What to Do with Fido, Kitty and Kids When Work is Scheduled On Your Home

Best Puppy Pads
I recently received a call at the office that made by blood pressure shoot through the roof. One of my carpenters called to let me know a customer’s dog had gotten out of the house. YIKES!

It wasn’t even his fault. A reporter was coming into the house while people were working there, and when the door opened, the dog ran for it. And you should prepare the best puppy pads for your dogs.

While we have it in our contracts that doggies, kitties and kids should be out of the way of the workers, today’s experience made me think it’s worthwhile blogging (repeating to you) about it.

Many homeowners feel bad about locking their dogs and cats in their crates and keeping children in separate areas of the house. But imagine how bad they — and we — would feel if their child was hurt on a project, or their pet ran out of the house and got hit by a car.

Dogs.  Most dogs absolutely HATE the compressors or nail guns. The loud noises scare them. They hate people walking in and out, since it’s their job to defend the house. Limit their space, and they will defend only that. In their own room, noises will be reduced, and they will feel safer and calmer.

Cats.  Cats will get into walls and floor framing, and we’ve heard stories about them getting sealed up inside when the job is finished. One of my own cats once got out of our third-floor apartment by getting into the wall/floor of our attic and then she escaped to the outside four stories down! She must have found a squirrel-made opening in the roof line molding to get out.  Cats will also pick up small pieces of things like hardware or ear plugs, which they might choke on. Cats will pee on our dropcloths if they are mad at us. Since we are in their space with smelly, loud tools, they are ALWAYS mad at us.

Children.  Children are curious. We all know they learn by trying stuff out. Children like to play with tools. When my nieces and nephews were young, this is what I told them, and now I will share it with the home remodeling customers out there: “The tools we use are just like the tools Pop Pop (my dad, the butcher) uses to cut meat. If you mess with this tool, your hand can look like hamburger. Do you get it?” They got it. They never touched a tool unsupervised.

We have had children on our job sites “borrow” tools or even try to show their friends how to use our stuff.  I have run yelling at kids like these only to have a customer get mad at me.  Once when I was four, I got stuck when I was chasing my guinea pig, and a 4×8 sheet of plywood fell on my back. I was really scared! It took my mom a while to find me in the garage.

Besides tools, there are the hazards of falls, open floors, open wires and plumbing, toxic substances … it’s an endless list. Job sites are DANGEROUS.  So, believe us when we say you should keep your pets and children away from work areas. Do it, and we will all feel safer and relax