. FlexiSpot has the perfect adjustable standing desk that is made with powder-coated steel tubing. It could be lifted to your desired height without losing its stability. Its desktop is made of bamboo that is both moisture and scratch-proof. It’s thin and sleek and doesn’t take up much space. Plus it helps that using a standing desk could make you more productive with work because of heightened alertness and focus for the task at hand.
6. Be wary of toxic indoor plants and keep electrical cords away from your pet
There are many health hazards to avoid when you have a pet at home and one of these is unfortunately indoor plants. If you love to grow greens, you would have to say goodbye to lilies, aloe vera, ivy, jade, dumb cane, elephant ear, potohos or Devil’s Ivy, and ZZ plant, some of the common house plants that are dangerous for pets.
Another safety precaution is to make sure that electrical cords are not within your pet’s naughty hands and feet that may play with it and chew on electricity. FlexiSpot has a cable management kit organizer set that has self-adhesive cable ties which are durable and sticky. You could also install Flexispot’s Cable Management Tray under your work desk to avoid tangled cords, allow air to flow openly, and keep the cords away from dust. Moreover, it’s easy to mount on any desk edge.
7. Give your pets access to the windows for some much-needed sunshine
Because of the COVID-19 situation, walking dogs on the street has become a rare sight but it doesn’t change the fact that pets still need their dose of Vitamin D as much as humans do. After all, Vitamin D increases amounts of calcium in pets that ensures healthy bones and prevents diseases.
Make sure your cat or dog can hang out by the windows comfortably without any accidents happening. Prepare a seat by the window so your cat or dog can chill there while getting sunkissed and enjoying a view of the outside.
8. Do not overlook flooring and add rugs to make your place more comfortable for a pet
Out of everything you could find at home, flooring is the most susceptible to pet accidents. There are many pet-friendly options such as bamboo, engineered hardwood, cork, vinyl, tile, or stone. Tile and stones are both stain-resistant and easy to clean. According to Floor Critics, this floor type is very forgiving and age-friendly that could work well for both newborns who are just learning to potty train or older dogs who already have bowel control problems. Cork is another good choice because it is microbial, resembles hardwood, and is affordable. Durable, scratch and water-resistant options also include bamboo and luxury vinyl flooring.
To keep the floor clean even if you and your pet go outside, remember to add slip-free rugs and mats. Flexispot has specialized mats that not only keep dirt away from the floor, it also has ergonomic, anti-fatigue options that are perfect for the busy you.
There is no perfect space and accidents are still bound to happen. But once you have made these changes to prioritize your pet’s happiness and balance it with practicality as to what you could and not give, the feeling of being a pet parent is priceless. Saying yes to a dog, a cat, or any other pet is one of the best decisions you could ever make in your life. It molds you to become responsible, teaches you to be more caring and understanding, and builds a relationship with your future best friend of a lifetime.