How To: Decorate with Your Pet in Mind

As a pet owner, I refuse to comprise the look of my home. Paw-printed this-and-thats with heinous colors—forget it. No, the answer isn’t to inhumanely crate your dog or shun them to the yard. Pet-friendly decorating is all you need, and this is a growing trend among home and pet owners.

VACUUM REGULARLY. Animal hair has a distinct smell and oil that will attract dirt to it. A pet specialized vacuum is necessary and is worth the investment. A light sprinkling of baking soda will help absorb that pet oil loosening up pet hair. Avoid carpet. It’s impossible to keep clean and inhabits dander, hair and dirt. If you’re doing hardwood, opt for a low-gloss finish to disguise scratches.

FABRICS. Avoid velvets and other fabrics for a sofa. A washable or wipeable material will work to your advantage. Don’t forget to Scotchguard. If you love the look of delicate fabrics, use them on your pillows. Printed fabrics also help camouflage hair and dirt.

FINISHES. Design around your pet’s color to disguise stray hairs into the décor.

BLANKET. If your pet likes to snuggle on your bed or your sofa, a soft throw will attract him or her to one spot. Hair is contained and the throw can be put away when company arrives.

PET FURNITURE. To minimize your pet’s bed from becoming an eyesore, chose one with a color that matches your décor. Or invest in having it re-upholstered. Kari Whitman, an LA-based interior designer suggests using an old arm chair as a stylish alternative. “Cut the legs down to an inch off the ground and make that a chair for your dog.”

LITTER BOXES. What a love/hate relationship! Invest in self-cleaning ones or those that aren’t shaped traditionally. Covering the sides of the litter box will also help it blend into a room’s décor.

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