Dawn M. Smith
A pet industry that earns close to 60 billion dollars a year makes a huge statement about how owners feel about their animals. We love our pets like they’re furry humans, which means we want their company even if it means they shed, chew, and stain, our lovely house. This causes quite the dilemma for those of us who also happen to enjoy a stylish and pretty place to call home.
Don’t worry, there are ways to marry the love for pets and the love for home décor that will make the whole family happy.
Use pet friendly fabrics.
Pets today lounge on beds, couches, and just about anywhere a person would find comfy. You’ll need to find coverings that are washable and/or stain resistant.
- Consider the color of your pet’s fur to mask more shedding. Ultrasuede is a great, washable choice.
- Customize pillows and furniture with cleanable fabric from Sunbrella or Crypton. Popular designers like Trina Turk have created fabrics that are pretty to look at and easy to maintain.
Paint with eggshell or satin finishes.
All pets make messes, especially around their food dishes and entry ways to the home. Painting with a durable product will make clean up much easier.
- Avoid flat finishes or high gloss paint. The flat won’t clean well and the gloss will show every imperfection like dog drool or bird droppings.
- White paint is not your friend with pets in the home. Be creative and choose colors that hide stains easily.
Buy or build a creative crate.
For years, unattractive wire metal or plastic crates were the only options for a four legged pet. Today, chain stores and smart DIYers have mastered the art of camouflaging a crate in attractive ways.
- Pull double duty and purchase a crate that also acts like an end table.
- Checkout the masterful ways pet owners have built crates for the pets: under the stairs, in the kitchen, and in mudrooms.
Pay attention to pet and human accessories.
An antique collection of heirloom jade ware won’t last long on a low profile coffee table. Any small collection is at risk of destruction when tails and paws are active. Focus on wall features to avoid sad accidents.
- Black and white photography is always on trend.
- Hang and display any linen you love, but won’t sacrifice to potential pet vomit.
Toys, beds, food dishes, and other pet accessories need not be chewed and plastic. There are many new options to keep their good look going for a long time.
- Try stainless food bowls, they’re easily cleaned and better looking than plastic. Baskets are inexpensive toy boxes.
- Cute hooks, door knobs, or other hangars keep leashes and collars tidy.
- Pet beds can also be upholstered in durable fabric that matches the room’s décor.
Regular bathing and grooming help control the amount of fur and feathers flying and toenails scratching.
Pet owners don’t have to sacrifice their own style for the functionality of owning an animal. Small changes like the ones above will make pets and humans more comfortable and happy.