a happy dog laying down and watching owner dog proofing the house.

Should Spring Clean Up Include Dog Proofing Your Home

If you’re a new dog owner, it is no surprise that these furry friends are curious, sometimes mischievous creatures. While their antics are playful and joyous, ensuring a safe and secure environment for them to roam is crucial. Consider putting dog proofing on your spring cleaning task list this season.

Keep reading for details about how and why to dog proof to keep your pup out of harm’s way!


Essentials of a Dog Proof Trash Can 

Our pooches have an incredible sense of smell and are drawn to unfamiliar, enticing scents. A puppy, especially, will dig through the trash to investigate new smells. Because of this, one of the first things on your task list should be a dog proof trash can. 

Invest in a sturdy trash can with a closed top. Many options are available, some with simple latches and others with a scent-proof sophisticated opening system. Find what works for your household and ensure the trash can is securely closed at all times. This sophisticated, PetGuard trash can or this classic motion sensor are two great options!


Details of a Dog Proof Litter Box

Another source of temptation for dogs is a litter box. Dogs and puppies are ultra-curious and prone to consuming anything they can get their paws on. Some puppies are even prone to eating poop! If you have both a cat and a dog, it’s vital to secure the litter box away from locations your pup will be present. 

A dog proof litter box, like this one, should be inaccessible to your pup. Try using a baby gate or some other creative barrier that your cat can still get around. 

Pro tip: buy a litter box with a top on it since they usually have a much smaller opening. This will make it difficult for larger breeds to get in.


More Ideas For Dog Proofing

Trash cans and litter boxes aside, you can take many other steps to ensure a safe home environment. Consider these tips!

Home Layout

Dogs are like babies, so it’s essential to consider the layout of your home. Pups are explorers at heart, but they also have their moments of clumsiness. Potential hazards like sharp corners and low-hanging objects can be dangerous, so remove or secure these things. 

Avoid injuries and keep an eye out for potential escape routes, like an open window without a screen. Lastly, always supervise your dog when they are outside.

Cords and Wires

Electrical cords and wires are also hazards for dogs. Playful at heart, they can be easily tempted to chew on or play with them. Use cord protectors and coverings that can easily attach to your walls or floors to prevent your pup from getting tangled. 

Additionally, ensure that electrical outlets are covered to prevent your pup from sticking their nose (or tongue!) into them.

Hazardous Household Substances

Many household cleaning supplies, medications, and plants are toxic to animals. It’s important to ensure your dog isn’t exposed to hazardous substances. Here are a few common hazardous household products and plants to keep in mind:

  • Chocolate
  • Medicine intended for humans, such as Ibuprofen
  • Alcohol
  • Fabric softener sheets
  • Insecticides and pesticides
  • Mothballs
  • Lawn fertilizer 
  • Household cleaner, such as bleach
  • Mouse bait
  • Aloe vera
  • Lilies
  • Poinsettia

Prevent accidental poisonings by storing all items in a secure location. Be sure to keep all plants high up at an appropriate distance, too.

Remember, if you’re unsure about if something is safe, contact your vet for advice.


Safer Household Alternatives

Once you familiarize yourself with the hazardous household items that can affect your furry friend, it can be challenging to find a solution. Luckily, there are wonderful product alternatives that keep your pup safe and their health a priority. 

Give these three DIY, pet-safe alternatives a shot:

  • Homemade Cleaners: Usually, household cleaners have products you want to avoid like ammonia, bleach, and formaldehyde. When making your DIY, non-toxic cleaner, use ingredients like vinegar, lemon juice, water, baking soda, and tea tree oil!
  • Candles: Unfortunately, candles are typically created with elements that create unhealthy airborne chemicals. Instead, opt for safer candles with ingredients like beeswax, coconut oil, natural soy, and essential oils!
  • Carpet Cleaner: Carpet cleaners and deodorizers are commonly made with synthetic fragrances and toxic chemicals that exacerbate allergies. Try a safer carpet deodorizer that absorbs odor and uses ingredients like baking soda, corn starch, essential oils, and zinc oxide!


Put Safety First This Season!

Knowing how to dog proof your home can seem daunting, but it’s essential to being a responsible paw parent. Evaluate your home and take note of potential hazards. Remember, your dog’s safety and well-being should always be top priorities. With some action steps, you’ll create a comfortable and safe home environment while preventing future accidents.

If you’re looking for sound advice from a veterinarian, look no further. Here at Get Joy, we offer a wide range of health services. From a TeleVet line to an “ask our experts” line, your questions will be answered by an empathetic, experienced health professional. 

Get started today – you won’t regret it!