We love our furry friends as much as we love our homes, so it’s essential for us to find a suitable pet-friendly rug as well. Rugs are a great way to soften up wood or tiled floor, but pets can quickly inflict chaos in the home. We are often approached by pet owners, unsure of what rug to buy, and while there is no perfectly pet-proof handmade rug, some options are certainly better than others. In this post, we will discuss a few of the best rugs available, some of the features that make them great choices and talk about general rug care for homes with a resident four-footer.
Pets and Rugs: A Terrifying Combination
- Pets often collect mud, dirt and grease on their paws which they could then tread all over your beautiful rug.
- Before pets are house trained they might pee or poop on the rug, which can lead to lingering odours and nasty spots. Urine can actually be the more evil of the two, as the acidity can cause burning through the rug pile and stripping away the dyes.
- Your pet may vomit on the fabric, which can lead to discolouration and again more odours.
- They can chew at the threads, leading to an unravelled mess.
- When they shed fur it will tend to accumulate on the rug, which will affect its aesthetic appeal.
Tips to consider when buying a pet-friendly rug
This is the first thing to think about when choosing the right rug. Wool rugs are naturally stain-resistant and easy to keep clean as the natural oils in wool resist dirt and keep it from getting ground into the fibres. The most dog/cat-friendly rugs are Flatweaves (kilims) because they are resistant, made from coarse wool, easy to shake out and keep clean.
When it comes to picking your carpet colour, dark colours are most preferred. Although, you will also need to consider the colour of your pet’s fur. For instance, if you have a white fluffy dog or cat, the white fur will clearly show up on a dark-coloured rug. So there are two schools of thought here; pick a colour that is as close as possible to your pet’s hair, that way you will minimise the appearance of any dropped pet hair. Or another slant is to go with a mid to darker shade to lessen the visual appearance and disguise the effects of wear and tear.
We love patterned rugs to decorate any home, they make a big difference in the way your floor looks and they’re a popular choice for pet lovers also. Never opt for a plain or solid rug, a patterned rug with small details means it’s more likely to hide dirt and stains, making them less visible and noticeable, which is optimal in a pet household.
Pile is a word that refers to the threads making up the rug. Essentially it is the part that you walk on. It’s an important consideration when selecting your ideal pet-friendly rug. The team at Lilla Rugs suggest it is wiser to opt for lower pile rugs, that way your pet is at a lower risk of catching their claws or teeth. For example, Moroccan Berber Beni Ourain rugs have a thick pile, whereas a classic Tribal Persian rug has a lower pile and a Kilim/ Flatweave rugs have basically no pile.
Avoid long tassels and fringing
Opt for a rug without loops or long tassels, as these can possibly snag on your pet’s claws. Your pet will also be attracted to chew or play with fringing on a rug.
Rug-Cleaning and General Carpet-Care Tips
1. React Fast
Even pets that are very well house trained will occasionally have accidents or barf something up. If your cat or dog does their business on the rug, get it blotted up as quickly as possible. Don’t use any chemicals, and blot, don’t rub. A little trick: mix a little splash of washing up liquid with warm water and let the foam rise to the surface. Grab a soft cloth (not a bright coloured one) and scoop up some of the foam. With this, blot the stained area of the rug. If you act fast, the stain and odour will likely not effect your rug.
2. Stay Away From Chemical Based Rug Cleaners
Strong chemical based rug cleaners generally make the stain worse and cause further damage to the rug. Handmade rugs and carpets use a lot of vegetable dyes, so the reaction to the chemicals could worsen the stain. Avoid temptation!
3. Call Us
If you don't think step 1 has worked, or you only notice the stain after it has been there a while, get it in for repair quickly. The more it seeps in, the harder it is to mend. Urine is your big watch out, as the acidity can burn through the rug. At this point it is best to get it to a professional cleaner who can clean or repair the damage carefully, by hand.
Always remember to follow the seller’s suggestions when trying to clean a rug or remove a stain. Some rugs – particularly those with a very short pile – are easy to de-fur with a lint roller, so keep one on hand for regular use. Remember to brush your dog regularly to remove some of the shed hair, you can this outside so that it doesn’t find it's ways into the house. Purchasing a high-quality vacuum will suck up the dog hair stuck to your rug and will keep it looking its best (though remember to keep your vaccum setting on low).
Our Rug Choices
There are a number of rugs on the market that will work in your pet-populated home. Most owners will likely find a winning product among the 6 featured above. Have you discovered a rug that stands up to your pet? We’d love to hear about it!