The Secret Strife of Pets
62% of Australians have furry pals in the home, but how do we protect our newly renovated homes?
Unconditional love – that’s why we put up with hair, tracks of mud from outside and their various smells. Our furry friends are like children in so many ways – we take endless pictures of them, dress them up, talk to them like they’re human. But, like children, no matter how much we teach them – things will get damaged.
That can be problematic when you just finished a major upgrade to your home and everything looks so shiny and new. There are ways to minimise damage and extend the life of your home; just follow these steps.
While planning your renovation or build, it’s worth considering the flooring that your pets are tapping, running and sliding around on. Carpet is a difficult choice as malting dogs get their fur stuck in as-well-as other… Accidents shall we say. Laminate and wood flooring are far safer choices as they’re easier to clean. However, you need to keep your pet’s nails trimmed regularly; the long sharp claws are likely to scratch wood flooring.
The paint in high traffic areas or tight corners can quickly get scuffed, more visible with bright colours. Consider darker tones or wallpaper in these areas, or you’ll be decorating more often than you’d like! Also available are stain-resistant paint varieties than can be easily wiped down after your pet has wiped down on your wall.
Screening materials are a pet’s favourite scratching, gnawing and chewing toy. Invest in a heavy-duty, almost military-grade material that will stop your furry children from destroying it.
Rugs should be equipped with non-slip underlay to keep rugs in position, to avoid you endlessly moving them back into place.
Be careful when choosing materials for your furnishings. Leather can scratch easily, whereas synthetics are both durable and easy to clean. Consider loose slipcovers on your furniture that can be removed like socks, thrown in the wash and replaced quickly. Alternatively, you can simply throw a blanket or sheet over furniture until you find a permanent solution.
As much as we talk to them like kids, let’s not forget they are animals. They need plenty of exercise and fun, which means plenty of long walks with dogs or ledges for cats to climb.
Scratching and chewing are healthy habits for pets; bad news for your vintage mahogany wardrobe. Give your pets a scratch outlet with a scratching post or a few chew toys. If the scratching/vandalising persists, spray vinegar (dogs) or lemon (cats) onto furnishings, they’ll avoid it like vampires avoid garlic.
Dogs used to be wild and roam free in the outdoors, so it’s in their DNA to crave fresh air and adventure. Your garden is a one-stop-shop for all things adventurous. Defining boundaries with a pet means the outdoors is play and the indoors is a sanctum. Be sure to dog-proof the garden to ensure it doesn’t wander into neighbours’ space or worse, a car.