10 House Hacks Every Pet Owner Needs to Know

From fluffy dogs to colorful parrots, animals bring a dose of happiness into our homes. But owning a pet has its challenges, and many time-constrained homeowners struggle to control pet hair, eliminate odors, and find a place to store food and accessories. Minimize the stress of pet ownership with these 10 genius hacks, and you’ll become an all-star pet parent in no time.

Hidden Litter Box

Hide a Litter Box

Cats need easy access to the litter box, but most homeowners don’t want to keep their feline’s toilet in plain sight. Eliminate the eyesore—and give your cat some privacy—by concealing the litter box in an old laundry hamper or small cabinet. Cut a cat-size door in the side so your kitty can come and go as needed. As an added bonus, the DIY litter box holder will help cut down on unwanted smells.

Related: 10 Astonishing Feats You Can Accomplish with Kitty Litter


Mess-Fighting Mat

Office Mat Under Bird Cage

Although parrots and other birds are beautiful pets that are loaded with personality, they tend to make a mess. Try placing an office mat underneath your birdcage to contain stray seed and droppings for easy cleanup.


Clever Kibble Storage

Put Pet Food in Plastic Pitcher

Those of us with four-legged friends would be well advised to store dry pet food in a large plastic pitcher. Not only will the container keep kibble fresh, but the ability to pour food directly into your pet’s bowl makes mealtime a breeze.

Related: The Best Organizers to Buy for Under $5, $15, and $25


Pet Hair Solution

Squeegee for Pet Hair

One of the biggest downsides of dog ownership is the never-ending collection of hair that piles up in the home. Eliminate fur from carpet and upholstery by scraping the surfaces with a squeegee. The bathroom tool keeps hair balls at bay, thus reducing common allergens.


DIY Critter Cage

DIY Critter Cage

If you can’t bring yourself to buy a critter cage from a pet store, make your own DIY version—either from scratch or by transforming an old shelving unit. Tutorials for homemade pet cages abound on the Internet, and most require little more than drilling holes and attaching glass fronts. The finished product will be more attractive than anything available at the store.

Related: 20 Insanely Easy Ways to Build Your Own Furniture

instructables.com user bizydad

Carpet Odor Killer

DIY Carpet Odor Powder

Unpleasant pet odors can seep into carpets, leaving a lingering scent in your home. To get rid of these pesky smells, whip up a DIY carpet powder to sprinkle on your floors whenever you vacuum for a boost of freshness. Check out One Good Thing by Jillee for a tutorial. 


Built-In Food Bowl

Built-In Pet Food Station

Pet bowls often slide around the floor during mealtime, spilling water and kibble everywhere. Put an end to the mess by constructing a built-in receptacle for the bowls. Simply cut bowl-size holes into a shelf, the bottom of a cabinet, or a bench. Alternatively, you can transform the bottom drawer of a dresser into a pet feeding station, using a piece of plywood as the base.

Related: Beyond the Brush: 7 Other Tools You Need to Refinish Furniture


Stylish Pet Bed

DIY Pet Bed

Instead of relying on a store-bought cushion, DIY your own dog bed with a few basic tools. You can decorate the bed to match your home's decor for a uniquely personalized touch. 


Carpet-Lined Cat Shelves

DIY Carpet-Lined Cat Shelves

Cats adore climbing and scratching, but all those acrobatics can be surprisingly destructive. Keep your feline from creating chaos and ruining furniture by making carpet-lined cat shelves. Your kitten will now be able to climb without consequence—and have a designated target for its claws!

Related: 16 New Things You Can Do with Old Furniture


Carpet Saver

Stop Pets from Trailing Mud

Whenever it rains, your dog will inevitably head for the muddiest part of the yard. To ensure that your canine doesn’t trail wet muck around your house, choose one entry door for use during inclement weather. Keep a towel and a heavy-duty doormat there, and train your dog to stay on the mat until you’ve wiped its paws. No more mud stains on the carpet!


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