Canine design

I’ve been offering my clients pet savvy interior design for about ten years now. The most common complaint I receive, with regards to four-legged children, is that copious amounts of fur are shed on furniture, carpets, and comforters. This is perhaps akin to living with a teenager who has a severe aversion to picking up his dirty clothes–it’s completely natural! And with a bit of dedication, can be completely eradicated.

There are simple techniques to eliminate the issue of fur on furniture, even if you don’t have the budget for an interior designer. The sad thing is that so many pets in shelters are there and facing their demise simply because they shed. How tragic that something so natural and so easily manageable can cause one to abandon their best friend. So check out the following tips and tricks for bringing more harmony and style to your animal house.

Color choices

Multi-colored fabrics with a pattern are always going to conceal multi-colored pet hair the best. Try to find a pattern where the primary colors are similar to your pets’ primary colors. For mutli-colored pets, you’ll want to source out material that has a small pattern of the combination of their colors interspersed throughout. And for solid color pets? Well, that’s a no brainer.

Fabric choices for furniture, throws, duvets, linens and comforters

Regardless of concealing color patterns, your pet will still shed. But you don’t have to contemplate adorning everything in 50’s plastic (although in some genres that’s actually cool again!) or buying new linens to match your fur child. All of the above, including sofa and chair covers, come in all sizes, materials, and patterns these days. Fabrics to avoid–they actually pull out and hold on to your pets’ fur–are micro-suede (the worst!) denim, flannel, corduroy, velvet, and wool-type fabrics. Fur is very attracted to this material and very difficult to remove, even with a sticky roller. The color rule applies to rugs as well.

Choose fabrics that are slicker to the touch, such as faux leather and blended polyester, acrylic, and silk fabrics. These fabrics make fur practically slide right off.

Prevention is the key

Weekly brushing with the right tools (one of them being patience) can make your life, your pet, and most areas of your home–fur free.

One important note; never dry clean rugs or furniture, as the chemicals used in the process can be hazardous to your pets and young children.

Colleen Paige is an animal behaviorist, the Editor-in-Chief of “Pet Home” Magazine and the author of “The Good Behavior Book for Dogs.” She offers advice to clients and readers alike, ranging from dog and cat training and pet friendly interiors and garden design to pet nutrition and pet safe pools and homes.