Foolproof Techniques to Make Your Home Safer for Your Dog

Dog Laptop

Dogs can seem like hardy creatures, but it’s a lot of work to keep them safe. If you aren’t careful, they can get into a lot of trouble. There are all sorts of things that can hurt your dog if you don’t take the care needed to avoid them. Puppies, in particular, can be too curious for their own good and get into things that they should stay away from. If you’re bringing a new dog home or perhaps moving into a new house, you need to make sure it’s safe and secure. Make sure you do at least some of the things in the list below to keep your pooch happy.

Prevent Them from Eating Things They Shouldn’t

Making your home safe for a dog is a little bit like baby proofing it, especially with a puppy. Like babies, they like to explore things with their mouths. And you don’t want them to “explore” the wrong thing and end up seriously ill. You first task should be to ensure that your dog can’t munch on anything he shouldn’t be eating. The important thing is not to underestimate how sneaky they can be! You might think everything is safe. But many dogs will use their paws and snout to get into cupboards and other places. If you think it’s a good idea, you can use latches like you would for children. You should also have a smart trash can that dogs can’t easily get into. The same goes for not leaving food lying around where your dog can snatch it.

Tidy Cables Away

Keeping with the theme of eating things they shouldn’t, dogs can be champion chewers. Even if they don’t intend to swallow something, they still want to have a nibble. Cables can be prime suspects, and that can be dangerous for your doggy. To prevent them trying to have a chew on any of your various cables, attempt to cover them or, at least, tidy them out of the way. For example, you can make sure your computer cables are tucked neatly behind your desk. You can find lots of products designed for hiding cables away and keeping them organized. As well as protecting your dog, it looks neater and could stop you tripping over them too.

Create an Enclosed Outdoor Area

Dog Fence

Dogs need plenty of time outside, and you don’t always want to take them for a walk. It’s convenient to have space outdoors where they can do their business and have a run around. If you have a backyard or even a patch of land, it makes a great area for them to spend some time. But you don’t want them to be able to run off anywhere, so an enclosed space will make things safer. As well as keeping them in, it will also keep other animals and people out. Put up a fence so that they can’t get out of your chosen area. You might choose to have it go a couple of feet underground so nothing can dig under it.

Install an Invisible Fence

Some dog owners choose to use an invisible fence for their dogs. If you don’t want to put up a wooden or metal fence, you might consider this option. The fence is installed underground as a wire that communicates with your dog’s collar. When your dog approaches the boundary of the fence, the collar first gives off a short sound. If they keep going, it gives them a mild electric stimulation. It’s not designed to hurt the dog, just to give it a warning about how far they can go. Using these fences also requires training for your dog. You can’t leave it down to the fence alone. You can find companies that will offer you support in training your dog. While you train them, you can also put up white flags around the perimeter to let them know where the fence is.

Be Careful Leaving Them Outside Alone

It’s no secret that there are people out there who aren’t so kind to dogs. Some do the things they do for profit, whereas others just seem to have a doggy vendetta. Whatever their reasons, you need to protect your dog from bad people. You don’t need to watch your dog every time you let them outside. But you need to be careful about anything that might go wrong. For example, dog theft is common in many areas, especially with purebred dogs. You should also keep an ear out for tales of people dropping poisoned food into backyards. While sometimes these are just urban myths, there have been cases of this happening. In particular, watch out for difficult neighbors who look for any way to upset you.

Create Comfortable Outdoor Conditions

Dog Snow

Some dogs will spend more time outside than others. If your dog loves to be outdoors, especially when you’re there, make sure to keep them safe. One thing you need to do is watch the temperature. If it’s getting too cold, they should really go indoors, or, at least, have somewhere warm for shelter. When it’s hot, they need a place to lie in the shade, as well as plenty of water to keep them hydrated.

Take Them to Training

Dogs need to be trained. Making sure your dog is well trained isn’t just for your safety and other people’s. It’s also to help keep your dog safe. If they know how to behave in a variety of different situations, they won’t risk getting hurt. Part of their training should be about helping them stay calm in different situations. They also need to learn vital skills like coming when called and staying. These skills can help in many cases. Training sessions are also an excellent opportunity for you to socialize your dog. They can meet lots of different dogs and people.

Secure Exit Points

When your dog is inside the house, you don’t want them going outside unless you let them. Dogs can be surprisingly sneaky if they want to open a door or window and get out. You should make sure that any exits in your home are secure, especially when your dog is going to be left alone. You should be especially careful with puppies or small dogs, who can squeeze through gaps. Leaving your windows open could be dangerous, as your dog could fall out of one of them if you’re not careful.

Dogs and Other Pets


If you have other pets at home, there are some extra safety concerns to consider. For example, some dogs can’t help but rummage around in a cat’s litter box. You don’t want them eating whatever they find, so it’s best to keep them away. Some cat owners will choose to put a baby gate in the room that houses their litter trays. Another risk is that your dog doesn’t get on with another of your pets. There are ways to avoid this when you introduce a new animal into your home. Introducing them to each other slowly is essential so that they can get used to each other. However, if they have trouble living together you might have to think of other solutions. If they can’t be separated in the house, rehoming one of your pets might be the best option.

Leaving Your Dog Home Alone

Not many people can be at home to look after their dog 24/7. Most people have to go to work or have other commitments that aren’t dog-friendly. If your dog has to stay home alone, you need to be extra careful about making it safe. There won’t be anyone there to rescue them if they accidentally find something they shouldn’t have. Before you leave them, it’s a good idea to have a check for anything that could hurt them while you’re gone. You never know if you might have dropped something dangerous on the floor. You should also consider having someone come in to walk them during the day. They’ll have a chance to stretch their legs and do their business before you get home. Alternatively, you could drop in on your lunch break.

Holiday Hazards

Certain times of year can present new problems in your home for your dog. The holiday period can mean having to be extra vigilant to keep your hound safe. For example, there’s a lot of food, including chocolate, which is poisonous to dogs. You might have bones left over from turkey and other meat and fish. It might be tempting to give them to your dog, but it’s safer not to. Stick to using them for a stock instead and perhaps treat your dog to some homemade food. Be careful with fruit and nuts too, such as grapes and macadamias. They’re not healthy for your dog to eat. Watch out for poisonous plants such as mistletoe, and be careful not to leave ribbons and wrapping lying around.

Keeping your dog safe is a full-time task. You have to be vigilant to protect them from the hazards that could be present in and around your home.

Would you like to receive similar articles by email?

Dr. Jade Marie Tomaszewski is a pathologist-in-training at McGill University, where she also did her degree in MSc Pathology. She obtained her medical degree (MD) from the University of the Philippines, after completing a BSc in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology. In her (little) spare time, she enjoys spending time with family, curling up with a book and a large mug of tea, and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. You can follow her on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *