4 ideas to make your new home pet friendly

Date Monday, 29 February 2016 12:00 AM

When  building a new home, you need to conside every member of the family during the design phase. For example, creating engaging play areas for the children, while mum and dad might enjoy an alfresco dining space to entertain visitors. However what about your pets?

In Australia, we have a close relationship with our furry and feathered friends. In fact, according to the RSPCA there are around 33 million pets in the country with around 63 per cent of Australian households owning pets. With almost 4 in 10 (39 per cent) homes having a canine, companion dogs are by far the most popular pet followed by cats (29 per cent). 

Around 63 per cent of Australian households own pets.

Regardless of the type of pet in your family, it's vital that you take steps to make your new home pet-friendly. This will not only protect your house from inquisitive wet noses and scratches, but can also help your furry friend become more comfortable in a new and unfamiliar environment.

Here are a few ideas to help you create a safe environment for your pets:

1. Fencing

If you have an outdoor dog or a particularly curious cat one of the first safety features you might want to consider for your new home is a sturdy fence. This is particularly important if you live near a busy main road, or if there are other pets in the area who may not take kindly to a new neighbour.

There's a plethora of materials and styles you can choose for your fence to ensure it's in line with the home's overarching style. Your local home builder will be able to provide you with more advice.

2. Cleaning

As any pet owner knows having a cat or dog in the family can be a messy affair. Between hair shedding, muddy explorations and slobbery tongues trying to keep the home in pristine condition can sometimes feel like a full time job in its own right.

Building a new home gives you the opportunity to design a pet-friendly space that will allow you to minimise the amount of time you spend on cleaning. For example Yourmortgage.com.au suggested opting for linoleum, wooden floors or tiles in heavy pet traffic zones such as the kitchen, dining room and living spaces to keep these areas free of hair and easier to clean.

Wooden floors make it a breeze to clean up after curious pets.Wooden floors make it a breeze to clean up after curious pets.

3. Sleeping spaces

If space is at a premium in your new home or you simply want a way to reduce the impact your pets' belongings have on the look of the house, it's time to get creative. Domain explains that you can maximise the space available to you by incorporating pet beds into your regular furniture.

Coffee tables with hollowed out cavities for instance may make the perfect sleeping spot for a smaller dog, while cat-accessible cabinets are a visually appealing way to keep litter trays out of sight and out of mind.

Alternatively you may want to consider allocating a special sleeping space in an infrequently used room such as the laundry or dedicating a quiet corner of the living room to your pet.

4. Splurge on your pet

Animal lovers may want to take things one step further and customise the design of their entire home to be more appealing to their four legged family members. 

The Wall Street Journal noted some exceptional examples of this including a New York townhouse that featured an entire room dedicated to being a 'doggy eating and dressing station', an apartment with integrated ladders and catwalks and purpose-built dog-washing spaces.

Of course you don't need to spend as much as these clients to design a home that your animal companion will love. Rather it's a matter of considering the needs of your pets and creating an environment that will suit both you and them.

- See more at: http://www.gjgardner.com.au/gj-advisor/4-ideas-to-make-your-new-home-pet-friendly-78.aspx#sthash.ClvAqq4l.dpuf

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