Animal-Proof Phones, Laptops & More: How To Protect Your Technology From Pets

Last month wasn’t the best time for my PC. The fur buildup from my newly adopted dog had clogged my CPU’s power supply unit (PSU) ventilation, leading to a completely fried system that suddenly didn’t boot one fine day. Although I cleaned my processor regularly, I had no idea that the loss of fur would force me to clean more frequently.

When I ordered a new power unit and started taking my build apart to replace the part, I realized things had to change in the house. And not just for the PC I was reviving, but for all the tech stuff I had lying around. Of course, the best course of action to protect your tech from pets and keep it safe from your furry friends is proper training and domestic discipline.

But for those who are still getting there, and for people who are completely new to pets or just brought home a pandemic animal, here are a few things you can do to make sure your pet doesn’t destroy. not accidentally your expensive gadgets.

Desktops and consoles

The best way to protect a desk is to make sure it is placed at a sufficient height. If your setup is on a table away from the animal’s reach, they are unlikely to care. However, there are two very important things you still need to take care of – cable management and fur buildup.

Use cable ties, sleeves, and duct tape to manage your cables as neatly as possible. Inexpensive accessories like cable sleeves will cover your cables and keep them organized. There are lots of ideas and inspirations out there on the web for how to effectively manage your cables based on your setup.

The best thing you can do to protect your fur components is to clean them regularly. While your monitor, mouse, and speakers can be simply wiped down with a clean, dry cloth, your processor and keyboard may need special attention.

how to protect your pet technology, pet technology, how to protect pet technology, Desktops are most vulnerable to fur due to airflow in CPU cabinets, but you can prevent damage by cleaning them regularly. (Image source: The Indian Express / Chetan Nayak)

Keep your keyboard covered when not in use to minimize fur buildup. If you have a mechanical keyboard with replaceable keycaps, periodically remove all your keycaps and wipe them dry.

For the processor, you can cover it when not in use and clean it once every few days. Once a week, open your cabinet to inspect any build-up on the mesh and dust filters near the air intakes. You can even try repositioning your processor or your entire setup so that the fur doesn’t easily gather around. But remember not to negatively affect the cooling of your system by barricading the air inlet.

Keep in mind that this is not the fur itself, but a cooling failure due to fur buildup in key areas which is harmful to your CPU and its components.

Smartphones and tablets

We are heavily dependent on our smartphones and tablets and their security should be a priority. If you have a dog or cat, you don’t want those sharp claws accidentally testing the device’s Gorilla Glass abilities. Invest in a screen protector or tempered glass to cover your phone screen.

how to protect your technology, pet technology, how to protect pet technology, Smartphones are at risk of being dropped when pets are nearby, but they can also be bitten or scratched. (Express photo)

It’s also a good idea to invest in a good, sturdy case, at least for the first few months when pets are known to be exceptionally unruly. Phones and tablets can fall off a table due to a running dog or a jumping cat. But your friend can also jump on you while using these devices, causing you to fall. You can also get a case for your tablet if no case is available.

If you have a fur issue (which you will in most cases) consider getting some inexpensive dust caps to cover the open ports on your phone / tablet. You can find jacks for USB-C ports and 3.5mm headphone ports on Amazon India for less than Rs 500. These could save you a lot more money down the line.

Above all, get in the habit of leaving your phones and tablets in hard-to-reach areas. Make sure your charge adapters are high enough on the wall and cables do not hang loose when not in use.

Smart televisions

You catch up with your favorite show and your dog comes running in front of your TV, and as your 55 inch binging source drops to death. You start to think about what you could have done to avoid this. Okay, it was a nightmare. But you are still afraid of the possibilities.

First, wall mounting your TV is the best thing you can do for your TV. Apart from providing better aesthetics, the TV is also unlikely to be run over by a dog running around the house.

how to protect your technology, pet technology, how to protect pet technology, TVs that are closer to the ground are more likely to come in contact with an animal running around. (Express photo)

But if wall mounting isn’t an option, invest in a sturdy table high enough to protect your TV. If you’re in a rush, you can even use clear tape or double-sided tape to secure the TV’s feet to the surface it’s placed on.

Take care of any hanging cables and make sure there are no loose ends. You will also need to regularly clean your TV on the front, sides, and back to remove any buildup of fur and dust. Try to do this at least once a week. For port protection, you can just get a few dust caps designed for any open USB, HDMI, or other port.

As for the remote, consider getting an inexpensive wall mount (or do it yourself) to keep the device safe and away from the animal.

Laptop

If you haven’t already, get a foam case for your laptop and keep it safe inside when not in use. When using the laptop, try to stick to a desk and not your ottoman, where interference is more likely. Keep liquids and drinks away from your machine if your pet is nearby.

Train your pet to help them understand that you don’t like to be disturbed while you are working. Believe me, your pet is smarter than you think and could pick it up quickly. Have other family members spend time with the animal when you work, and if you live alone, give them a few toys to play with during the time.

Remember to take short breaks between your work / play hours to spend time with your boyfriend.

how to protect your pet technology, pet technology, how to protect pet technology, The best place for your laptop is inside a sleeve or drawer when not in use. (Express photo)

With laptops, you will have to step up your cleaning game compared to phones or televisions, as fur can build up in many more areas, and the irreversible damage that will ensue can be very costly to repair. Areas to watch include your keyboard and the spaces between keys, ventilation, and ports.

You can use a keyboard membrane to protect the keyboard from fur and dust. They are inexpensive and you can find one for almost all popular laptop models online. For the port, you can get the dust caps that we mentioned above. If you still have open USB ports, just insert an old USB drive instead of keeping it open.

Remember to keep your charging cable safe when not in use and when your laptop is charging. Make sure it is as close to the power source and away from the animal as possible. Never load your laptop on a table away from the power source and leave a grapple line. Because your pet can trip over it, the laptop can crash. Or they might mistake it for a toy and decide to chew, which is not safe for them either.

Headphones, headphones and accessories

Remember to protect your audio products, portable devices and other small accessories. You can do this by keeping them away and cleaning them regularly if necessary. Pay special attention to small parts like TWS headphones or replaceable silicone tips as your pet may swallow them. If this happens, see your vet immediately.

You can also get or make yourself a technical organizer. A small bag with neat slots to store all your little technologies. This will keep everything safe from a bored and curious pet. This will make it easier for you to find things.

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