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The imminent arrival of a new four-legged member of the family is undoubtedly an exciting time, but it also means a great deal of planning in order to ensure your home is dog-friendly from top to bottom. While you’re getting excited about doggy beds and delicious canine snacks, what about the practicalities of adapting your home with your furry friend in mind?
Whether you’re ultra-organized or a self-confessed last-minute panicker, if you’re a soon-to-be dog owner, we want to help. Here, our friends from Trendy Floors are providing you with some practical home design updates to ensure your new dog feels right at home from day one.
Embrace open-plan spaces
One of the best things you can offer your new pooch is space – so if you’re fortunate enough to be able to work with an open-plan design, this is a great way to give your dog the freedom they need to roam around at leisure, rather than being confined by cramped spaces.
To start with, considering rearranging your furniture to create more dog-friendly rooms. Whether this is pushing sofas against walls or mounting TVs to free up floor space, not only will you be giving your four-legged friend the room they need to play, but you’ll also be protecting your furniture and accessories in the process.
With the walls themselves framing the entire space, you’ll want to think smart here, too. The textures you choose will undoubtedly become magnets for sticky paws if you’re not careful, so try to avoid textured wallpaper where possible. If it’s feasible, opt for satin or gloss paints in dark shades to prevent any dirty marks showing up.
Choose practical upholstery options
One of the most difficult tasks facing dog owners is how to keep your home looking and smelling clean – and a big part of this lies in the types of furniture you decide on. For example, on a leather sofa you’ll easily be able to wipe away spills and stains, while a fabric sofa won’t be as easy to maintain.
Of course, your furniture choices will be very much led by budget, so if switching large items is too costly a consideration, instead you can look to cover them with throws and blankets. It’s best to choose colors that match your pet’s fur, as this way they won’t immediately show up every strand of hair – but be prepared that they will still need regularly washing to prevent any smells.
Exposed wood is best avoided as it’s too tempting for growing teeth, so if you’re thinking of furnishing a room with tables or sideboards, you might want to instead consider metal options. This way, your furniture will be safe from scratch and bite marks and still provide all of the practicality you need.
Invest in easy-to-clean flooring
From accidents while you train them up to muddy paw prints once they find their feet, try as you might to avoid marks on your flooring, the sooner you accept these as inevitabilities the better. So, when considering ways to make your dog feel right at home without the need to clean several times a day, you should start with your flooring.
While carpet is undoubtedly a cozy option, for those with pets, it’s anything but practical – nor is it cool underfoot during the warmer months. By opting for something like cool tiles or wipe-clean LVT flooring, you can ensure your home maintains its aesthetic appeal, while still being a space that’s primed to house your new furry friend.
Again, budget will be a factor here. But while shelling out for new flooring might seem like an unnecessary expense, it will be far cheaper than having to replace carpet when it becomes worn or damaged from too many accidents or when your pooch simply can’t resist picking at stray strands!
Make the outdoors accessible
Whether you have a small yard or an expansive garden, allowing your dog to be able to stretch their legs is a big part of your responsibility as a pet owner. So, whether your outdoor space is to the front or the rear of your property, you’ll need to make sure it’s as accessible as possible to your pet.
With your rooms already decluttered, making a clear path to the garden should be easy. Just make sure you remove any valuables that could be knocked over or broken on their dash outside for the bathroom or in their excitement to play fetch with you on the lawn.
In terms of the garden itself, it’s a good idea to pet-proof this space ahead of their arrival. This would involve tidying away any dangerous gardening tools and harmful sprays – basically anything your pup will be keen to investigate! You should also take the time to make sure fences and gates are secure, so your dog can’t escape the safe confines of your backyard.
Bringing a dog into your home can provide you with so much joy. And with just a few small updates, you can ensure they get their little paws under the table from the get-go.
About the Author: Alex Jones is a content creator for Trendy Floors, the home of discount flooring products with all the hallmarks of luxury – from affordable luxury vinyl tile to engineered parquet.