Pet-proofing your home

Dog lying on dog bed

So you want a furry bundle of joy but have doubts whether your home is suited for the task? We’re here to lend a helping paw. Use the following checklist to sniff out potential hazards and raise the woof on pet home safety. While it may not cover every danger, we’re pawsitive it’ll set you on the right track.

Power cords

Gnawing teeth and electrical currents are a combination best avoided. Your first line of defense is simply to hide power cords wherever possible, and after that to cover up anything that’s still exposed. For this, different pet-targeted products are available on the market, but some basic split loom tubing should also do the trick. Unplugging items when not in use is also a good habit to get into.

Poisonous items

Puppies and kittens have curious appetites—often for things their stomachs can’t handle. Take protective measures by ensuring that potentially harmful foods, medications, cleaning supplies and plants are placed up high or otherwise made inaccessible (e.g. cabinet locks and pet-proof trash can covers). And even if a particular food item is safe, don’t underestimate your pet’s ability to get into mischief with the packaging. Be especially wary of grapes, chocolate and products that contain xylitol, such as mints and gum.

Choking hazards

Pet-proofing is starting to sound a lot like baby-proofing, isn’t it? Just like you would with an infant or toddler, be cognizant of any small items that present choking hazards. That includes items your animal friends might be able to chew off, like buttons from clothing or pillows. Also, be aware of plastic wrapping and bags that could pose a suffocation hazard.

Small spaces

Tiny animals can go places we can’t, and often that’s not a good thing. Check that your vent covers are sturdy and that there isn’t room for your little fur ball to get stuck in between or behind heavy furniture and appliances.

Pools, hot tubs & toilets

This one’s simple: make sure they can’t fall in. Though many breeds are instinctual swimmers, others are less so.

Appliance doors

Before running the washer or dryer, check to make sure your pet hasn’t climbed inside.



Apply the same level of scrutiny to your outdoor spaces. Look around for poisonous plants in the back and front and make sure to mitigate any danger zones your pet could wander into. And if you have a deck, take care to ensure your puppy or kitten won’t take a nasty fall.

Happy pet-proofing! After you’re done, check out our other pet-related articles.