Q: I have two cats and a lot of decorating ideas I can't really use, because they will inevitably knock things over or claw at them. At the very least most things will wind up covered in fur. Any tips or advice for keeping a pretty house while taking care of friendly beasts?
A friend of mine has been moving the cat's litter box from room to room trying to find the perfect place for it. With little kids around, she didn't want it in the bathroom, already crowded with a stepstool and the potty. She doesn't like the idea of having it in the kitchen. Bedrooms were out, as was the dining room. One day she woke up inspired and followed through. The other night, she showed off her ingenious solution to me.
As a cat or dog owner, most of us are resigned to live with a perpetual layer of animal fur on all of our clothing and upholstery (aka, the pet tax). But MAKE's DIY maestro, Mark Frauenfelder, wasn't going to stand for it any longer, calling on the services of an Arduino with a proximity sensor combined with a cymbal-bashing monkey to scare the whiskers off would-be couch intruders (ha!)...
I'll admit it; I love cats. Who doesn't really? Nothing brightens up a home like a cat. Whether it's waking you up in the morning by sitting on your head, or running around like a maniac chasing invisible mice, or somehow managing to find that one ray of light streaming in through your window to take a nap in the sun (who does that?), cats really are lovable.
Q: I have two big (65 pounds each) dogs who have tons of energy, and not much discretion when it comes to the things they will play with. They love to grab anything within reach (which is surprisingly high) and run around the house with it. Therefore, our home decor is relatively spartan, and any surface below chest high is bare. Does anyone have any tips on designing around two big dogs? I don't need a ton of knick knacks, but I wish our house didn't seem so bare. Thanks!
Yet another reason to love Ikea: the German locations recently opened "Dog Parking," where shoppers can leave their dogs on individual patches of green astro-turf with water bowls. In Australia Ikea opened a more controversial "Manland" where shoppers can leave men in a lounge area complete with games, hotdog snacks and TVs.
What would a house sitter want you to know before you place your home and pets in their hands? I share some things I've learned in five years of professional house sitting that just might help you if you've got plans to travel this summer.