How to Dog Proof Your Furniture

How to Dog Proof Your Furniture

If you own a dog, you know your furniture sometimes takes a beating.  From muddy pawprints to scratches, tears, and even a few chomp marks on table legs and chairs, your furniture bears evidence that you are a pet friendly home.  Still, you love your dog, and you don’t want to kick them off your furniture altogether.  You’d much prefer to find a way to dog-proof your furniture.

Is this even possible?

There are many things that dog owners can do to keep their furniture in good condition while still allowing their pets the free rein they have come to enjoy.  No longer do you have to sacrifice style for functionality.  It’s possible to have dogs and furniture that looks great too.

Dog Proofing Options
Pets can “add” to our furniture in a number of different ways.  Depending on which issues you are facing, there are steps you can take to reduce the amount of mess and over all wear and tear on your furniture that sees a lot of dog action in a day.

Among your options are:

Making use of slipcovers
There was a time when slip covers came in one material—plastic.  And they were reminiscent of your grandma.  While you love Grandma with all of your heart, you don’t necessarily love her “style” when it comes to furniture coverings.   You were hoping for something a little more fashionable for your home.

Good news!  You don’t have to resort to plastic coverings simply because you have pets.  Slipcovers come in a variety of styles, patterns, and colors.  You can buy them premade at department stores or even have them custom designed for that “like a glove” fit.

The beauty of slipcovers?  They protect your furniture but can still be removed for washing as often as necessary.  Buy several in different styles and colours, so you can mix things up!

Purchasing durable furniture with pet friendly upholstery
Maybe you feel it’s time for an update.  Every home needs one from time to time.  With today’s pet friendly upholstery options, you can choose furniture that was practically designed to withstand pet wear and tear.  Some great upholstery choices include leather, microfiber, and Crypton.

Keep on top of grooming
One of the biggest challenges dog owners face is the removal of unwanted pet hair.  While shedding is a natural process that occurs with all dogs, keeping on top of your dog’s grooming can make a dramatic difference in how much hair you see strewn throughout your house.  Regular brushing and visits to Fido’s favorite groomer will help keep him looking and smelling great, and as an added bonus, will keep hair loss to a minimum.  As with all things, consistency is key.

Consider dark coloured furniture
Dark coloured furniture and upholstery can work wonders to hide stains, pet hair, and dirty pawprints.  You don’t want to be a slave to cleaning, and dark furniture allows you to hide a little bit of the dirt for a day or two before a more thorough cleaning is necessary.

Maintain clean paws
Clean paws mean clean furniture.  When Fido is outside, keep soft cloths and warm, soapy water by your door, so you can do a little clean up job on his paws BEFORE he jumps on your fresh clean bedding or white sofa.  A little preventive maintenance can save you a lot of wear and tear on your furniture.

Establish certain rooms as off limits to pets
If you like to entertain, you might want to designate certain rooms as off limits to your dogs.  Baby gates aren’t just for babies!  They are wonderful tools to prevent Fido from doing his best to leave his mark on the rooms you would like to keep for guest use only, or if the room can be closed off with a door, simply close it to restrict access.

Use lint rollers
Let’s face it; no matter what you do, Fido is still going to shed.  It’s unavoidable.  But the good news is lint rollers aren’t just for clothes!  They work really well on sofas and even carpets to remove unsightly pet hair.  Making use of a lint roller is a great way to do a quick cleanup of your furniture without necessitating you hauling out the big canister vacuum and spending an hour cleaning.

Purchase removable cushion covers
Removable cushion covers can be real life savers for you!  They usually contain zippers for easy removal, so you can throw them in the washer for a quick wash as often as needed.  The ability to wash couch cushion covers keeps damage to a minimum and affords you the opportunity to keep your couch looking clean and neat for very little effort.

Use Bitter Apple on wood surfaces
Fido a little too fond of chomping on your oak dining room table legs? It’s a problem, for sure!  Most veterinary clinics and quality pet stores sell a product called Bitter Apple.  Its taste is very unappealing to dogs, and once most get a lick or two if it, it is enough to deter the most avid chewer. Simply spray it on areas that you want your dog to avoid and watch it work its magic!

Yes, dogs can wreak havoc on our furniture, but it is possible to dog proof it.  Life is for the living, and we don’t want to give up the things we enjoy doing with our pets just to preserve our furniture.  Fortunately, we no longer have to.  By following these few simple tips, you can enjoy your bonding time with Fido and have great-looking furniture too!

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