If you have an indoor pet, you want them to move freely around the home. That includes spending time in the kitchen, especially when you head there. But before allowing your pup or cat to access the kitchen, you should make it pet-proof. Follow this guide to ensure the space is safe for your pet!
Dogs and Cats in the Kitchen
According to statistics, over 38% of US households have a dog, and 25% own a cat. They are the most popular companion animals, and many consider them family members. If your pet is allowed in the living room or other areas, why wouldn't you let them in the kitchen?
Although it could seem like any other room, kitchens have potential hazards that could harm your pet. You can’t pay attention to your pup or kitten every second, and that’s why pet-proofing becomes imperative.
Use Dog-Proof Kitchen Cabinet Locks
The top priority is securing your cabinets. You store various items that could be dangerous for your pet. Imagine a dog opening a drawer and finding spices or other ingredients toxic for pups. Or a cat jumping to open the cabinet where you keep medications. That could have serious consequences, so using pet-proof locks is mandatory.
The good news is this won’t limit you when choosing storage options and arranging items. You can pick any kitchen cabinets that fit your style and preference. It’ll be easy to organize items and find your way around the kitchen. The locks will provide peace of mind that there’s no chance your pet could get their paws on any potentially dangerous items.
Get a Dog Feeding Station
Your pet is in the kitchen because they like spending time close to you. The other reason is looking for food. It’s why you often find the pet next to your feet while preparing meals. Your pup could be sitting down and showing their good manners, so you’d feed them. But that road often leads to dogs getting extra pounds and having problems with obesity.
The solution is to get a dog feeding station. Teach your pup that’s the only location where they’ll get food while in the kitchen. You can purchase interactive feeding stations that release food at certain times. Some even have functions like greeting your dog by name or announcing the food is ready with a sound.
Consider Pet Gates
Gates aren’t about restricting the pet’s movement but teaching them boundaries. In the kitchen, it helps your pup or cat understand where they can’t go. Let’s say you are fine with them being in the other half of the kitchen but don’t want them around your feet. It’s understandable while preparing meals since you are moving around, and you risk kicking your pet by accident.
You can pick from different types of pet gates. Some are permanent, and you can use them to keep your pet away from an area at all times. Others are freestanding or portable. They are useful if your pup has problems obeying your commands or if your cat keeps jumping on the working surface.
Fix the Flooring for a Pet-Friendly Kitchen
The crucial advice is to forget about carpets. Your pet is likely to urinate on the rug sooner or later. And there’s the danger of chewing or dragging it around. Instead, you want pet-friendly flooring suitable for animals.
Here are the materials to choose from when fixing the kitchen floor:
- Laminate. The material is scratch-resistant and will maintain its appearance for a long time.
- Ceramic tiles. These are durable and resistant to cracks and breaks. There’s no danger of water penetration if your pet urinates in the kitchen.
- Vinyl. It’s an excellent fit for modern kitchens. In addition, vinyl is pet-friendly and available in different styles.
- Natural stone. The material is beautiful, but you’ll need to seal it occasionally to avoid stains.
Keep Food Out of Reach
The kitchen is where you prepare, store, and maybe even consume food. That’s why it can’t be stressed enough how important it is to keep it away from your pets. Some human-safe ingredients are toxic for animals.
If you decide to feed your pup while preparing a meal, always check if they can consume that food. And when you aren’t in the kitchen, ensure the food is out of the pet’s reach. You can place it in the fridge, pick high cabinets, or install cabinet locks. The choice is up to you, but ensure the animal can’t get to the food even when you are away.