How to Protect Your Furniture From Pets
Pets are part of the family. They love us unconditionally, provide us with emotional support and help us reduce stress — even when they see a new wood table or leather couch like a new chew toy or scratch post. Whether you’ve had a pet for a while or you’re just starting your pet parent journey, sharing furniture is, and always will be, part of our everyday lives.
Though they don’t mean to damage your belongings, your furry friends can cause furniture wear and tear. Fortunately, you can avoid this situation with pet furniture covers or by buying furniture for cats and dogs. To make life even simpler, we’ve put together helpful ways for dog-proofing and cat-proofing your furniture while reducing cleaning and keeping those couch cuddles we all love!
Check out how to protect your couch and other furniture from pets.
Why You Should Protect Your Furniture From Pets
Pieces of good-quality furniture made from hardwood or leather are an investment. As a result, you have to put in the time and effort to maintain and protect those items from wear and tear, especially if you have pets at home. With the right care, you can ensure your furniture lasts for years to come.
If you don’t protect your furniture, your belongings can experience the following:
- Shortened furniture lifespans
- High costs associated with constant repairs and restoration
- Reduced quality and worth of the furniture
- Impacted comfortability
- More foul odors
- Longer cleaning routines
- Unattractive appearances
Of course, life happens. Over time, your furniture will become worn down with everyday use, so it shouldn’t be alarming to see a few stains and rips as you and your family use your furniture. Unfortunately, pets can speed up that process.
Some ways our furry friends can cause damage include:
- Scratching surfaces: When protecting hardwood furniture from pets, scratches are common, especially when you’ve just welcomed a new puppy or kitten into the family. Training takes a while, which could be costly to repair regularly.
- Chewing on hardwood tables: This behavior is normal amongst dogs of all ages. Chewing on items helps dogs relieve stress and keep their jaws strengthened, amongst other benefits. Bite marks on our sofas can cause faster wear and tear, such as holes getting bigger in a short period. Once a dog starts chewing, they always go back for more.
- Accidental furniture stains: Certain accidents can leave stains on your couches and chairs. Puppies and kittens can be messy while they’re learning the ropes, so it’s essential to prepare your furniture for a new pet.
- Muddy paw marks: If you have a big garden and your dog loves the outdoors, you likely know about dirty paw marks. Dirt, mud or debris in carpets or on fabric couches can be time-consuming to clean, and if left untouched, can cause some unflattering stains. Dog-proofing your home is one of the best ways to remove pet stains in furniture and will help reduce cleaning time, keeping your furniture safe from your pet.
- Shedding hair: Unless you have a hairless dog or cat breed, cleaning up hair is likely part of your daily routine. As dogs and cats make way for healthy new hair to grow, the dead hair starts falling out — and a lot of that hair starts sticking to our furniture and even our clothes. Some breeds shed year-round and some only once a year, but you can’t prevent shedding either way.
- Licking furniture: While licking is a natural habit for both dogs and cats, they leave bacteria on our furniture, which can cause stains and odors. It’s best to get excessive licking checked out by the vet, but otherwise, licking can often mean your pets have anxiety or they’re suffering from boredom. Try to increase their activity with more exercise or other stimulation.
Pets can have these habits for many reasons, so it’s essential to analyze your dog or cat’s behavior. These reasons can include:
- A lack of exercise
- A lack of mental stimulation
Simple solutions such as increased activity, regular training and chew toys, combined with using preventative measures to protect your furniture from pets, can help minimize damage and ensure a longer furniture lifespan. It’s also smart to choose particularly durable furniture for rooms where your pets will be the most. For example, if you want to purchase a dog bed, one with quality materials will take damage better.
Ways to Protect Furniture From Your Cat or Dog
Eliminate excessive cleaning routines and start enjoying your home with these helpful tips on how to protect sofas and wood furniture from pets.
- Use pet covers to dog-proof and cat-proof your sofa: One of the easiest and lowest-cost ways is using a pet cover to help prevent hair, drool, bacteria and dirt from sinking into your new couch. Your dog or cat probably has a favorite spot, so make sure it’s covered with a cover that’s easy to maintain. Some options include blankets, throws or sofa covers.
- Invest in your pet’s furniture: Create a comfortable space for your pet to sleep in with a new dog bed or cat bed. You can also buy furniture that incorporates both a coffee table and bed so your pet can stay close to you. Pets take time to get used to new products, so you might need to do some extra training to help them feel comfortable. But in the end, your time will be well-spent.
- Create a daily grooming routine: While some breeds shed less than others, a great way to prevent copious amounts of hair from sticking to furnishings is daily grooming. Pet hair can be easier to handle depending on the furniture you have, like hardwood floors or leather couches, but grooming can limit the amount of hair you need to clean. Grooming your pet also helps remove dead hair, promotes new hair growth and leaves your pets’ coats looking shiny and new.
