While many of us may be grumbling over recommendations to stay home and limit social interactions, our dog, Lilo, is reveling in the company. She usually stays home alone while we are at work, and she has left physical signs to notify us of her disapproval.

Now considered a senior dog, I like to think that she is just more mature and confident enough to express her feelings. Unfortunately, her expressions have included things like accidents on the area rugs and holes in the screen doors.

If you have a pet that feels the same, try to use the time hunkering down to prepare your home for the inevitable time when things go back to “normal.”



Nothing gets the smell out of carpets and rugs like a deep, steam cleaning. Not only should you be cleaning for a healthy home anyway, but cleaning can also help to prevent future accidents. Pets are more likely to mark previously soiled areas.


Don’t expect an accident-free home later on. Anticipate the accidents. Choose stain-resistant carpets and rugs or Scotchgard what you have. If you are in the market for a new rug, opt for indoor/ outdoor versions that you can hose off easily. There are also machine-washable rugs that fit inside your washer.

Think about protecting your pet as well as your home. Move hazardous materials up and out of reach.

These include items like insecticides, batteries, sharp utensils, string, floss or other items that could be choking hazards.



If you have a fenced yard or lanai, consider giving your pet the option to use it during the day. Windows Hawaii’s Freedom+ In-Glass Pet Doors are installed in sliding patio or swinging French doors. They are perfectly sized for pets to come and go as they please. For us, this means fewer marks and dirt on our doors from Lilo scratching to get out.


When the winds start gusting, pets are likely to get spooked and may try to escape. If your yard is not fenced already, consider adding one. Make sure the posts are close enough that your pet cannot fit through. If you have a fence, inspect the perimeter for any areas that your pet might fit, including underneath.

Install no-dig pet barriers at the bottom to close the gaps. Avoid using rocks, bricks or dirt, as these can be moved. Also, make sure that the gate leading into your yard can be physically locked. Install smart security cameras so that you can get notifications of activity in the area as well.

Have a comment or question for Joanne? Email thefixisinhawaii@gmail.com.