Irene’s Insights-Irene Woodworth

Irene’s Insights

Creative décor ideas for pet spaces

By Irene Woodworth

How do you incorporate your “furry, four-legged kids” in your home’s décor? As I have lived with our two small dogs, I have realized that there are challenges in keeping all of our pets’ belongings in an organized way to match our home décor. As I have visited various family and friends’ homes, it is interesting to see the variety of ways that others are meeting these challenges. Here are some creative solutions to incorporate your dog’s bed and belongings into your home.

One pet bed idea is to remove a cabinet door off of an end table and put your dog bed in the bottom of the cabinet. This may be a simple solution to address the need to keep your pet’s own cozy space, and the pet’s need to be near its owners.

How about using the often unused space under your staircase? This is an ideal way to hide away your pet’s crate or bed and still keep them nearby in their own sacred sanctuary. You can use the door that may already be there for storage or you can have one created in that wall. For a more formal design, you could change the door to a wrought iron gate, or add molding to match the room’s style.

For a more casual style, you may want to leave the opening without a door or create a whimsical façade dog house around the door facing. You could add the dog’s name above it and decorate the wall to include photos of your dog interacting with family members. Or just leave a simple door opening for your dog to come and go as needed. This little getaway is great for dogs that need their own space, while still allowing them to hear the sounds of family.

Another option is to use a regular-height table to hide your dog crates underneath. Depending on the size of your crates, you could put one to two crates underneath a sofa or hall table. Next put four curtain panels on four curtain tension rods. Install them underneath your table legs on all four sides. The fabric for your curtain panels can be in a solid color or pattern that matches your décor. These curtains will drape and cover up your dog crates as needed. Simply lift or slide the curtain away when you open the doors for your dogs. Placing baskets for all of their toys, leashes and fun dog food canisters keeps things nearby and simplifies storing the pets’ belongings in an organized manner.

Dog feeding area tips

Most of us usually put our dog bowls on the floor within easy sight in the kitchen or hallway. Keeping a placemat or a metal tray with a lip around the edge helps to keep the food area contained.

If you are limited on floor space for your pet’s eating area, use the bottom of a pull-out drawer to put their bowls inside. This will minimize any messes and give them a designated area for eating.

Find some fun dog canisters that can be used for “Fido’s” food and accessories in a style that matches the rest of the room. The more coordinated and organized your dog’s belongings are in your home, the more you will enjoy your “furry kid” without letting it overtake the house.

Irene Woodworth is known as “Idaho’s Color Lady” and is founder and CEO of Redesign Boise. She is a national redesign award winner, motivational speaker, certified redesigner and color consultant, and instructor on redesign and color. She has a degree in education and interior design and has taught various decorating and color classes throughout the country. For more information, visit

Idaho Family Magazine