How to prepare your house for a pet

golden labrador lying on wooden floor with ripped toy in mouth

Jessica Taylor Yates

Posted July 15, 2021

Make your pet feel like a part of the family from day one. 

Bringing a new pet home comes with a lot of excitement – but it's also a big responsibility. Once your household has discussed and decided on the type of pet you will get and who'll be responsible for its care, it's time to get your house ready for your pet's brand-new home.

To make sure your pet settles in as best they can, you need to make your home safe and comfortable for the whole family. 

Tips to prepare your home for a new pet

Buy pet supplies ahead of time

Many pets such as dogs and cats will need supplies ahead of time. This includes items such as a collar, leash, ID tags, litter or a fake grass area and a doggy door. Ensuring your pet has all their items ahead of time will help them to feel more at home.

Get their home ready

There’s your home, but there is also your pet's place of residence. Whether it's a bed, cage, kennel, or bowl, make sure the latest member of your family has a space that is all theirs. Prepare their space so it's comfortable and is in a ‘spot’ they can get used to. Have their food and drink area prepared, a designated place for them to do their 'business,’ and ensure you have some toys to keep them occupied and happy.

Make time to settle your pet

Have a pet is a big responsibility. Plan ahead when it comes to your pet's needs, such as walks, training school, toilet training, cleaning their area, and what you plan to do with your pet when you are at work or away.

two dogs standing up against indoor fence

Preparation is the key to success with your new furry friends. Images: Getty. 

Find a good local vet

There will be times when your pet needs to see specialists. Find a good local vet so your pet can be checked for their vaccinations, de-sexing, and any operations, medications, or check-ups they may need. Having a local groomer on call is also handy, particularly if you have an animal that needs regular maintenance for their fur, nails or coat.

Have the right paperwork prepared

Adopting, rescuing, or buying a new pet requires a lot of responsibility. It's a good idea to have as much paperwork ready and stored as you can. This can include their adoption papers, medical history and pet registration in your local area.

Pet-proof your home

Pets have different requirements to humans, so it's vital to do an evaluation of your home and make the necessary preparations for your pet, such as:

  • Finding a tradie to help secure your yard and fence to eliminate the possibility of escape
  • Blocking or getting locks for hazardous areas such as your fireplace, stairs, doors and windows
  • Moving dangerous toxins such as chemicals, medications, powders, and sprays to where they cannot be reached
  • Placing any food that is on display, such as fruit bowls or lollies, back in the fridge or cupboard where it cannot be eaten by an overconfident pet
  • Removing choking hazards such as toys, electrical cords, and certain toxic plants from where they can be reached, as well as items such as vases or ornaments that could be knocked over in a scuffle.
  • Closing off areas such as toilets and bedrooms (if pets are not allowed inside these areas)
  • Consider purchasing baby or pet-proof locks for cupboards containing food or rubbish for when you are out

Overall, the best way to make your new pet feel right at home is to prepare with the above tips so that they can come into their new space and feel like they are right at home.