Plan home renovations well, so protect your pet.

Home Renovations and Pet Safety


Recent Blog:

Home renovations can be loud, dusty, and full of strange smells. However, once they’re done and your bathroom, kitchen, etc has a ‘new look’, it can be well worth the trouble.

From your cat’s or dog’s perspective, the reno process may seem much more different. One morning things are hunky-dory, the next strangers are marching in and out of their territory. Also, given pets have senses far superior to our own, those home renovations will be LOUDER, DUSTIER, and SMELLY-ER!

For pets, construction works can be confusing and scary. Luckily, there are ways to make your renovation ideas come to life while keeping your pets safe and happy.

1. Plan your home renovations well

As pet parent, you know your furkids better than anyone. So you’re the ideal person to keep them happy during renovations.

Consider what your home renovations will entail and what your pet is like. This way you’ll have some idea of how they might react and where problems could arise.

As a starting point, here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • How long will renovations last?
  • When will work be happening and where?
  • Can safe areas be designated and blocked off for your pet (read pet proofing your home)?
  • How does your pet manage around strangers?
  • Do loud noises affect your pet (read pet safety and fireworks)?
  • Can your pet handle being in a locked room or crate (read about crate training a puppy)?
  • Is there someone who can spend time supervising your pet, like a neighbour or a pet godparent?
  • If gates/doors are left open accidentally, is your pet likely to escape and get lost – or stay put?
  • Are there other dangers that may emerge around workers and materials?

Doing small renovations like a contained bed or bathroom is much less stressful on your pet than replacing the entire flooring or tearing out walls, for instance.

Use your knowledge as pet parent to prepare what work you’ll do and in what order to keep your pet safe and happy during home renovations.

Prep home renovations and keep your pet away

2. Protect pets, even if they hate it

Although it may be difficult to keep pets happy during home renovations, safety is a must. That means taking any steps necessary to keep them secure. And away from harmful things that can poison your pet like paint and chemicals. As well as construction hazards like falling bricks and other debris… You get the picture!

Cats, especially those accustomed to being outdoors (read about indoor cat vs outdoor cat), will be used to coming and going on their own terms. If you need to limit that freedom to keep kitty secure, you might need to prepare for a bit of a sassy sulk. 

But it’s not just felines, our canines are also likely to get an added bout of zoomies having their movements restricted. You may be in for destruction, separation anxiety, crying, barking, or other behaviours during your home renovations.

It’s hard for any pet parent to see their pet stressed. And while you should avoid it as far as possible their safety should always remain your top priority.

If there’s any risk of pets escaping or getting hurt during renovations, your primary responsibility is to protect them. Even if that means some sulking and dissatisfaction in the short term.

Be sure to schedule playtime for dogs and cats every day, to ensure they can get rid of any pent-up energy.

you have to crate train a puppy if you want to fly with them. This border collie is relaxed in his crate waiting to travel

3. Home renovation safe spaces

If possible, arrange a dedicated space to keep your pet calm during home renovations. This could be a bathroom, bedroom, or perhaps a garage. For puppies who’ve had crate training, a crate works wonders in this type of situation.

Try selecting an area of the house that’s protected from the noise as well as from the coming and going of strangers. This way your pet won’t need to be disturbed by workers toing and froing every five minutes.

Make your pet’s temporary den as safe and attractive as you can. Complete it with water, food, toys, treats, and a litter box if needed.

If your pet is the anxious type, here are some calming products that might help:

If you find this solution just isn’t working out, you may need to consider giving your pet an offsite remedy…

Give your pet a safe space during home renovations

4. Send pets on holiday

If home renovations are simply too stressful for your pet or the construction is very extensive you might need to remove your pet from the situation entirely.

Have a read-up on kennels vs pet sitters to get moving on decisions around what holiday pet care would best suit your pet. You might decide doggy daycare or puppy school is a good daytime option, but it may be a longer term kennel or cattery is what’s needed. Unless you have a family member, neighbour, or close friend willing to pet sit while you get the home renovations finished distraction-free.

If your cat or dog tends to be a bit nervous or anxious around other sin their home, a short holiday might be the best solution for them and you. Thought the anxiety may be worse in a home-away-from-home. Of course, as always, you know best! Decide what option will suit your pet.

5. Give pets time to adapt

Once you’re through the home renovations tunnel and have reached the light on the other side, consider your pet. Depending on how extensive the alterations are, your cat or dog may need time to adapt to their new surroundings.

If there have been lots of changes, the environment will likely sound, feel, and smell different to your pet. Let them explore their new and improved home as if they’ve just moved in. Which they sort of have!

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Keep their water, food, and bedding in their original spots. You can always rearrange where these essential items go, once your pet is completely at home in the new space.
  • If you have new entrances and exits, demonstrate by walking through them and encourage pets to do the same beside you.
  • If they’re not allowed in any new/changed areas, be firm, clear, and consistent about training them. They don’t understand the difference, so you’ll need to be patient.

While we’re on the topic of pet safety, also find out how to keep pets safe during pest treatments.

Try keep your pet's schedule during home renovations

Show your pet love during home renovations

For most pets, the primary signifier of home and safety is you. Unless you’re sending them to a trusted friend or all-expenses-paid holiday, be sure to remain calm while in their presence.

And because home renovations tend to make everything feel different, stay on course with your pet’s usual schedule wherever possible. As much as you can, keep to the usual mealtimes and playtimes.

Be sure to give lots of loving reassurance too; read these 10 ways to love your pet for some tips to make this easy.

Pet insurance for protection during home renovations and more

Home renovations or not, keep your furry family members safe and happy with your choice of three affordable pet insurance plans. Our online pet plans are easy to use for added peace of mind in times of medical need.

Share on :