There is a common misconception that pets and rugs don’t go together, and it’s so pervasive that people end up choosing one over the other. But your love of furry companions doesn’t need to clash with your home décor. The right rug can turn a house into a home for all the members of your family, whatever the species. To show that pets and rugs aren’t mutually exclusive, we’ve even put together a brief list of features for pet rugs. Here’s how to make pooches, kitty-cats, and even exotic sidekicks feel at home:




1. Durability is Key

For prospective owners of both pets and rugs, durability is crucial. Be proactive and replace your area rugs with something that can withstand the mischief of an overexcited tail-wagger. Also, consider buying a rug with anti-slip underlay, especially if your floors are tiled, to avoid it being torn or stretched as they’re dragged by bouncy paws. Hard-wearing, low-maintenance rugs made of seagrass, jute, hemp, and other durable natural fibres can put up with all the prancing and dancing a pooch can throw at them. 





2. Hair Camouflaging is a Must

Shedding can be an issue, especially for long-haired breeds. Also, hairballs can be quite messy, can’t they, cat owners? Most synthetic fibres trap the fur in very effectively, so synthetic rugs get covered in hair in two shakes. To avoid having hair-riddled rugs, opt for anti-static fabric. If that’s not an option, consider spraying your rug regularly with diluted fabric softener. Thistakes away the static cling; the lovely smell is an added bonus. Another option is to choose low-cut pile rugs. But if you like your rugs fluffier, try a shaggy one with thicker hairs, and make sure your vacuum cleaner is specifically designedfor pet owners. That way, you’re sure to hoover up not only hairs,but also fleas and other pests that might be hiding in hard-to-reach places





3. Earthy Colours Mean Less Work

This may come as a surprise, but many of our common pets are colour-blind. A dog’s colour spectrum is limited to shades of yellow, grey, and blue. Likewise, a cat’s world is blurry and less colourful than ours. So, the colour of your rug won’t make much of a difference to a canine or feline pet. But it will make a difference to you, especially if you’re thinking of buying a wool carpet, which tends to be more expensive than most. A pet-friendly colour is anything that will help hide not just hair, but also saliva, dirt, faeces, urine, and occasionally even digestive juices. It all depends on the species and breed, though. If you like larger, drooly doggies, for instance, it may be worth looking into darker shades, such as amber, mocha, and russet.





4. Elaborate Patterns Are a Great Distraction

If you like to surround yourself with colour, you don’t need to worry too much about having pets, as long as you choose your rugs wisely. Try elaborate and rich patterns that complement your pet’s frolicsome personality. Not only will they cheer you up, but they’ll hide those little accidents that happen when you least expect it. Opt for irregular shapes and abstract outlines, bursts of colour and unique motifs to help divert attention away from stains and hairs. You’ll thank us if you happen to own a particularly active pet, like a bouncy bunny or a lively lovebird. 





5. Stain-Free Rugs Stay Clean

‘Soggy doggy’ type rugs are ideal for colder climates. Some are called dirt trappers andothers are grime busters, but the principle is the same: they’re ultra-absorbent. Unfortunately, they’re also quite small. So, no heavy-duty mat will stop a pet from leaving a trail of paw prints across floors and rugs after a dewy morning walk. But if you want something much larger, much more useful, and a bit more luxurious, a stain-free rug may be more appropriate. They come in a variety of shades and patterns. Abstract and watercolour stain-free rugs are particularly popular because they help petowners avoid the embarrassment of muddy paw prints.





6. Odour Resistant Rugs Make It a Welcoming Home

Unfortunately for shaggy rugs, wool rugs, animal hides, and polyester, they tend to get a bit funky in time. That’s because germs settle and thrive on them. Couple that with the wed dog smell after a stroll through the rain, and before you know it, your house smells of pets. So, if you don’t want your social life to change for the worse, your choice of rug should consider odour neutralization. Something that’s easy on the nose, as well as the eye, is a bamboo rug; bamboo viscose has been proven to have anti-microbial properties – or rather it doesn’t facilitate the spread of germs aswool or polyester do. 





7. Bite and Scratch-Proof Rugs Save You Money

Sooner or later, dogs will start to sink their teeth into your rugs, and cats will sharpen their claws or get tangled up in rug fibres. One way to prevent your floor covering from becoming a chew toy is to choose a rug with a bit of weight to it. If your pet finds it hard to flip the rug over or pull it along, then it’s less likely to be able to chew on it or scratch it. In terms of materials, loads of synthetic fibres are canine and feline compatible, but there are natural options out there, too. Besides jute and hemp, animalhide is a great contender, especially since premium quality leather is naturally fire-resistant and virtually impenetrable. Also, unlike rawhide twists, knots, and chew bones, a soft hide rug has very little appeal to a pet. If possible, don’t buy a skin rug if your pet isn’t potty trained yet, because your cleaning options will be very limited.




8. Indoor & Outdoor Ready Rugs 

Taking your local climate into account before you splash out on a luxury rug is a pragmatic approach. It pays to have versatile rugs you can take out to the back garden in the summer, to keep your children and pets comfy and warm while you do the gardening or set up the barbeque. That way, you can keep an eye on the whole family. It’s also a budget-friendly solution to a problem many townhouses in the UK are struggling with: lack of space for entertaining.





That concludes our list of features every pet owner should look for in a rug. Before we scuttle away, pets and all, we’d like to share with you 8simple tips to keep your rugs looking their best for many years to come. Even with prancing paws running amok in your home, you can still keep your floors tidy and fresh if you remember these handy tips:


  • Get a vacuum cleaner specifically designed for pets. These tend to be a bit more expensive than regular cleaners,because they can hoover up very fine hair and dander stuck in the rug pile thanks to special brushes that stir them up and trap them. 


  • Spray your rugs with a solution of fabric softener every few days to avoid static cling. Pet hairs can be very fine, and dander is barely noticeable to the human eye. But both are highly allergenic. To stop your rugs from drawing hair and dander due to static build-up, use fabric softener – a proven static reducer. 


  • Use dampened rubber gloves on the rug to clear away the hair. The friction between your rubber gloves and your rugs and upholstery, causes the hair to stick to the gloves. To get rid of the hairs, simply submerge the gloves into waterfor a few seconds. 


  • When there’s a build-up of hair, rub the carpet with an inflated balloon, if you have one. Just like before, the static electricity helps pick up the hairs. 


  • Use lint and pet hair rollers. Classic hair rollers won’t help much if you have a large pet, and refills can be expensive. But nowadays you can find washable hair rollers, as well as a variety of powered brushes for both rugs and upholstery. 


  • Pet odour neutralizingsprays and foams are great on-the-go solutions. They tend to be alcohol solutions, and skin contact is avoidable. Homemade alternatives include baking soda and lemon juice, but these are short-term solutions and only suitable for small areas. 


  • Vinegar can neutralizethe odours. When you don’t have a urine and odour remover at home, you can make one yourself. A simple water and vinegar mixture can neutralizethe ammonia in urine. 


  • A wet vac can clean more thoroughly than regular vacuum cleaners. They tend to over-wet your rugs and carpets, so it’s essential to allow your floor coverings to dry thoroughly after cleaning. 


Hopefully, we’ve given you a few helpful tips to make buying that perfectly sumptuous rug a seamless experience for the entire family, pets included. Rest assured, when you’re ready to commit to a luxury rug, you’ll find a plethora of pet-friendly floor coverings at Online Tapijten, where boutique rugs meet contemporary lifestyles. 




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