As members of our families, pets come with their own needs, desires, and stuff.
Pets have stuff. Whether cat, dog, bird, hamster, fish...
We have food, treats, toys, pee/poo systems (litter boxes, poo bags, pooper scoopers, filtration systems, hay, wood shavings, etc.), leashes, collars, pills, syringes, special thermometers, shampoos, grooming tools, lint rollers, beds, matts, blankets, crates, tanks, fur shields for furniture and cars ... could go on and on.
Where do we start when it comes to keeping it all organized?
From throughout your home, including attic and garage, gather all things pet related.
There may be a dog pen, cat crate, or empty fish tank in the far corners of your garage or attic that haven't been used in years. Gather it all.
Ask yourself what you actually use. You want to keep those items that either you and your pet love or are extremely helpful. Those items that are not, we want to set aside to part with.
- Are there treats, foods, or toys your pets don't like? Set them aside to donate or throw away.
- Are there medicines or edibles that have expired? Throw them away.
- Are there systems you don't use (and probably won't)? Throw out, donate, or sell.
For those items you decide to keep, clean them up.
You might also realize you have items that you need but you don't like seeing them in your space (like a grungy dog bed). For these kinds of items, consider finding replacements that you would love to see in your space - and that perhaps improve in functionality (like being easier to clean).
As you're simplifying, you might like to consider those items that can be donated. There are many places that appreciate donations of items you and your pets don't like or need. Visit their sites below to see the kinds of supplies on their wish list and to get the hours they're open to receive donations:
Set these items aside and immediately set a time to deliver them. Go ahead and put it on your calendar. Give it a time slot, whether that day or another.
Otherwise, it's easy to have a pile of donation items sitting around for a month or even half a year. Yes, that happens.
organize + CONTAIN // organizational Design
Once you've narrowed all your pet supplies down to the essentials, consider where you need what.
- CONVENIENCE // What are the items that you need every day?
- Assign to a convenient location for the specific need the items meet.
- Examples: food, water, leashes, poo bags, litter boxes
- DESIGN // Are there some items you need every day but prefer not to see out?
- Assign to easily accessible spots that keep items out of sight.
- Consider creative alternatives that you don't mind seeing in your space:
- Consider new plans that might help you minimize:
- Training cats to pee and poo in the toilet so you don't need litter, litter boxes, or the regular practice of scooping and cleaning around litter boxes (check out the litter kwitter)
- You will begin to see that baskets, bins, drawers, hooks, shelves, cabinets, and closets really are your friends. They help to contain the stuff and give it a place to belong, thus steering longterm organizational practices.
- If pet supplies are out and loose, choose a basket, bin, or tray for them.
- If pet supplies are in a drawers, consider drawer organizers to help maintain order in your drawer
- LAY AWAY // Are there some items you need less regularly?
- Assign to a less convenient spot