Dogs and cats are a big part of our families and we always want them to be safe and comfortable in our homes. I started collecting various ways to build in pet- friendly sleeping and feeding areas during construction — it would have been better to start in the planning stages. None of these built ins for pets were utilized in our new home, but if there is a next time, I’m ready.
The top picture was the first one I saved. Tucked under the eaves, there is plenty of space for a large dog to nap or move around — even windows to watch the squirrels. The wood framed metal screen doors don’t appear to have hinges, which makes me wonder if they are pocket doors, both sliding to the left when hidden. That would be a great idea, since it would allow the doors to be out of the way and pets could enter anytime.
Another underutilized area in a home is the space under a staircase. An arched doorway makes this dog den even more special. Remember doors should always be constructed of a material that allows airflow so it’s more comfortable for them.
The door of this bed nook was crafted from a vintage grate and blends into the decor when closed. Thinking outside the box leads to one-of-a-kind features.
Laundry rooms are other good areas to corral pets. This one features a bed niche alongside their bathing sink. A doorless niche is perfect if pets don’t require containment and it keeps the bed from being underfoot. Be sure not to miss the funky dog wallpaper.
A handy husband built this hutch designed by his wife, who happens to be an Atticmag reader. The cat cut-out leads to the hidden litter box. This clever detail could be added to many existing cabinets.
A kitchen remodel is another opportune time to include a kennel and feeding station. Here the resting spot is built up a step, creating a raised area for meals. Raised feeding reduces neck and back strain in larger breeds and also promotes healthy digestion.
A pair of vintage childrens’ chairs were altered to accept stainless bowls. As a chair fanatic, I love this idea but don’t think I could ever alter an older piece.
I’m not keen on these bowls that are dropped into a painted feeding station. It will be constant work to keep clean, but I wanted to show the adorable dog-bone-shaped drawer-pull cut-outs.
Next time you are planning new construction or remodeling, think ahead to include built ins for pets that will benefit the whole family.
(Sources: Do It Yourself, Funk Design, Detroit Home Magazine, laxsupermom, Gardenweb, Better Homes & Gardens, Artisan Kitchens)
For more pet-friendly ideas, see Built-ins For Pets 2.
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