From Innovative Remodels to Simple Daybeds, Here’s Our Guide to Building a Pet-Friendly Kitchen
Sunset-approved kitchen additions to make your furry friends feel like a part of the family.
It seems inevitable that three of the preoccupations that have kept people busy and sane at home over the last year—adopting pets, cooking, and re-decorating their houses—would eventually intersect in a perfect storm of a home design trend. The experts at Wren, a kitchen design firm based in England with factories throughout the United States, have locked into the zeitgeist by offering practical design solutions for building (you guessed it) the perfect pet-friendly kitchen.
While owning a pet might not be new to you, preparing three meals a day at home with dogs and cats under foot might be. Giving your pals a safe and comfortable spot to hang out in the most-used room in the house has become a priority for many people. A deep dive into pet-centric home improvements can turn up any number of genius ideas like built-in pocket gates, murphy beds, under-stair kennels and dedicated dog showers. But there are easier ways to create an organized and durable kitchen for every member of your family, even the ones with four legs.
Create a Nook
If you can spare the under-counter cabinet space, Wren designers suggest replacing storage space with a cut-out nook built to house a bed and a shelf to store bowls, treats, and extra food (away from household cleaners and chemicals that may be stored under the sink).
Try Scratch-Resistant Flooring
Polished or softer wood is going to take a beating with claw marks. Wood floors with a low-sheen finish are more resistant to scratches, but the Wren designers suggest using tiles which are durable and easy to clean. Consider a dark grout like charcoal or block that doesn’t reveal stains or spills from wear and tear. Adding a rug for softness and warmth? Choose one that you can throw in the washing machine.
Choose Easy-to-Clean Surfaces
Glossy paint on kitchen cabinets reveals scratches and scuff marks faster than satin finishes, which are washable with soap and water.
If It’s out of the Kitchen, Still Keep It Cute
In this vintage issue of Sunset from February 1959, we walk readers through how to build this stylish outdoor doghouse. Make one for your backyard so your pet has a nice spot to relax when guests are over and outside; then scale it down to make an indoor version that fits in a corner or against a bare wall.
Match Your Pet Accessories to Your Decor
When a quick kitchen remodel isn’t in the cards, a simpler way to make your kitchen a cozy and stylish place for your pet would be to find accessories—from terrazzo-print dog beds to A-frame pet houses—that coordinate with your home’s design aesthetic. Check out some of our picks for easy pet-friendly kitchen accessories below!
Large Wicker Basket Dog Bed
The hand-made charm of this Amish basket would look right at home in a coastal cottage kitchen.
Harry Barker Grain Sack Dog Bed
If you’ve got a bleached-oak, white marble kitchen vibe, a classic French striped dog bed will fit right in.
Terrazzo Rectangle Dog Bed
Mid-century modern fans might love this terrazzo print bed, which also comes in lighter color ways.
Sliding Barn Door Pet Crate
Every modern farmhouse kitchen needs one of these tiny pet stables.
Modern Wooden Dog House
A-frame lovers get involved. This dog pyramid has real boho-chic potential.
Modern Dog House with Acrylic Door
Minimalists who shudder at the site of a standard-issue kennel should consider this handmade option from Etsy.
Stallworth Dog Sofa with Cushion
For tropical bungalow energy, just add a few bold floral pillows to this rattan dog sofa.
Kaylor Mid Century Modern Dog Sofa
A cozy spot to kick back and watch Animal Planet, this dog bed from Wayfair is a good fit for houses with boutique hotel dreams.
Elevated Ceramic Tilt Food Bowl With Wood Holder
While you’re at it, upgrade the food bowls with this chic ceramic and wood option from Top Love Pets.
Ceramic Food Bowl with Anti-Slip Bamboo Wood Stand
Or this one in chic teal green.
Customizable Two Bowl Feeder with Storage
Finally, this clever feeding and storage station is a great pre-made solution for stream-lining the clutter of pet gear.
Read the 2021 Wellness Issue
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