Are you a pet lover? Whether your family includes beloved dogs, cats, birds, lizards, snakes, or something more exotic, your home design should look after their needs too. How might you do just that when planning your house layout? Here are a few things to include.
1. Pet Stations
Pets, like kids, often require a lot of stuff. Most pet owners tend to corral pet paraphernalia into one or two convenient locations. Turn these into pet stations with all the accouterments necessary. Install organization for leashes, toys, and outdoor gear. Add a pet washing station near the back door. And create a preplanned pet feeding area and pantry in your kitchen.
2. Extra Space
Depending on the pet, you may need to factor in extra space in certain rooms. Anyone with large dogs, for example, may need extra free space in well-trafficked rooms for kennels, large beds, or just dogs chilling on the rug. Have a lizard, snake, or bird? Where will it live? Will it need larger spaces as it grows? Where will you place its home? Think ahead so the whole family has enough room.
3. Pet Comfort
Older dogs and cats may need additional efforts to keep them comfortable. You may want to reduce elevation changes, for instance, or place the master bedroom on the main floor if your beloved pet can't climb the stairs. Some people may need to plan for pet ramps and other helpful furnishings. And is your bedroom big enough to support a bed that everyone can fit on?
4. Safety Features
Safety should always come first in home design. And that includes pet safety. Wandering animals — from dogs or cats to birds and rodents — deserve a safe space where they won't get stuck in tight angles, encounter sharp edges that could injure them, or eat potentially toxic materials. And be sure you protect everyone from an unexpected fall.
Finally, how can you add features that will entertain and enrich pets' lives? Devoted pet owners may include pet entrances from the house to a safe area of the yard or even pet holes for them to explore between rooms. Add built-in cat climbing areas on walls and include high places for them to chill. What about a catio where cats, lizards, or others can hang out safely outside? Have fun and be creative.
Where to Start
Talk to a qualified home designer today about your pets' unique needs and interests. With their help, you can ensure a safe, comfortable, enjoyable, and organized space for both two-legged and four-legged family members.
For more information about home design, contact a local professional.