- Prioritize pet nail care: Another easy grooming method is keeping their nails cut. When your cat jumps on your new hardwood table or your dog jumps up on the front door, scratches are inevitable if they have long nails. Keeping their nails nice and short also prevents nails from getting stuck to small threads and furthering any existing damage.
- Use furniture sprays that prevent chewing: You can buy multiple sprays that deter dogs and cats from chewing — but three common, natural ingredients you can use at home include vinegar, citrus and peppers. It’s always a good idea to make sure you’re following cleaning guidelines based on the type of furniture you have before using any products. Also, be sure anything you use doesn’t cause an allergic reaction in your pet.
- Ensure your pets have toys to play with: Keeping toys nearby is a simple way of distracting cats and dogs from chewing or clawing new home decor. All pets have their favorite kinds of toys, whether it’s ropes, tennis balls or plushies. Playing with your pets can help them release stress and keep their minds stimulated, so they’ll leave your furniture alone.
- Make sure your pets get enough exercise: Just like humans, one thing all pets need is good exercise. Playing with your cats, walking your dogs or taking them to the park will release energy and pent-up tension, keep them in shape and help them keep calm when they’re at home. If pets don’t exercise, they’ll release their energy onto your furniture in the form of scratching and biting.
You can also set boundaries and section off areas in your home by creating specific entrances to the outdoors, limiting grass and mud from dirtying up your floors. Many pet parents like to share their homes with their pets, meaning no furniture is off-limits. In that case, it’s smart to use a few specific techniques to have the best of both worlds, where you protect your furniture from your pet and still let them lounge around.
How to Protect Your Furniture From Dogs
There’s nothing better than cuddling up with your dog on the couch, but along with cuddling comes hair, drool, dirt, unpleasant smells, scratches and chew marks. Your new shaker-style dining table can become your pup’s new best friend — but have no fear, we have some helpful ways to dog-proof your furniture.
- Provide your dog with a comfortable bed: Dog beds can be made out of various fabrics to make them comfortable, like faux suede, flannel or fleece. Your dog will never leave this cozy spot with a bed made just for them. Dog beds also come in many stylish designs to suit your furniture taste, and some even feature a dog retreat.
- Brush and wash your dog: Just like brushing your dog, washing them with dog-friendly, anti-bacterial shampoo is equally important. Routine washing helps keep the odors away and provides your dog with healthy-looking fur. Not only does brushing and washing remove dead hair and skin, but it also keeps debris off furniture.
- Set up a mudroom or mudroom area: It’s smart to dedicate your mudroom as an area for your dog, especially if you love the outdoors and your dog loves a good swim session. Depending on your lifestyle, mudroom areas can be simply or extravagantly designed and can include doggy showers or built-in cupboards. They can also just be a space to keep towels to dry your dog’s paws.
- Install doggy gates or doors: These additions are easy to clean and install. Doggy gates can be helpful to section off certain areas of your home and block furniture pieces, especially if you’ve just purchased a new solid wood dining table or leather couch you don’t want chewed on. Doggy doors are handy to limit dirty paws from appearing everywhere in your house and help keep a simple cleaning routine.
- Routine training: Training your dog can be challenging, but once you’ve put a training routine in place, it can be beneficial. Training your dog to stay in certain areas and helping them differentiate between toys and household items can help prevent chewing.
- Use dog-friendly repellent sprays: Protecting solid wood furniture from your dog can be done by spraying a repellent directly onto an exposed wood table and the chair legs. Make sure the spray is non-toxic and safe for dogs. You can make a dog repellent at home and use it whenever your dog gets the urge to chew. Once your dog tastes the citrus or peppery concoction, their chewing should subside.
- Provide your dog with chewable toys: Often, dogs can become bored and resort to chewing. If they don’t have toys, they’ll find the next best thing. Ensuring your dog has toys to chew on will help them keep their paws and mouths at bay. Dental chews and tug-o-war ropes are just two options you can consider.
Whatever your preference, it’s possible to ensure your sofas and wood furniture pieces are protected while giving your dogs the freedom to roam around the house and spend time with you in your home.
How to Protect Your Furniture From Cats
Cats have incredibly sharp claws, and they love scratching, which isn’t a good combination if you own good-quality furniture. The difference between cats and dogs is that cats can reach more surfaces and have many more opportunities for scratching, poking and ripping.
Cats can do a number on your tables, chairs, cabinets, bookcases and even walls, but luckily we have some helpful tips you can follow to cat-proof your furniture.
- Buy your cat scratching posts or pads: Place these objects near furniture pieces you want your cats to avoid. It’ll help redirect them to use the posts or pads. You can even build your own upright or horizontal posts. You can try to train your cats by giving them catnip or simply placing them on their post or pad. These tricks reinforce good behavior and divert them away from the furniture.
