You might be the homeowner of your abode, but there’s one king or queen of the castle: your pet. When you live with pets, it’s easy to forget about style in the name of making your home comfortable and safe for your furry friends.
But, it doesn’t have to be this way! Style and comfort aren’t mutually exclusive. You can have a home that’s fashionable and safe for your pet. More and more homeowners are going above and beyond for their beloved dogs and cats. Some folks may be designing special pet-designated areas in their homes, while others are elevating their interior design style with specially crafted, on-trend furnishings, toys, and other pet accessories.
Here’s how to bring pet-friendly décor and design into your new home to make it the tasteful and chic abode you’ve always imagined.
1. Craft a Stylish Pet Corner
Don’t we all love a special escape place? Pets are similar to humans in that they like a special retreat. Your pet deserves a space to call their own, and you deserve a living room that actually looks nice. Fortunately, you don’t have to build a pet suite in your new home to give your four legged family member a cozy pet corner. However, you can ensure your pets can unwind and relax in spaces that feel uniquely theirs.
A dog bed doesn’t have to stick out like a sore thumb, either. Choose a color or design that matches your overall décor. If your décor skews to traditional styles, Orvis’ and Casper’s luxury dog beds will blend in perfectly. More minimalist homeowners can explore IKEA’s pet line. You could even stash their bed under a table to keep it out of sight.
For a stylish cat corner, consider hanging climbing shelves along the wall. Sleek, wall mounted shelves give your curious critter a fun place to explore, without consuming floor space. Safely secure these shelves in a decorative way that your cat enjoys.
2. Mix-in Elevated Pet Accessories
Fuzzy, warm, and soft textures are so relaxing. And just like us, our furry friends gravitate to comforting, plush, and soothing fabrics and textiles. Cushy velvet pillows and thick blankets are soft to the touch and boost any living space for key relaxation. But the patterns and bold colors are key and add a playful element in any room.
Nor do collars and leashes, or bowls and cups need to be bland and boring. Instead of ho-hum accessories, opt for vibrant and eye-catching design that transforms a pet space from average to extraordinary. Found My Animal’s cheeky, bold, and bright collars and leads are small art pieces in their own right.
Dog owners with a sense of humor love something clever and witty, like Barkbox’s humorous conversation starter plush toys. For pithy cat toys, browse KitNipBox for their amusing selections.
Don’t forget that cups and bowls for your furry friends can match kitchen and dining designs and color schemes, too!
3. Invest in Picture Perfect Pet Gates
As much as we love our pets, they can’t always have free range of the house. Whether you want to limit where your animal can roam while you’re gone, or you have no trespassing rules in the bedroom/formal spaces/upstairs, pet gates safely keep your furry friends where they belong.
You aren’t limited to a selection of ugly plastic pet gates from the 60s era. Sleek, arched metal gates and mid-century California-style gates can work with your décor, not against it.
4. Stick with Cat and Dog Proof Furniture
When shopping for pet friendly furniture, think big and durable. Tall tables can keep your valuables safe from wagging tails and playful paws. Look for sturdy pieces that can withstand the occasional bump or scratch from an overexcited pup or a cat’s gymnastic routine.
Unless you like to clean every day, think about getting furniture with legs that are easy to clean underneath. Skirted armchairs and sofas make sweeping and vacuuming a major drag, and are basically magnets for dirt and hair.
5. Choose High-Performance Fabrics
If you allow your animals free domain to sit on upholstered furniture, you need to invest in fabric that can sustain the strain and the stain. (Or you can spend your days trying to remove pet spots from your white sofa.) Selecting the right fabric protects your furniture and limits your cleaning.
The first step for pet friendly fabric is to choose the right material for upholstery. Stain-resistant fabrics like synthetic fibers, ultra-suede, and leather make clean-up a breeze.
When picking colors you have several options. Camouflage shedding by opting for colors that are similar to your pet. Unless your pet has white fur, choosing dark or patterned furniture hides stains and fur really well. This dog owner can attest that tan dog fur isn’t visible on a grey sofa.
If you have your heart set on a white velvet sofa, you might want to consider keeping Fido or Fluffy off the couch.
6. Install Tough Flooring
Carpet is a major no-no if you want to design a stylish, pet friendly home. Even if you have a housetrained pet, carpet absorbs odors and traps shed fur, leaving your new home with an untidy look and unpleasant smell.
Stylish, and on trend, flooring options like hardwood, ceramic tile, stained concrete, or stone look fabulous and actually stay clean. If you and your furry friends live in a warm climate, these materials can help keep them cool during the summer.
Still stuck on rugs? Install tough as nails flooring and add stately area rugs for charm.
7. Splurge on Pet-Friendly Candles and Plant Life
Adding greenery and mood-boosting scents to your abode is a must-do for many homeowners. Even if you keep it classic and simple with a few leafy plants and a subtly scented candle, it’s essential to confirm your material selection is safe for furry friends. Some plants and essential oils can be toxic for dogs and cats if ingested, so be on the lookout for ingredients that are non-toxic.
Don’t get discouraged, there are still loads of greenery and safe scents to add to your home. Opt for pet-friendly candles that will elevate the atmosphere of your space without harsh chemicals. And, plants and vivid greens can still be major players in your space, too! African violets, banana plants, spider plants, areca palms, Boston ferns, peperomia, and calatheas are safe for your four-legged companions. Don’t let owning a pet limit you from the stylish person you are. Do you have any other pet-friendly décor ideas? Please leave a comment below.
Stephanie Valente is a Content Director and Editor in Brooklyn, NY. She’s previously held writing and social media positions at Barkbox, Men’s Journal, and currently works at a full-service advertising agency. She’s a self-confessed home and design enthusiast. Stephanie is an award-winning poet and fiction writer. When she’s offline, you can find her taking a yoga class, running, hanging out with her rescue dog Pepper. Find her on stephanievalente.com.