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Little things mean a lot

When decorating in a rustic mode it is often the little things that do more to support the decorating theme than we usually imagine. A case in point is my ‘honey-do’ project from last weekend… we share our home with two cats and one v-e-r-y large Great Pyrenees “puppy”. One of those creatures is a grocery thief; care to guess which one?

Our polar bear-looking pooch is less than two years old but she weighs in at 100 pounds and is a sight to behold when standing erect on her hind legs. At this size, there aren’t many places below eye level that she can’t reach, especially if she smells food – and especially if the two-legged residents aren’t around. My project was assigned to me by my bride because the cat’s food was mysteriously disappearing, but they were always hungry – and seemed to be losing weight. I was charged with the task of creating a feeding station for the cats that would be out of reach of the dog. The most obvious solution (to me), and one that involved the least amount of work (from me), was to begin feeding them on top of the refrigerator, but that idea didn’t receive much support from my bride.

As luck would have it, I caught the cat food thief in the process of her despicable act and a solution to the problem was revealed. We were placing the cat’s food bowls on top of a counter in our laundry room. The thief could just barely reach the bowls with her paw and drag them to the edge of the counter where she could dine on fresh tuna and liver.

To make the bowls Pyr-proof, all I needed to do was raise the bowls a few inches and anchor them so that they could not be moved. I built a simple shelf with cut-outs to hold the bowls and secured it to the wall over the splash board of the counter. Go here to read Go here to read the rest of the story…

The cool thing about this project was that it was built from scrap boards, and about $0.90 worth of materials. The end result was a dog-proof feeding station for the kittens disguised as a decorating accent that compliments the rest of the house. I finished the feeding station with a natural Minwax stain to seal the pores, and rubbed in a few coats of thick wax. When completed, the way this austere shelf blends into our décor looks as if I hired an interior decorator.

The ironic thing was that complimenting our décor was not a consideration. My mission was to dog-proof the cat’s food area and I didn’t care if the answer was barbed wire or something hanging from the chandelier. Now, if I can just figure out a way to design the litter box as a rustic accent, I could find my picture on the cover of TIME magazine!

Get more details about our project and see the pics of our pet feeding station here.

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