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Creating a Safe Environment for Your Pets

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The Benefits of Cordless Window Dressings

Well! All I’ve been hearing is pets this, and pets that! In the last couple of weeks, pets have been garnering an inordinate amount of attention, some heroic, some tragic! Not a huge fan of pets myself, I sometimes find it ridiculous that people go stark raving mad over their pets! I mean, not even parents do that with their kids, at least, not too many that I know of. It’s one thing to train pets to go fetch the newspaper every morning, quite another to have them groomed and sitting pretty in their own armchairs! And reading the news to them and using them as a sounding board for opinions! Screws are definitely loose there.

Here in Riverside, Windsor, there’s not a lot going on, life is pretty easy. Mrs. Drummond, my elderly neighbor, lost her husband not too long ago. It was inordinately sad to watch her, trying to be brave, missing him, and fearful of being alone. Though her kids were close by, she was never lonelier. And who could take the place of one’s life partner? Well, to say the least, she had a 3-year-old Tibetan spaniel who hardly ever left her side, and this was whom Mrs. Drummond had decided to pledge her troth to now. You would never see her without the pet in her arms, a tiny little thing was the pet! The only time they were separated was if Mrs. Drummond had to make the occasional drive anywhere; she had to leave the dog behind as Zelda got terribly car sick. Mrs. Drummond would take her evening strolls with Zelda in a toy baby walker, all groomed and looking proud, three bows on her bushy tail, her ears groomed, so they looked like they were twisted into a knot! Didn’t I read somewhere that this was a dangerous practice?? But the little dog would imperiously stare down her nose at any other pets ambling about, snarling if any of them came bounding at her!





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But little Zelda met her ignominious end just the other day, and a more distraught pet owner I am yet to come across! Mrs. Drummond had left the pet to go pick up some groceries. There were some old corded wooden blinds she had on her study windows that the dog tried to push her head through to catch that last glimpse of her mistress as she drove away, and somehow managed to entangle herself in the cords, which had tightened around her neck, resulting in strangulation! I got frantic calls from Mrs. Drummond once she got home, asking for my help in disentangling the little mite. As I ran to her bidding, the poor woman was inconsolable – Zelda’s eyes had rolled back into her head, bulging, with her tongue blue and sticking out of her tiny mouth, her body still warm, and her fur agleam in the afternoon sun!

I managed to snip the cords off, lifting her off and laying her on the soft cloth Mrs. Drummond had found. Staying by her side, I stroked her back as the old lady cried inconsolably. Finally, she told me to call her man Friday to come dig a little grave for the dog in her backyard. In addition, she wanted me to come back to help her get rid of the blinds around the house.

I was invited to the little ceremony she had for Zelda before her internment, after which she got me to promise that I would help her get safe window dressings. A few days later, I took my laptop across to her place and showed her the various safe options that were available on the market today, alongside which I showed her some accounts of pets rescuing people, pets getting hurt in grooming salons, and pets being rescued from getting euthanized!

Mrs. Drummond decided she’d go for cordless blinds, as technology was something she didn’t want to bother with. She told me that she was going to get another Tibetan from the same bloodline as Zelda, a brand new litter that was just born. And she wanted to ensure that no freak mishaps occurred again. This included getting rid of her old heavy and cumbersome drapes as well from the ground floor – since her husband’s death, she’d closed off the upper floor; she had a small bedroom downstairs that she had been using.

She needed to cover the windows of the bedroom, the study, the living and dining rooms that had French doors. And she didn’t want blinds in any form. She had pretty café curtains with a matching swag on her kitchen window; it was in good condition and did an excellent job of providing cover. Some of the cordless shades we came across were –
Cordless Roller shades
Cordless Cellular Shades and Pleated shades that included SunUp SunDown and PerfectVue Shades
Cordless Roman Shades

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As we scrolled through the options, Mrs. Drummond exclaimed, “Enough! I can’t take it anymore! You decide on something for me. Just remember that my old bones get really cold in winter, which was why I had drapes fitted along with those blinds.” So I decided on the perfect solution – the 2-inch Cordless PerfectVue Shades from Graber, which combined the sheer or light filtering pleated shade and the room darkening or blackout cellular shade in a single window covering, divided by a midrail that could be lifted or lowered so either shade could be deployed independently . And I chose the 1” PerfectVue shades for her French doors, as the panels weren’t very wide. One could just tug at the bottom rail to raise the shade up over the window, or pull it again if only the cellular shade was required, say at night. The pleated shade could be manipulated by tugging gently at the midrail. The cellular panels were all double-celled blackouts that protected her privacy and kept her rooms insulated, while the pleated panels were sheer enough to allow her to have a look outside without having to raise the entire shade over her window. Or she could have a combination of both. Either way, there were no cords to deal with, and the rooms looked lighter with the pastel woven fabric I’d chosen to blend with her period furniture and rugs, the wood wrapped rails offering a plush look to the entire window setup. I hope she’ll be comfortable enough to leave the little creature alone at home when she arrives.




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