Home Sweet Dog: The Little Things We Do to Make Life Comfortable for Fido

Dog on couch
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I cleaned my house a few days ago. As always, I stripped the dark brown sheet and towel off the couch so I could put them in the wash. Yes, the sheet and towel off the couch.

Sheeting up the couch is just one of many ways in which I’ve adapted our house and lifestyle to better suit our dogs. Cuddling with Millie and Olive on the couch is one of the best parts of the day, but the drawback is that Millie occasionally has — wait for it — anal leakage. The revolting stuff seeps out as she’s sleeping, and rather than having to get it off the couch itself, I decided that a towel with a sheet on top is an easy way to clean up if necessary. (Luckily it doesn't happen often.) Add Olive’s white hair to the brown-couch equation and you’ve got furniture that could end up pretty ratty-looking (and smelly), so the sheet solution works for us. Unfortunately, my family room seems a little low-rent when people show up unexpectedly.

I stopped to consider the other ways we’ve changed our home to make it work for our dogs. Years ago my husband noticed our aging Boxer slipping as he navigated the stairs, so he ran out and bought a cheap roll of carpet and installed it himself. It’s not the color and pile I would have chosen, but it served the purpose and kept Sumner from falling down and hurting himself. It's ugly, but I appreciate the heart behind it.

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