Having a puppy is one of the most enjoyable experiences. They’re cute and cuddly, bundles of fun, and never fail to put a smile on your face. However, young puppies are still learning how to navigate the world and are curious about everything in it. This means they can get themselves in all kinds of mischief! They can easily injure themselves accidentally and damage your belongings with their curiosity. No owner can keep an eye on their puppy all day, so it’s important to have a puppy-proof house. This involves removing anything that could cause your dog harm. If you’ve never owned a dog before, you might not know where to start! But here we teach you how to puppy proof your home in 8 easy steps, so you can prevent accidents and damage.
Checklist for Puppy Proofing Your Home
Knowing how to puppy proof your house is essential for all dog owners – it keeps their pooches and their personal belongings safe. Our 8 simple steps are listed below but keep reading for a more detailed explanation of each point and why it’s crucial when puppy-proofing your home:
Create a safe space for your puppy
Use doggie gates and barriers
Hide all medications
Hide all cleaning products
Cover all trash bins
Choose pet-friendly houseplants
Hide and cover cords
Hide all sharp objects
1. Create a Safe Place for Your Puppy
All new puppies need a designated safe space they can be left in alone, especially if you’re leaving your pup for extended periods. Puppies will cause havoc if left to run around the house unwatched. They might start chewing belongings, knocking over furnishings, and potentially getting themselves into dangerous situations. A safe space limits the movement of your pup to prevent this while easing any stress and anxiety your puppy might feel when left alone. The size of the space needed depends on the space you have available in your home. If puppy-proofing apartment buildings, a padded crate with a doggie bed and food inside is a great option. Alternatively, people with space might designate an entire room for their puppy.
2. Use Doggie Gates and Barriers
Doggie dates play a huge role in puppy-proofing your home as they allow you to block off access to certain areas. This could be used to define your puppy’s safe space when you leave them home alone or to block off unsafe areas permanently. If you’re worried about your design aesthetic, you can purchase decorative gates which don’t compromise your home interior. Using pet barriers also helps to set boundaries while you’re training your pup. Therefore, these gates won’t need to be in place forever – a well-trained puppy will know not to enter a prohibited room even when a barrier isn’t blocking their way.
3. Hide all Medications
Many human medications are poisonous to dogs. Therefore, every puppy-proof house needs a safe and inaccessible place to store drugs. Remember that dogs have an incredible sense of smell, so putting any medication out of sight isn’t enough. Your medication needs to be locked away in a high cabinet to keep curious pups away and prevent poisoning accidents.
4. Hide all Cleaning Supplies
Medication is not the only dog poison lurking in your home. Cleaning products can also cause toxicity when ingested. This includes cleaning solutions, washing detergents, and other harsh chemicals. Keep all of these products in locked cabinets to avoid poisoning accidents. Child locks are dog-proof and a great and easy way to turn all your lower cabinets into safely-locking cupboards.
5. Cover All Trash Bins
Your trash can is one of the smelliest things in your home, and dogs navigate the world using their noses. Therefore, your trash bin or anything else with a distinctive smell is going to get your puppy’s attention. They eagerly try to explore the contents to discover what is inside. This is a nuisance for any homeowner – you’ve now got the contents of your trash can spread across the floor! However, it’s also a danger to your puppy. Garbage contains many indigestible items, spoiled food, and other toxic compounds. As such, ensure you have a tall bin with a lid to prevent curious pups from getting inside.
6. Choose Pet-Friendly Houseplants
Many owners don’t realize it, but many houseplants are toxic to dogs and can cause serious problems. Common examples include lilies, aloe vera, caladium, and ZZ plants. Try exchanging any dangerous houseplants with pet-safe alternatives, such as spider plants and Boston ferns. Alternatively, move any poisonous plants to prohibited areas or on top of high cabinets your puppy cannot reach.
7. Hide and Cover Cords
Our previous tips on how to puppy-proof your house have mostly been regarding toxic substances and keeping them out of reach. Yet many other dangers are lurking in our homes aside from poisonous substances. For puppies, trailing electrical cords are a major problem. Excitable puppies can easily trip over the cords or get themselves tangled, which could result in injury or, in worst cases, strangulation. Additionally, electrical wires are at your puppy’s level and thus a prime target for chewing. Not only will this damage your electrical appliances or chargers, but runs the risk of your pup getting electrocuted! Make sure you tuck wires behind furniture or run them along walls around doorways to keep them out of reach.
8. Hide all Sharp Objects
Knives, scissors, tools, or anything else pointy can be dangerous if your puppy gets its paws on them. Therefore, puppy-proofing your home requires you to ensure all these sharp objects are inaccessible. Keep them off the floors and counters and put them firmly in puppy-proof drawers your dog cannot gain access to.
Knowing how to puppy-proof your home ahead of your latest arrival is essential. Young puppies are dependent on their owners for everything, so you need to prepare your home as you would if you had a young child running around. Use this puppy-proofing guide to ensure you don’t miss anything. Your pup’s safety is a primary concern, so ensure you live up to your responsibility and keep your puppy (and your home) safe!