Pet Proofing 101: How to Protect Your Stuff + Furry Friends

In The Secret Life of Pets, things go a little haywire as soon as the humans leave. Dogs escape out the window, art falls from the walls and plates crash to the floor. Though your pets may not throw a rager like Leonard the poodle did, chances are they’ve brought about their fair share of destruction in your home.

To keep your dog from destroying your pillows or your cat from scratching up the couch, you need to do some prep work. By pet-proofing your home, you can protect your four-legged friends and all your favorite belongings with ease. So if you’re haunted by the memories of your dog destroying your favorite piece of jewelry as a puppy, have no fear. Pet proofing (and jewelry insurance) are here to help.

Below, we break down how to pet proof every part of your home, from the bathroom to the backyard — looking for tips dedicated to your particular pet’s needs? We’ve got you covered with pet-proofing ideas for pets of all ages and energy levels. If you’re already a pet-proofing pro, take your home to the next level with these home upgrades for pets.

How to pet proof your home

When you look at your home, you may not see many opportunities for pet injury or damage. But at your pet’s level, your home is a jungle gym of things to chew, scratch and ruin. For instance, a table leg can quickly become a chew toy or a brand-new rug could be mistaken for a litter box. To keep even your most high-energy pet safe and comfortable, pet proofing every room is a must (after you’ve used spring cleaning apps to deep clean your home, of course).

Living room

Though you may spend the most time cuddling and playing with your pet in the living room, your pet can still get into some mischief. After all, just one distracted moment can mean a damaged piece of furniture or an injured pet. Give yourself some peace of mind while your pet plays by implementing these pet-proofing steps.

  • Add anti-scratch tape to the couch to discourage scratching
  • Cover electrical cords to keep chewers away
  • Cover HVAC vents
  • Move or block exercise equipment to prevent injuries
  • Place remote controls on a high shelf
    • Pro tip: Any small decor or knick-knacks should be put away or moved to a high area
  • Put down pee pads or water repellent carpeting for accidents
  • Put kids’ toys away to avoid choking hazards

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