The kitchen is the heart of the home, and many of our custom kitchens in Liverpool are designed with families in mind. However, if you have young children or pets, it’s vital to take all the necessary safety precautions to make sure you and your loved ones, both human and furry, are not at risk of coming to harm in the kitchen. Here are a few of our essential tips for kitchen safety with children and pets.
Consider an open-plan layout
Ideally, children and pets should be kept out of the kitchen wherever possible, as there are far too many opportunities for accidents and injuries. However, banning them from the kitchen completely isn’t always practical, as there will be times when you’ll have to try and keep an eye on them while you’re cooking.
An open-plan layout is a sensible solution, as your kitchen and living area become one continuous space, offering you an unobstructed view of everything that’s going on. The less dark corners, doorways, nooks and crannies you have to deal with in and around your kitchen, the less chance of your children and pets coming to harm.
Think about the materials in your kitchen
Safety should always be at the forefront of your mind when planning a kitchen that’s going to be used by small children or animals. Any large expanses of glass are out of the question, and all kitchen worktops and appliances should be made from materials that are unlikely to get too hot while you’re cooking – little hands and paws will always want to explore.
You should also choose your flooring carefully – polished stone is probably not a sensible choice, as you should be looking for a non-slip surface that offers a degree of cushioning in case of any falls. Vinyl or cork make ideal flooring choices for households with kids and pets.
Install childproof latches on all cabinet doors and drawers
Children and animals are naturally curious creatures, and if they see mum and dad with something, there’s a good chance they’ll want to know what it’s all about. Many regular household items found in kitchens, such as cleaning products, can be extremely harmful to children and pets, even in very small quantities. They should always be locked away in a high-level cupboard beyond the reach of any small creatures!
Installing childproof latches on your cabinet doors is an easy solution to this problem. Equally, don’t forget to fit latches to drawers, too – knives and other utensils should be locked safely away.
Take precautions while cooking
You should always make sure that your cooking equipment is in good working order for maximum safety. Tighten any loose handles on pans, to minimise the risk of anything heavy or hot being dropped or spilling. If the handles can’t be fixed, it’s time to invest in a new set of pans.
Where possible, use the back burners rather than the front ones for cooking, as this makes it less likely that a toddler will be able to reach up and grab the handle of a pan, potentially causing a horrific accident by pulling a pan down from the cooker.
Always keep a first-aid kit and a fire extinguisher in the kitchen – you never know when either of these things might be needed, and acting fast is essential to keep those you love safe and healthy.
HB Kitchens designs bespoke fitted kitchens in Liverpool for families with pets and children of all ages. We’re happy to discuss your requirements with you – please get in touch if you’d like a safe and beautiful kitchen in your home.