Creating a pet-friendly home

As promised a few posts back, I figure it’s time to introduce our two cats – Ollie and Daisy. We brought Ollie home just over a year and a half ago, and Daisy six months later. While they’re a huge responsibility, our lives are all the better for it.

Daisy
Daisy
IMG_0481
Ollie

I grew up with cats, and love dogs, and have always believed that pets help make a house feel like a home. And in return, I wanted our house feel like it was a space for them as well. They’re indoor cats, so we wanted to give them plenty of spots to exercise, sleep, and play. But this is where we ran into a challenge – all the mass manufactured pet products are horridly tacky and cheap. Not really things I want scattered around our home. So rather than settle for the usual tat, we came up with some creative solutions that have really worked for us, and we’ve got more planned for the new place.

Pet beds: We use baskets instead of the oversized, leopard print sheepskin pillows that seem to be de-rigeur de pet stores. It took us five minutes at TK Maxx to find a few cheap but nice looking options that we could line with a blanket and place near various windows around the house. We’ve learned not to over-stuff them with fluffy pillows and instead just include a sheet, folded up and nestled in the bottom. The nice thing is they double as blanket holders, so it’s an easy way for us to keep our house tidy and also give them a little cubby to snooze in. It’s easy to wash, and they’re very happy.

Baskets as beds
Baskets as beds

Bowls – instead of the usual fish-print, we went for brightly coloured bowls with spots in an array of colours. We have a few with dry food and water scattered around the house, so they can eat near us. And we can swap them out daily so that they’re always clean.

Litter trays – for those of you with indoor cats and not a lot of space, I’m sure this is also a challenge for you. For now, we have standard plastic options set in a little nook in our flat. They’re pretty big, and very noticeable as our cats are pretty big as well (Norwegian Forest – like a Mancoon) and not very nice, but absolutely necessary. When we move, we’re planning to do some clever concealed options in the new place like this (thank god for Pinterest):

Hidden inside a cabinet
Hidden inside a cabinet
Settled in the bathroom
Settled in the bathroom

This way, hopefully we’ll contain the litter mess, whilst also making sure they have a nice space to do their business.

Any other ideas that you have to make your pets home a nice place, without compromising on style?

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