We used to balk at the phrase “In the Doghouse”. But if you’ve been to a pet store recently, you might’ve noticed that Fido is sleeping more comfortably than many of us. As pets become more and more a part of the family, their cozy spaces are becoming much more appealing. Fluffy pet beds, massive houses, colorful accessories, intricate play places... pets have got it pretty good, and it’s wonderful!
Searching for the right home for your pet? I have a few thoughts!
First, consider your pet’s unique needs. Dogs and cats like cozy spaces for sleeping. A luxurious pet palace might seem like a darling indulgence, but most dogs and cats prefer sleeping quarters that aren’t much bigger than their bodies. Instead of seeking size, find a sleeping house that’s comfortable, cozy and well ventilated.
Dogs like to have a space to “come home to” when they’re outside. Wooden doghouses are the traditional choice, but today’s pet stores offer plenty of alternatives. Wooden doghouses can sometimes require maintenance; if you’re DIY-averse, choose a plastic-composition doghouse.
Have a dog that’s anxious or destructive? Skip the doghouse and choose a kennel. The metal bars will stand up to clawing and gnawing, but the tight confines are actually surprisingly comforting to nervous pups. Choose a kennel that’s rated for your pet’s size and weight. Many dogs enjoy having a fluffy bed or blankie in their kennel, for comfort. Kennel pads are wonderful, too.
Got a cat that loves to claw? Choose a hidey hole that’s covered in carpet or sisal. This will let your kitty claw scratch to her heart’s content–when she’s not napping the day away, at least.
Many pets (like my cat) prefer no housing at all, beyond being indoors. If this is your pet’s style, don’t fight it; embrace it! Spread out a blanket in your pet’s favorite spot to collect fur and dander.
Research exotic pets to understand what type of home will be best for your pet. Resist what’s an easy choice and opt for what’s truly right for your pet. In any case, be sure your pet’s home is made of non-toxic materials intended for pet living.
For all pets, it’s essential to place your pet’s home in a spot that’s preferably climate-controlled, quiet, shady and out of the way of any potential dangers. Choose a spot that your pet is familiar with and happy staying in. If your pet resists their new home, give it time (and treats) before moving it to try another placement.