Pets and children are beloved members of the family. They bring joy and a sense of purpose to everyone, and they’re simply a joy to be around with. However, having both a pet and a young child can spell disaster for your home organization. Your house will be littered with childcare items or pet toys, but with how much we love them, it’s a willing trade-off.
If you purchased a house before having a child or a pet, you most probably designed the house with adults in mind. The interior design and decoration of your home are most likely done with a sense of normalcy and predictability—like hanging frames, open shelves, and other items in precarious positions. Of course, there’s no need to worry about the safety of your items when all the people living in the house are responsible adults. But living with children and pets is an entirely different experience, one filled with a sense of excitement and surprise at every corner.
This can lead to moments where you’ll find your favorite vase broken or see a thin shelf knocked over. At worst, your child or pet can be injured by their curiosity and your house’s design. To minimize potential danger (and damage), a bit of redesigning to make your house pet- and child-proof is needed.
Make Sure Your Furniture Are Secure
Open shelves, tall bookshelves, weak drawers, and flimsy TV stands are all just waiting to be knocked over. To make sure that your pet and child’s playtime is safe, it’s best to affix this furniture to the wall. Especially for fragile items like flat-screen TVs, or multimedia devices, it’s best to minimize all potential areas your child can push and prod. Having your furniture fixed against a wall makes it difficult to be tipped over, and to improve the chances that they won’t, you can use brackets. There are child safety tethers and brackets that you can connect to the back of the furniture and the wall, so even if one was to put pressure in front, it won’t fall forward. If you don’t trust tethers and prefer to secure both your expensive items and your loved ones, you can utilize a sturdy L-bracket commonly used for shelves. While they’re a more permanent solution and can be a sore to the eyes, you can simply design around it.
Use Child-proof Locks
Inquisitive and curious minds will always find a way to open your kitchen cupboard and cabinets. From heavy pots and pans to other items hidden in your bottom drawer, you can never be too sure what your kids and pets will get their hands on. Luckily, this is easily preventable by installing child locks on the doors of the spaces you don’t want them to get to. There are multiple kinds of child locks, and choose the best the one that best fits your cabinets or drawers. This, of course, isn’t limited to just your kitchen. You can install child locks to just about any storage you don’t want them getting into.
Cover Your Electrical Sockets and Protect Your Wires
Electrical sockets are among the major causes of injuries in both young children and pets. We’ve all heard horror stories of kids poking metal objects like forks into open outlets. Pets tend to chew on wires too, exposing the dangerous copper with flowing electricity inside. These dangers can be easily prevented by covering electrical sockets. You can purchase socket plugs designed to keep the curious ones out of harm’s way or use a small box to cover it up. For the wire situation, you can cover your wires with a chew-proof outer layer- or by simply keeping the wires out of reach. Proper wire management is crucial to making sure your kids won’t trip on them or pets won’t bite them. Tuck them in a corner or use cable blankets.
Keep Medicines and Other Chemicals Away
The dangers of easily accessible cleaning materials or even medicine cannot be overstated. As adults, we’re smart enough to understand how dangerous these things are, but children and pets simply don’t understand that. All they see are colorful candy-like objects or strange bottles with an interesting design. It goes without saying to keep these kinds of items away, hidden in a corner that your pets or kids won’t reach. As mentioned before, you can store these items in a cabinet or a drawer protected by a child-lock. The medicine should always be kept on high shelves, away from their prying hands as well.
Getting your home pet- and child-proof may seem like an intimidating task, but it’s worth it for your family’s safety. So follow these tips above to start your home redesign project.