Let’s talk about our four-legged loved ones in the house. The APPA estimates that around 54.4 million households own at least one dog. Many of us view our pets as family members, so why do most homes neglect to take this into account? Where do they go during the day, to eat, to sleep and relieve themselves if they are indoor pals?
We’ll start with dogs, since they often tend to convince themselves that you’ll never return when you walk out the door. I think we can all agree that dogs keep us humble. Whether they’re learning puppies or simply have separation anxiety, they make messes. They chew up our favorite (brand new) red pumps or jump up on the counter and eat the side panel of the ginger bread house you just decorate… I digress.
To avoid catastrophe, many families crate their dogs when they leave. Big dogs call for big crates. Where does that go? Even if you don’t crate your dog, they still have their “things”. Where do you put the dog’s food and water? I know I have accidentally bumped the dogs bowl and scattered food or water all over the kitchen floor. Wouldn’t it be nice if you had a room dedicated for the dog? Compulsive destroyers can stay here while you’re out at work or running errands. Food can be stored out of the way and you can even bathe them here. I like a large mop sink with a hand held shower head and depending on the size of the dog, elevated off the floor just enough so I don’t have to bend down too much to wash the dog… Let me rephrase. Since it’s my daughter’s dog, so SHE doesn’t have to bend down to wash them.
Perhaps the dog room has a door for the neighbor kid or the dog walker to let the dog out when we are out of town, have to work late, or have an event with our kids after school. I would definitely plan on a durable floor surface – either tile or VCT.
Cats can still enjoy the benefit a pet room. Remove the litter box from the laundry room and set aside a space in the pet room where it belongs! If you’re brave enough, you can bathe your feline friend in the pet room. This room would be ideal to brush them minimize cat hair on furniture elsewhere around the home (or on your outfit when you show up for that big meeting).
A pet room is a practical way of catering to ourselves and to our beloved animals. Keeping all the messy bits from the rest of the house and in an easy clean-up environment will be one less thing to worry about at home.
Blog written by Deryl Patterson of Housing Design Matters