Pet Proof Your Apartment

The joys of having unpacked all of your belongings is a cause for celebration. But, before settling completely into your new home, make sure to first take the final step in completing your move- pet proofing your home. By safely removing all possible dangers to your pet, you will both be able to relax and enjoy your new Dallas apartment.

Get Down On Their Eye Level

The best way to spot potential hazards is to drop down on your knees and walk around at your pet’s eye level. Seeing the world from their point of view will allow you to see what your pet sees: wires and loose connections, strings hanging from curtains, blind cords dangling within reach, small objects on the floor that have perhaps rolled under the furniture, cabinet doors that are not closing all the way, plants that are reachable, etc. Animals are adventurous and curious creatures by nature and many times their favorite way to explore and experience a new object or item is by putting it in their mouth. A good rule of thumb is....if it could harm a human baby to put that object in their mouth and potentially swallow it, then it could also harm your pet and should be put out of reach.

Use Baby Safety Materials

Due to curiosity and playfulness, cats and dogs both will try to venture into any available cabinets, closets, or drawers. Anything that can open is a temptation. That's why it is a good idea to invest in child-proof locks and baby gates to block access to stairways, rooms with too many dangerous items or breakables, cabinets or closets with medicines or cleaning supplies, pantries, and closets (shoes and clothes may be chewed up and shoe laces can be swallowed).

Use Furniture Repellent

It is common for renters who are moving into an apartment to bring with them some new items of furniture that they got for the new apartment. Since pets often see furniture as, not just something to sit and lay on, but also their personal scratch and chew toys, you might benefit from trying pet repellent for your furniture. It is best to have the spray already on hand the very first time your pet sees the furniture so that it learns from the very beginning when something is off limits. The spray might come in handy for another reason too.....sometimes moving into a new environment causes your pet to temporarily revert back to old bad habits or they suddenly start new ones, such as marking furniture or scratching it. Keep the can of spray on hand so that the moment you first notice such behavior you can immediately start using the repellent to keep them away from the furniture until things calm down, the stress of the move is over, and they are acting more like themselves again. Be sure to only buy a repellent that is non-harmful for your pet, preferably one of the many brands that offers a natural spray. Although you might have certain areas or items off limits for your pet, be sure there is enough space available where your cat or dog can safely sleep, play, eat and enjoy personal space. Also, never spray the repellent on your pet! They can harm your pet's eyes. Also, later they might lick it off their fur and swallow the spray, which would be toxic. They are not designed for this purpose, but are only for the use of spraying on your furniture.

Place Expensive or Special Items Out of Reach

Remember that special heirloom you inherited? Or that expensive gift your mom bought you? Keep in mind that living with pets is like living with children. They’ll want to touch, chew, sniff, and play with everything they see. They don't consider sentimental value or price. So make sure you place these items out of your pet’s sight and reach. Keep in mind that dogs and cats can normally jump at least twice their size. Cats can not only jump but also climb.

Safety, Safety, Safety

Many Foods, drinks, all medications, candy, cleaning supplies, lotions and cosmetics, wrappers, coins, laundry supplies, plants, office supplies, craft and sewing supplies, and electronics all pose a hazard to your pet. With dogs, anything that can fit in their mouth can be a hazard, from your socks, to keys to buttons. They often swallow these items and later have to have them surgically removed. Try to think like your pet when pet-proofing your new home. Animals are curious, and moving into a new home will make them want to explore. Give your pet plenty of toys, snacks, fresh water, food, comfortable bedding, space for running and playtime to keep them busy, happy, content and eventually sleepy. For more detailed information about items, foods and objects that can be very dangerous to your pet, check out the article on my website “Poisonous Plants, Harmful Objects & Foods To Keep Away From Your Pets”.

Follow these tips for pet proofing your apartment and your new rental home can be a safe haven for all your family members, even the ones with body fur (and I don't mean your husband).


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