Remodeling projects are exciting for the human members of a household. But the unfamiliar faces, disrupted schedules, and loud noises, the furry, feathery, or scaly members of the family might be a little less thrilled. This can put our pets in some unsafe situations if we aren’t careful. Being able to board our pets or have them stay with friends is ideal in this situation, but isn’t always possible. For those scenarios, we need to learn how to keep pets safe during home improvement projects when they’re at home with us.
Find a Safe Pet Spot
The best bet for keeping pets safe during a home remodel is to have them as far removed from the remodel as possible. This may mean putting up a pet gate at the top of the stairs or keeping them closed in a room or the backyard. Wherever this spot, it should be clearly marked so workers coming in and out know an animal is there.
However, being closed off from the world can also prove stressful for your pets. Make sure their bed, their food, and all their favorite toys are secluded with them. And, as much as possible, try to take breaks to spend time with your pets. If you usually feed them or walk them at a certain time, try to maintain that schedule.
Renovation projects often take a toll on the indoor air quality of the house. This is especially true if you’re painting. Many paints, especially oil-based paints, contain volatile organic compounds (or VOCs.) That’s the stuff that makes you feel sick or woozy when you smell paint. Pets are also negatively impacted by VOCs and often experience the same symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, and headaches. If you want to know more about how keeping your room ventilated against VOCs during painting can keep you and your pets safe, read here.
VOCs aren’t the only thing that can negatively impact the air quality. Most home improvement projects produce dust, especially projects that involve wood (such as sanding.) Dust can also harm you and your pets’ airways. Keeping the windows open and fans going will help clear the air. Until then, keep pets away from where the project is happening.
Keep an Eye on Scraps
At the end of a workday, your space may be filled with debris harmful for your pet—from sharp pointy things they could step on, to all the things that are most definitely not food your pet most definitely will try to eat. Before you release their dog from their mini staycation, make sure you thoroughly clean the area. Then do a walk-through throughout the house to catch any debris that migrated away from your work site.
Changing up our living space is an exciting time. By making sure our pets are safe and sound during remodeling, it can become an exciting time for them, too.