Pets—we sure do love them! Dogs, cats, bunnies, birds and many more. They are often our best buddies and we want to treat them right. Here are some clever ideas for keeping pets comfortable year round and also for solving some common household pet problems without spending a lot of time or money.
Many pet birds love to take baths. Next bath time, try
using a new plastic paint tray as a bathtub! The ribs on the
bottom of the tray provide traction, and the tray's
slope allow your pets to wade in the shallow water
until they're ready to move into the deep end.
Paint trays are cheap and easy to
clean, and they also make great turtle
pools (but don't tell your birds).
In the summertime, a favorite destination
for ants is often a pet's food bowl. Here's a simple
way to keep them out of your dog or cat's food—set the dish in a pan of water. Not only does it keep
the ants out of the pet food, but your pet can take a gulp of
water from the pan whenever he or she needs a drink.
Hot summer days are tough on bunnies. Here's a
great way to recycle plastic water bottles and keep
your bunnies cool at the same time. Fill the bottles
with water, freeze them solid and then set them out
in the rabbit hutches. The bunnies love to laze
against the bottles as the ice
thaws. This works great
with puppies, too.
Does your dog's barking in
the car drive you nuts? Try
this trick: Every time your
dog barks, close the windows
(watch her head).
She'll quickly learn that
barking means no fresh air
and no slobbery tongue
flapping in the breeze.
After a few car rides,
you'll both be
driving around in
Is your dog getting a little chubby?
Try replacing his high-calorie treats with plain
rice cakes. Even if you think they're tasteless,
dogs go nuts over them and vets often suggest
them as a lower fat (and less expensive) substitute
for regular dog treats.
Some dogs love to gnaw on electrical cords
around the house. This is not only dangerous
but also really irritating when they
destroy your computer cables. Solve the
problem by wrapping the cords with split
flexible plastic conduit that you get at
home centers and automotive stores
($3.50 for 10 ft.). Just cut the
length you need and push the
cords into the pre-split slot. Your dog will
soon lose interest in the cords. Now if you could
just get him to stop chewing up your slippers!
Does your dog eat your cat's food? Put a stop to
the double-dipping by moving your cat's dish
into a different room that has a door.
Attach adhesive-backed hook-and-loop
fasteners to the back of the door and to the
front of the trim. After filling the cat's dish,
hook up the fasteners so
the door only opens 5 in. Now
your cat can come and go and
eat his meal in peace.
For a calmer and easier bath time, make a dog washing station in
your shower. Cover the drain with a hair catcher ($3.50 at hardware
stores) to prevent fur from clogging it. Cut a hole in a bath
mat so it fits over the drain and lay it in the shower to prevent
your dog from slipping around. Using a handheld sprayer gives
you more control and lets you avoid spraying water into your
pet's ears. Everyone involved will find bath day a whole lot more pleasant.
Have the necessary tools for this DIY project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.
Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here's a list.
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