niches below a bookshelf converted into recessed dog beds
Photo: Mark Lohman
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Pet-Bed Cubby

If TV's "Dog Whisperer" has taught us anything, it's that every pooch should be put in its place—a cozy place, that is. These cubbies-in-a-bookshelf are a clever alternative to pet beds that take up floor real estate. Built into a niche, the custom piece has a 24-inch-deep nook for Sam (left) and Benny, topped by narrower shelves for books and keepsakes. You can easily modify any bookcase that's at least 15 inches deep to accommodate your four-legged friend; just remove one or two of the bottom shelves. Don't forget to toss in a pillow for how it turns the kitchen into the true hearth of their home.

TOH Tip: Secure the modified bookcase to the wall so that it doesn't topple over when your dog or cat crawls in.
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