Because of the strong bond we share with our dogs, many dog owners consider their dogs as far more than pets — and instead treat them as if they were family. We love sharing everything with our four-legged companions and do our best to make their lives with us as comfortable and fun as possible. To do that, many dog owners consider making dog-friendly home renovations to pamper their pets.
Understand your dog’s needs
While many dog parents may not realize it, there are many dangers for their dogs both in and out of their homes. Soaps and other cleansers that many of us use without a second thought can contain chemicals that are incredibly harmful to dogs, many of which can even cause cancer if overexposed.
Like people, all dogs are different in their specific needs. While care for each pup will be unique, there are some guidelines to follow depending on your dog’s breed. Working dogs will almost always need far more time exercising than companion breeds in order to maintain a healthy weight. Large and small breeds will also differ wildly when it comes to diet, and grooming is different between short and long coats.
If you’ve given a home to a wonderful senior dog, you’ll find that their needs are quite different than their younger counterparts as well. While you’ll still have to regulate their diet and exercise, you will also have to keep in mind that senior dogs require much more rest and need to be comfortable throughout the day. Understanding your dog’s unique needs — young or old, big or small — is the first step to creating an environment in which they will thrive.
Make your yard safe and fun
While you should be mindful of the chemicals you’re putting on your lawn that may negatively affect your dog, there are other outdoor dangers you should avoid. Outdoor pests like foxes, raccoons, and rodents can often harbor the bacterial disease leptospirosis, which can not only lead to serious health complications for your pet but can spread to humans as well. Keeping your lawn and any shrubbery well maintained reduces the likelihood that these pests will make a home in your yard, making it safe for your dog to run around to their heart’s content.
When modifying your yard with your dog in mind, there are plenty of landscaping dos and don’ts that you should consider before breaking out the shovel. Develop a plan beforehand that you can realistically execute within your budget to avoid any stoppages in the landscaping that would prevent your furry friend from using the yard for any longer than they would have to. When considering what plants to use, definitely lean towards heartier plants that can withstand your dog’s running and rummaging, but keep in mind what the yard will look like at maturity. After all, it is your lawn too!
After you’ve designed a perfect outdoor area that both you and your dog can enjoy, there is still much more you can do to make it even more pleasing to your pooch. If you do happen to have a senior dog, install pet-friendly ramps on your stairs to make their access to the lawn much easier. For dogs of all sizes and ages, building or purchasing a more luxurious version of a dog house with amenities like heated floors and built-in water bowls is sure to make any dog happy.
Easy dog-friendly home renovations
Making your home more dog-friendly can be as easy, or as difficult, as you’d like to make it. Whether you’re only willing to invest in some dog-specific products to make their lives easier or you’re leaning fully into home improvement and taking out a loan to remodel your home, the sky’s the limit when it comes to making your home a dog paradise. Upgrading your home to be more amenable to your four-legged friend takes time and money, but it’s well worth it when you see your happy pooch playing in it.
Changing up your shared living space can be as simple as purchasing some pet stairs to help small or elderly dogs access areas that would otherwise be off-limits. Conversely, you can go all out and implement home upgrades like dog-specific showering areas, built-in water, and food bowls in your cabinetry, or dedicated cubby holes for their dog beds. Whether you’re simply trying to make your dog’s life easier or pamper them beyond belief, there are nearly endless options at your disposal.
Though it may be tempting to go all out for your dog and completely renovate your home to cater to their every need, the cost of doing so should always be kept in mind. Going into debt to make your furry friend happier might not be the wisest of ideas, but many of the improvements that can be made are possible to do on one’s own. Even then, it is important to remember that DIY projects can often lead to injury, especially those involving the use of power tools like a cordless drill. Petting your pooch is a lot harder with a few missing fingers!
At the end of the day, even if you do everything in your power (and your budget) to make your dog happy, they will always be happiest with you. So whether you go big or simply purchase some items that make your dog’s life easier, they will appreciate the extra love. As long as you and your dog are together, they will be as happy as can be. Everything else is just a cherry on top.
– Noah Rue