If you’re like us here at Elizabeth Lamont, you love animals just as much as you love interior design. Unfortunately, the reality is that sharing your home with furry friends often means more wear and tear (and dirt, and fur, and smells) on your furniture than you would like.
There’s nothing better than sinking into a cozy chair or couch with a cup of coffee and a dog or purring cat in your lap, so here are our top six tips for keeping your furniture clean and pet-friendly.
Many people have adopted pets recently, rationalizing that they will be home every day and will have time to teach, play with, and love their new pets. It’s wonderful and truly heartening to see, but at the same time it is important to keep in mind the responsibilities you have as a pet owner. We love our pets and want them to be close to us, but there are just some places that need to be off-limits.
Our first tip is finding a pet trainer, especially if you have a young dog or cat, that is a good fit for you and your pet. It is an important first step in encouraging good behavior, like not sitting on top of all your sofa cushions or wiping noses on your upholstered chairs. Pet training, while an investment, is also important as a pet owner, as trainers teach you how to be more responsible and firm with your pets (i.e. making sure your dogs are penned in a certain area or outside when you are away, giving them enough exercise that they won’t chew the furniture when bored, etc.) leading to better pet behaviors and a cleaner home.
Our second tip is the generous use of microfiber blankets! Washable microfiber blankets that match your décor are a stylish lifesaver that lets your pets lounge on the furniture while taking away the stress of needing to deep-clean your sofa every three months. I have soft blankets on all my couches, matched exactly with the couch color or in a fun accent color, and throw them in the wash every week. Voilà! The dogs and cat love them, and it’s incredibly easy to maintain. We have washable microfiber blankets available at both our Malibu and Palisades locations, in both small, medium, and large sizes. I would suggest the baby blanket size for small dogs and cats.
Our third tip, similar to the one above, is custom furniture protectors. If you aren’t a fan of having blankets draped over your sofas and chairs, furniture protectors are the answer! I had a client recently whose dog was a love, but liked to drool all over her expensive sofa arm. We made her custom washable microfiber arm and seat protectors to match her sofa. Happy pooch and happy client!
Our fourth, recently-discovered tip is grooming wipes. Grooming wipes are specially-made wipes for pets, allowing you to safely and easily wipe away dirt, dandruff, and odor between baths. I make sure to have wipes at every door and wipe my dogs’ feet before they come in the house, especially after they’ve just had a walk. It’s truly a game changer! Grooming wipes come is many different scents and brands (they even have hypoallergenic varieties), but I personally like to use the vanilla and almond scented ones from earthbath.
Our fifth tip is to embrace technology! The only fabric to be certified disinfectable by the EPA, Crypton Fabric Intelligence creates stain and odor resistant indoor fabrics, ready for spills, pets, or whatever comes their way. This new eco-friendly fabric is extremely durable and comes in a wide variety of textures and colors, making it the go-to choice for those with little family members of all kinds.
Our sixth and final tip is to protect your bedding. Our pets love to roll and relax on their humans’ beds, leading to bedspreads full of fur (and occasionally holes). Matelassé coverlets or blanket covers are the answer. Matelassé is a single-ply fabric typically woven with a pattern, it is both is thicker than a sheet grade fabric and quite durable. Matelassé coverlets offer a more tailored look to the top of the bed, while helping to protect your bedding from furry family members. We offer washable, cotton Matelassé coverlets and blankets at both our Malibu and Palisades locations. As a more summery alternative, tightly-woven linen fabric coverlets or blanket covers are also a great choice, as the tight weave makes the fabric more durable and less prone to damage from small claws.
I hope these tips help in keeping your home clean and animal friends happy.