Home Decorating Solutions for Animal Lovers

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by Colleen Paige

I’ve been offering my clients pet savvy interior design for about ten years. The most common complaint repeatedly expressed to me is about the disdain they have for the copious amount of fur that is shed on furniture, like sofas and comforters, by their four-legged children. 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 is not the perpetrator’s fault. However, with a bit of dedication, it can be completely eradicated. For the human solution, taking away the car keys will solve the issue in a heartbeat! For the four-legged solution, the following tips and tricks will bring more harmony and style to your animal house.

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 the shelter are there and facing their demise because they shed. How tragic that something so natural and so easily manageable can cause one to abandon their best friend.

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 pet’s primary colors. For multi-colored pets, you’ll want to source out material that has a small pattern of the combination of their colors interspersed throughout. 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 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 that can actually pull out and hold on to your pet’s fur is micro-suede, 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 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, author and pet savvy interior designer in Los Angeles, California. She is also the founder of National Dog Day and the creator of Canine Design, a new TV series aimed to educate pet owners on how to live more harmoniously with their furry kids.
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