Pets can become part of the family overnight. They offer a lifetime of companionship and love. Whether you adopted a disabled pet or your pet has developed a disability over the years, it doesn’t make them any less capable of offering you unconditional love and joy. However, there are some challenges that pets with disabilities face that their more physically able peers do not typically face. One of those challenges is finding your way around the house.
Your pet should be able to feel comfortable in your home, which also means that it can move around without problems.
Luckily, there are a few simple things you can do to make life at home easier for your disabled pet, starting with rethinking the way things are arranged. Let’s cover a few tips that will make a world of difference in your pet’s comfort.
Set up a separate room
Every pet deserves to feel safe. Dogs in particular are considered cave animals. As such, it’s not uncommon for them to feel better in a more enclosed area. If your pet is disabled, it can be even more beneficial to have a designated safe place for them.
Consider creating a pet room for your furry friend. You can adapt it to their needs while giving them a safe and quiet place to relax. Even though each pet room will be a little different, There are a few basics you should invest inincluding
- Pet friendly furniture
- Sturdy and safe furniture and decoration
- Comfortable pillows and blankets
- Cushions and carpets that are good for pets
- Minimize clutter for easier navigation
Depending on your companion’s disability, you might also want to consider things like low-floor beds so they can safely board and disembark without overexerting themselves or risking injury.
Make sure your pet’s room is fun and stimulating too! Consider a pet-themed decor. Throw in some of their favorite toys. Have a treat dispenser that makes it easy for them to get something treat by pressing a button or solving a puzzle. The room should be a sort of “safe haven” and playroom for your friend, not just a place to hide from the rest of the household.
Make simple changes
You don’t have to make drastic changes in your home to make things more accessible for your pet. A few simple mods can go a long way, especially if they have mobility issues. The best thing you can do is assess their needs. They know what they are capable of and where they fight. Any change you make should focus on those needs to make navigating the home as easy as possible for them.
Once you understand their needs better, think about what you can do about them make things safer for them.
Minimize clutter in your home
Try to minimize clutter so your pet doesn’t trip over things. Install small ramps leading to your bed or other furniture where they are allowed. Put non-slip treads on your stairs so they don’t fall off when they try to move around. Add rugs or carpet tiles in your home, not only for comfort but also to reduce the risk of slipping.
As you consider your pet’s needs and furnish your home, you’re going back to basics. Modifications such as raised food and water bowls can be easier for a pet with arthritis to avoid bending over as far.
If your dog or cat has mobility issues or is unable to move quickly, it’s also important to ensure they can relieve themselves comfortably. The last thing you want is to deal with frequent household accidents, and if your pet is used to being housebroken, they don’t want it either!
If you have a cat, you can prevent this with multiple litter boxes. Put one in a few different rooms so no matter where your cat is, it doesn’t have to go far to go to the bathroom.
For dogs, Consider installing a pet door This allows them to easily walk in and out without having to wait for anyone. Measure your dog’s height and weight before installing a door so they have enough room to get in and out easily – especially if they have mobility issues. You might also consider a bed made specifically for incontinent pets if they’re sleeping and can’t make it out in time. Besides these beds, a pet door is another great way to reduce the risk of accidents, so consider installing one on all front doors to your home.
Encourage a thriving lifestyle
Furnishing your home to make life easier for your disabled pet is only half the battle. One of the best things you can do is encourage a lifestyle that helps them thrive. This includes things like
- Regular training
- A healthy diet
- mental stimulation
- Medical supplies
Depending on your pet’s disability, these may have limitations. However, that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be challenged and encouraged for sure. A disabled pet doesn’t have to have a low quality of life.
To help your pet feel comfortable, you should consider certain types of therapy. Physical therapy can help with mobility issues and reduce pain. Like humans, Pets can also benefit from hydrotherapy as it is easy on the joints and offers a great cardiovascular workout. Additions and aids such as wheelchairs or harnesses can also make life easier for your dog or cat, both inside and outside the home.
In addition to a specific setup of your home, adjusting your daily routine can make a difference in your pet’s ability to thrive. Having a specific routine for your pet to follow will make it easier for them when it comes to mealtime, potty time, and knowing when and how to get to their safe area. Routines also provide comfort and safety—something every animal benefits from.
As a pet owner, you would do almost anything for your furry companion. While caring for a disabled pet can come with a few more obstacles, it pays to go the extra mile for them. By rearranging a few things at home and promoting a healthy quality of life, your pet’s disability will not let them down, and you will be able to enjoy many more loving moments together.
Charlie Fletcher is a freelance writer and pet parent from the beautiful “City of Trees” – Boise, Idaho. Her love of writing is coupled with her passion for animal rights and the search for truth. You can write more of her about her Satisfied.
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