How to Design a Pet-Friendly Home

By Sanda Brown

How to Make Your Home Pet Friendly

When you buy a newly built home, you get the chance to create a beautiful space, customized to your family’s lifestyle. For many, that includes your pets, too. By coordinating your design and décor choices, you can make your new home as inviting to your pets as it is to the human members of your family.

Talk With Your Builder

Work with your builder to create the perfect pet palaces within your home. Skip time-consuming, frustrating, and difficult DIY jobs, and let the experts you hired to make your dream home a reality make your pet’s life better too.

During the early stages of designing your new home, talk with your builder about including custom built-ins and cabinets for your pets. Many homebuilders empathize with the love their homeowners feel for their furry family members and offer pet-specific customization options, including: 

  • Kennel spaces that help you safely kennel your pets in your home
  • Washing stations that minimize messes from bath time
  • Food and water bowl stations 
  • Custom spaces for your dog or cat’s bedding 
You can also work with your builder to create cabinets that can serve as pet stations. Custom cabinets can transform tall, narrow spaces into the perfect place to hang leashes and collars. If you want a designated space for food, medicines, or other pet-related items, see what options your builder has for custom shelving.

Design With Pets in Mind

When you decorate your new home, keep your pets in mind as you consider décor choices. By taking advantage of your home’s existing features and some nifty décor tricks, you can design beautiful spaces that your animals will love.

If you go the DIY route, be thoughtful about your new home’s layout before you start that pet station project. New homes offer families a lot of storage options, so think about where you want to store your pets’ things, and where you want your pets eating and sleeping. Shelving in your laundry room or mudroom offer out-of-the-way places for storage. Nooks and niches in more connected parts of the home are great places for your pet’s bed, offering them a comfortable place to rest that still makes them feel like part of the family.

If you have parts of the home you do not want your pets accessing, you have a few options for keeping them out. Built-in pet gates can safely block off large sections of the home, and corral your four-legged friends in their designated spaces. Childproof latches on doors can also prevent curious pets from getting into bathrooms, home offices, or more formal rooms.

Pet-Proof Your New Home

Even the cleanest pets shed and make occasional messes in the house. Once you are living in your beautiful new home, pet-proof it to maintain that brand-new feel.

One of the best ways to protect your fabrics from hair, claws, drool, and other predicable pet-related messes is to use durable upholstery materials. If you let your pets on the furniture, look for pieces with slipcovers, so you can toss dirty covers in the washing machine. Keep an eye out for tough fabrics like cotton blends—or even outdoor fabrics—to make cleaning easier.

Reduce pet-induced disaster and keep your four-legged family members safe in your home by limiting dangling cords and fabrics. Have a charging station for phones that keeps cords out of sight and reach of pets who might get tangled up in the wires. If your cat likes to shred climb curtains, opt for shorter window coverings.
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After graduating in 2016 from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in English, Sanda Brown became a content writer. At Builders Digital Experience (BDX), Sanda helps write and edit articles on and, writes website copy for builders, and manages a team of freelancers that work on additional content needs.

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