- Ensure your cat’s claws are properly trimmed: Nail trimming is a fast and effective way of cat-proofing furniture, but it also protects you, the family and your cat’s health. Trimming their nails once or twice every month will reduce scratching on furniture. While cats’ demeanors vary, trimming your cat’s nails might be challenging, so getting them cut by a professional might be your best option.
- Use cat-friendly repellent sprays: Like dogs, repellent sprays can also be very effective on cats. Ingredients such as apple cider vinegar and citrus-based essential oils are unappealing for cats. All you need to do is mix it with water and spray it on surfaces. It’s always best to make sure you’re able to use certain products, as maintaining and cleaning solid wood furniture differs from how to protect leather furniture from pets.
- Place litter boxes strategically: A litter box can be messy and smelly. Accidents happen — and when you take a closer look, you could have messy paw prints all over your new table. Placing your cat’s litter boxes away from valuable items can de-risk mess and ensure furniture stays fresh and clean.
- Place a pet cover for cats on your couches: To minimize cat hair, scratches and holes, you may want to invest in pet covers. You can get a waterproof couch cover, a throw blanket or even a towel. Blankets made from polyester, microfiber, fleece or silk materials are easy to clean and naturally repel cat hair.
- Use double-sided tape: Cats don’t enjoy sticky paws, so a good trick to try is placing double-sided tape on the sides of your furniture. This trick will assist in preventing cat-to-couch contact, but always make sure the tape won’t damage the furniture’s material.
- Train your cat: Some tricks you can try at home for training include using solid scratch posts with a lot of material for scratching, interactive cat toys, catnip and comfortable cat beds in window sills or areas they like to sleep.
How to Prepare Your Furniture for a New Puppy or Kitten
Kittens and puppies may be tiny, but they’re the ones that can cause a lot of trouble, especially if they’re home-bound and have the freedom of moving around in your home. You’ll need to take some steps to make sure they learn the ropes. Here’s how you can protect your solid wood or leather furniture from your new pets.
To prepare your furniture for new puppies, try these ideas:
- Begin crate training: This technique provides new puppies with a safe and comfortable space made just for them. You can leave your pup in the crate for short periods of time to get them used to the area.
- Create a training schedule: Training is essential for new puppies. By teaching them to communicate and understand your commands or reward words, you’ll make it easier for them to know when it’s time to get off your couch. Being as consistent as possible with training is a huge help.
- Provide them with toys and chew toys: New puppies might not know what they like to chew yet, so get a few chewable toys and place them next to your furniture to see what they prefer. You’ll thank yourself when the teething phase approaches.
- Remove decorations around or on your furniture: If it’s easily accessible, puppies can easily knock over items like tablecloths and plants, causing a lot of mess and possible damage to your furniture.
- Hide breakable objects on low-standing tables, fireplaces or other surfaces: Doing this trick will prevent any damage from happening to your furniture.
To prepare your furniture for new kittens, consider using these tricks:
- Prepare a kitten room: Let your kitten become familiar with their new environment before introducing them to the rest of your home. You can place kittens in a room for a few days to a week with enough food, water and toys to keep them occupied while they’re acclimating.
- Provide them with stimulating toys to play with: Once your kitten starts exploring your home, ensure they have an entertaining play area that will divert them away from your couches. Items like scratch posts, feathers and balls on a string can work wonders.
- Remove and hide objects they can break: Like puppies, kittens are very inquisitive —but kittens can reach most furniture pieces and squeeze through things half their size! Make sure you’ve hidden objects around your tables and couches to prevent damage.
- Place the litter box in a secure area: Teach your new kitten at an early age where their litter boxes are, and place them away from any fabric couches to avoid smells. If you get more than one cat, chances are they won’t want to share their litter boxes, so it’s best to get one litter box per cat.
Repetition is key with new puppies and kittens. Once they get into your routine, learn how to communicate with you and understand your commands, it’ll be easy to get them to stop chewing, clawing or messing around on your furniture.
Shop Wooden Pet Furniture From AmishOutletStore.com Today!
Creating comfortable spaces for your pets is an excellent way to keep them from causing wear and tear, especially if they’re new to the family — but investing in good-quality furniture can help you avoid headaches even more. At AmishOutletStore.com, we have a wide range of high-quality wooden pet furniture made by Amish artisans, which are multi-functional and last years.
If you’re looking for durable and sturdy wooden pet furniture, our range includes pet gates, pet coffee tables, rustic barrel dog beds and more. We even sell dog steps, bowls and doggy ramps, so you can outfit your house with quality-made, long-lasting pet pieces. Check out our selection today!