Whether you have been eager to own a pet for many years or decide to welcome a pet into your home on a whim, you need to do a lot to prepare for the arrival of your furry friend. We interviewed designers and they shared their tips for preparing spaces for active cats or dogs without sacrificing their own style.
Prepare for chaos
Adopt a dog that is still training in the toilet? "Roll up your carpet in the first few months," suggested designer Michelle Gage. "Of course, this is troublesome, but so is the removal of puppy accidents from your brand new carpet."
Designer Lina Galvao said that washable and indoor/outdoor carpets are also recommended. You also need to cover other furniture surfaces-Gage recommends putting a blanket on the sofa and any distinctive chair. "Although the fabric may be durable enough to withstand the claws of animals, it is a good way to prevent hair from entering."
Designer Kelsey Haywood (Kelsey Haywood) recommends paying attention to household items where pets are easily caught by their paws—for example, she says, possible culprits include looped carpets, rope decorations, and leather carpets. Before welcoming furry friends into your space, it may be worthwhile to store them out of sight or list them for sale.
"I have seen a cat who likes to sharpen its paws completely tear up the carpet," she shared.
“When designing around a pet, I always keep one thing in mind—beyond cleanability and durability, of course—the color of their fur,” designer Caitlin Murray says. “Most animals shed and the pieces that make a space feel coziest and most complete, like sofas, bedding, draperies, and rugs, often fall victim to that unwanted fuzz.”
You’ll want to select a fabric color and material that won’t draw attention to your cuddly golden retriever’s bright blonde fur. “To reupholster my couch, I just ordered a textural black and white woven acrylic linen that’s suitable for indoor and outdoor use—and hides the fur of my new Dalmatian puppy," Murray shares.
And don’t feel like you can’t still make your space nice and glam. Designer Amala Raj adds, “Velvet is a great fabric to use in your decoration because it’s very low pile and easy to wipe clean of pet hair and dirt.”
Be Cautious With Plants
Some of your favorite green friends may actually be detrimental to your pet’s health. Sites such as Bloomscape allow customers to filter plant selections by a number of parameters, including pet-friendliness. And when you do select a safe plant, you may wish to style it so that it’s high up, Bloomscape’s Plant Mom Joyce Mast advises.
“If you need a plant that’s out of paw’s reach, consider a vining plant,” she says. “They are perfect for hanging baskets, placing them on a shelf or top of the cabinet, and allowing the vines or ‘runners’ to spill over the edge of the pot.
Select Furniture Accordingly
You’ll want to choose furniture that both accommodates your lifestyle and your pup’s, Raj adds. She suggests opting for metal furniture legs instead of wooden ones, which can be tempting for dogs to chew on.
Additionally, establishing a system for keeping pet toys out of sight when guests stop by will be key, Raj notes. “I love storage ottomans and benches for this reason.”
Just skip anything boucle, interior stylist Dominique Gebru notes. “My pups love to ‘dig’ in our sofa, presumably to find the comfiest spot,” she explains. “Any fabric with a tighter weave is a good idea, and bonus points if it's easy to clean.”