Create A Canine Command Center

Our coat closet door before our organizational makeover. You can see that the two over-the-door hangers were sturdy. While they could hold a number of our bags and one coiled lead, we were not maximizing our vertical space on that door.

Our condo seems to overflow with dog products. When we just had Bernie, keeping track of his accessories was somewhat manageable. But when we brought Lizzie home in May, we found ourselves misplacing leashes, leads, treats, and toys.

The chaos was not working for my OCD or Matthew's, so I started eyeballing our coat closet.

We had two sturdy over-the-door hangers that helped us organize several of our shopping bags, my yoga mat, sun hat, and Bernie's coiled 33-foot training lead. Depending on how I re-arranged the items, I could also fit my backpack on these hooks.

But we were clearly not maximizing our use of the vertical space.

After browsing the Container Store website, I thought the elfa over-the-door system would do the trick.

Field trip to Shangri-La!

For just under $150, we purchased 11 items that work together creating our canine command center.

The over-the-door hooks easily snapped into place on the 77-3/4" Mounted Standard Platinum. I spent less than five minutes making sure that I had the vertical Mounted Standard placed appropriately on the door to accommodate the basket widths.

Adding the smaller utility board for the hooks was simple. I did run into problems trying to snap the more rounded utility basic hooks into place. I think it's possible that the package I opened may have had some quality control issue because the women at the Container Store seemed genuinely surprised that I couldn't get the hooks to stay in place. I exchanged the three packages of the basic hooks for the long board hooks and those popped right into place. No issues.

The mesh baskets also easily snapped onto the Mounted Standard. As I added various accessories to different baskets, I could easily adjust where the basket popped onto the Mounted Standard. Moving pieces around with elfa is easy.

11 Elfa system items from the Container Store purchased to create our canine command center. For just under $150, we found a simple solution for keeping track of everything we need to take Bernie and Lizzie outside for adventure time.

Our Organizational System

  • Hanging our shopping bags, my backpack, and the shorter leashes on the top hooks was a no brainer. We've been using this system for almost two months and the hooks have all stayed in place.
  • We can't make good use of the space behind all of the bags, but the second utility board comes in handy for the 33-foot training lead that's coiled up and our head lamp. When we take the pups out at night, we need to see the poops to bag them.
  • We chose the mesh baskets over the less expensive standard baskets just to ensure that nothing could easily fall out of the command center.
elfa utility large mesh basket platinum
elfa utility large basket platinum
  • In the smaller top mesh basket, we keep a few rolls of poop bags, collapsible water bowls, and our grooming brush and comb.
  • The next two larger mesh baskets contain paw wipes, our treat bag we take on every walk, and lots of extra treats, including bully sticks, bully twists, and braided bully twists.
  • The bottom mesh basket houses lots of miscellaneous dog accessories: Thunder Shirts, various Kongs and other treat puzzle toys, ear wipes, doggie dental care brushes and gauze, and paw balm.
Annotated photograph explaining how I used different Elfa system pieces for different dog accessories.

We're loving our Canine Command Center. Whether I need to take the pups out for a quick bathroom break or I'm gearing up for our daily adventure walk, all of the supplies I need are in one place.

The pups have quickly adapted to the new paradigm as well. We keep our recycling bin in the bottom of the hall closet, so any time either of us throws recyclables into the bin, Bernie pops his head up just to see if we're touching his leash.

How do you organize all of your dog accessories? Share your tips in the comments below.

Pet parents get organized! Create your own canine command center.