How To…

Where to house your pets? 5 clever ways to incorporate pet beds

Animal lovers the world over: here are some clever ways to incorporate your pet’s bed into the finish of your stylish home.

The only thing you should remember when making any solid pet beds is that the size has to be right. It’s hard to get a German shepherd to fit into the space meant for a chihuahua, and no amount of explanation or remonstration will help them feel more comfortable.

Remember, measure, observe your pet’s behaviour when they are in bed, and try to make a bed they can really love.

1. Built in dog crates for your kitchen and living room

Dogs are den creatures, and this means they often feel most safe and secure when they’re tucked away inside four close walls with a little roof over their heads. For this reason, many dog experts recommend crate training for your pooch. It can seem strange to humans who dread the idea of being trapped in a cage, but the added safety felt by the dog increases their self-confidence and reduces anxiety.

However, crates are often huge! Even for a relatively small dog, the volume of a dog crate has to be taken into account, as it is deep, tall, and long.

So what can you do?

One of the nicest trends in home interiors for pets right now is the built-in dog crate. Fitted under a table, or beneath the breakfast bar or other counter tops in the kitchen, you can incorporate the same look like the rest of the room, without compromising your dog’s safety, security, and comfort.

If your dog prefers creature comforts, the living room can also provide some great spaces. Perhaps you have an empty corner of the room that needs filling or a space that could take an adapted table top with a crate built in below. Vintage dressers often come with a large space beneath, and these are relatively easy to adapt if you have some joinery skills and a smallish dog. Old-style writing desks can also be perfectly adapted for cats and small dogs.

2. Handy table den beds

Not all homes have the same amount of available space, so adding more furniture for the sake of disguising a pet bed may not work for you. For this reason a den bed under an already useful table or desk can be a perfect spot for sleeping. With the roof over their heads, and perhaps a curtain or two around the outside, they’ll still feel safe, but there’s space for them to stretch out and really make the most of their little room.

It doesn’t have to be the dining table. Many people have side or end tables next to their sofa, so giving these a dual purpose could be the answer. Let’s face it, most pets like to be in on the action, so having their bed in the same room where everyone else relaxes is usually the answer to pet bed location problems.

3. Under-table cat hammocks

Cats, as most of us know, are not inclined to sleep where they’re supposed to. Get them a new bed, and they’re just as likely to spend the next year lounging in the cardboard box it came in.

However, if you think your moggy could be purr-suaded to take up residence in a specially designed cat hammock, these are so easy to create, you’ll be laughing. You can make these on stools, side tables, or even under the dining table. In fact, as long as there are four legs to which you can attach the corners, you’re laughing. Velcro is your friend.

4. DIY pallet beds for dogs and cats

If you’re handy with a hammer, saw, and a bag of nails, you might like to re-purpose one of those ubiquitous wooden delivery pallets. Although these lend themselves to the raw, reclaimed wood look, they can also be sanded, polished, and painted, so you don’t have to commit yourself to an out-of-place pet bed in your suave and sophisticated apartment.

Pallet beds can range from the most simple type of box bed, to cute adaptations that create a mini sofa, or cat scratching posts, and with enough pallet wood, you can even make a twinset. And don’t forget that vintage wooden crates, such as wine crates or even strong cardboard boxes can be pretty useful in the same way that pallets can, but sometimes with even less work.

5. Adapted furniture for cats, rabbits, and small dogs

It might sound silly, but dolls furniture can often provide a fun and stylish base for your pet. Smaller pets, obviously. Bunk beds and single cots are a great choice here.

Full-size drawers—attached to the wall if you have the space—are also innovative cat spaces. These are also fab for rabbit beds, depending on how much freedom you let your bunny have in the house. It’ll probably be best to keep the drawer on the floor if your pet is a rabbit, mind.

Another way tables can be used for pet beds is to turn them upside down! The four-poster effect is as wonderful for your dog as it would be for you, and if you’re handy with a sewing machine, you can go all-in for a real girly princess dog bed if that’s how you roll.

It might be harder to house some pets discreetly. Snakes, lizards and fish: these all tend to require tanks of some sort. Rodents, like friendly rats, hamsters and gerbils, their cages can take up a lot of room, and can also be tricky to disguise. However, for the more free-running pets, we hope we’ve been able to provide some Finished inspiration on the question of where to house your pets.

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