Whether you’re thinking of getting a dog, a cat, a parrot, or a combination of them , your home needs to be specifically adapted for their (and your) needs. The following are a few things to keep in mind when making this transition:
Every pet owner can readily tell you the importance of choosing the right floor for your pet. Muddy paw prints are a regular occurrence, as are piddles and regurgitated food. If you are lucky enough to have your cat or dog show affection towards you, a ‘gift’ might grace your floors; a headless lizard, or a mangled mouse, leaving your floor a bloody gruesome mess.
Needless to say, carpeted and wooden floors are not ideal for such scenarios. It is best to limit your choice to something like painted concrete or ceramic tiles, which do not stain easily and are easier to clean. These kinds of floors will also be cooler in summer, which is important to consider due to Malta’s scorching temperatures.
Animals tend to rub themselves against the walls, leaving dirt marks all over your apartment. Some dogs that are prone to drooling, like bull dogs and blood hounds, also spatter drool on the wall as they shake their heads from side to side. Matte paint is not ideal to clean, as an attempt tends to damage the paint. Instead, opt for a more stain-resistant semi-gloss, satin or egg-shell paint to cover your walls. These more durable options will allow you to wipe away any dirt marks or slime without affecting your paint.
In winter, rugs are a pet’s best friend. They provide a comfortable, warm area for pets to take a nap, a nap that usually lasts the whole day. They also protect pets from slipping on polished floors.
However, make sure that you attach double-sided tape beneath the rug, to keep it firmly in place. Alternatively, place heavy furniture on the corners of the rug. This will ensure that your pet does not slip while running around the house, as well as protect your rug from being carted off and torn to shreds by a bored dog.
Also double check the label of the rug to make sure it can be easily cleaned. Opt for something like wool rugs that resist stains well, or cotton rugs that are usually machine-washable.
One of the first rules pet owners try to enforce is keeping pets away from beds. Don’t worry if your attempt is a miserable failure. This is usually a war that is lost within the first couple of weeks. When you resign yourself to the fact that your pet will huddle next to you, make sure that you invest in a moisture-resistant mattress pad that will help protect the mattress from any accidents. Always cover your quilts in washable covers that can be easily changed. A multi-coloured pattern also hides most of the pet hair that is inevitably left behind.