Home Design 101: Making Your Home Pet-Friendly

home design

You’d agree that our four-legged friends are capable of getting themselves into as much trouble as kids. How do you then prevent curiosity to get the better of them?  

May sound silly but a “puppy’s eye-view” of things is the best way to know and inspect areas that little Tommy can access. Get down on all fours. Start thinking like your pet! You can start off by looking out for these: 

High-Rise Syndrome

The term “High-Rise Syndrome” was coined by veterinarians after reports of cats falling off high places were on a frightening rise. Cats have a natural fondness for heights. Window bars and grills are not adequate protection and can be deceiving to the human eye. A safer option any day would be to mesh your windows and low balconies. Don’t forget to mesh your staircases while you are at it to prevent smaller pets from rolling down or jump out of excitement. 

Be wary of swinging doors 

Swinging doors are more dangerous than you think. Avoid them. If you already have one at home, use a heavy door stopper that your pet cannot navigate or play with. 

Dangling wires have danger written all over

Wires pose entanglement and electrocution hazards. Put away trailing cables and wires from lamps, TVs, stereos and the like behind furniture. You could consider covering your cables with a widely available thick cable protector to make them chew-proof. 

Know what plants to keep at home 

House Plants Expert has released a list of common household plants that could be potentially poisonous to your furballs. While lilys can cause severe kidney problems in cats, aloe vera is known to induce vomiting and diarrhoea in dogs on ingestion. Do your research or talk to the vet before you decide on what to decorate your house with. Keep the greenery out of reach if you must bring them indoors.

Trash the trash 

Pets knocking over the trash is a common phenomenon. Absolutely no low-lying dustbins, unless you want old food and tissues strewn across the floor. Trade them for tall, pedal lid trash cans that your pet would find difficult to topple or stick their nose into. Sprinkling baking soda over the trash will mask the smell too. Don’t devalue this step because what we consider harmless fruit seeds, contain natural contaminants that can result in cyanide poisoning. For example, grapes and raisins are reasons for kidney failure in animals while nutmeg can acutely affect their central nervous system.


Keeping birdcages away from windows protects them from the heat of the sun as well as your neighbour’s cat. Likewise, direct sunlight is bad for fish tanks – too much heat contributes to the formation of algae that turns water green and polluted.

The higher, the better 

You are just one tail wag away from a mishap. Candles, glassware and anything that sits too low are set up for break-a-ville. Likewise, detergents and medicines all need to be stacked up on higher shelves or in cupboards with childproof latches. 

Give them personal space

And finally. Animals love cozy, small spaces that they can curl into. A space they know is theirs’. If it is well-equipped with a comfy bed, water, food and their favourite toys, your furry friend would seldom find the need to venture into unknown territories, rendering you assured always. 

Garima Ghosh
About Garima Ghosh 90 Articles
When I'm not writing on cocktail dressing etiquette or why you need a popsocket in your life, I'm on the hunt for the latest board games in the market.