I have two cats. Many of my clients have pets as well – cats, dogs, guinea pigs, rabbits, birds, even chickens.
Pets can cause almost as much clutter as children. What can we do to help organize this clutter?
Food – Designate one area to store your pets’ food. Restrict your buying so that you do not have more food than will fit in that space. If you have dry food, it is a good idea to store the food in plastic containers. This helps keep the food fresh and keeps bugs out of the food. If you use cans of food, make sure you rotate the food, putting the most recently purchased food in the back.
Litter and bedding or cage material – Designate one area to store these materials and do not buy more material than will fit in this area.
Grooming materials – Keep these together in a container near where you use them. If you groom your pets while you are sitting on the sofa, have your materials stored nearby.
Meds – Keep pet meds in one container and have it well labeled. This might be in your kitchen area or in your bathroom.
Leads, leashes, and “poop bags” – Store these near the door. They can hang on hooks or roll up in a drawer or container.
Treats – Store them where you use them. Keep backups in one area of your pantry so that you know at a glance how many types and the amount you have.
Toys – Toys get scattered throughout the house as the pets play with them. Have one container to toss them in when cleaning. I like to keep only a few toys active at a time while others are held in reserve in a closet to rotate out when the pets get bored.
Time – Pets take extra time so you will need to reorganize your schedule to accommodate them. Allow time for walks or play time, time for grooming, time for cleaning litter boxes or cages, time for feeding and refreshing water. Put these tasks on a regular schedule and you won’t have to worry about when to do them.
Living with pets, like living with children, means that your home will rarely be perfect. Accept that and know that this is just part of the price you pay for the enjoyment of your animal friends.
Jonda S. Beattie Professional Organizer