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The Ultimate Guide to Finding a Chic, Pet-Friendly Rug

Our furry friends and stylish things can live together in harmony.

sheepdog and long haired tabby on rug
John P KellyGetty Images

Finding a rug to suit your lifestyle can be an especially exhausting process when pets are involved. While you want your home to be aesthetically pleasing, you have to be mindful of fur-covered family members. Since rugs and carpets cover a large part of the floor and can be a major style moment, when living with pets they should also be able withstand the occasional accident, sandy paw traffic, and cat napping. When searching for one that's pet-compatible, a performance-first approach is the way to go but that doesn’t mean you have to forgo style for function. There are materials, colors, and constructions that are more conducive to Whiskers’s happiness. Here is what to look for in a rug when considering your four-legged friends.

Best Pet-Friendly Rug Materials

爱博体育下载When shopping for the right rug, it’s important to think about materials. Some synthetic materials have advantages when it comes to durability and they easier to clean while some natural materials can even be machine-washed. Here are the top-performing materials to look for in a pet-friendly rug.

Jute

A natural fiber that’s extremely durable, it can withstand the wear and tear of high-traffic areas. It can be vacuumed and spot treated and in a natural brown color, dirt is camouflaged so you don’t have to constantly clean it.

Wool

It’s a more luxurious option than synthetic pet-friendly carpets. Although it’s not stain resistant or hydrophobic, it’s a durable and eco-friendlier option because of its natural fibers.

Cotton

These rugs are lightweight making them easy to move and they're machine washable in smaller sizes. If you have a large one, an enzymatic spot cleaner can remove unwanted stains.

Polypropylene

爱博体育下载This synthetic fiber is stain resistant, highly durable, and repels water. It can be spot-cleaned with detergent and water. Also known as Olefin, it’s used to make indoor/outdoor rugs.

cute little kitten
Annie OtzenGetty Images

Match your rug to your pet

You might be tempted to get a dark rug to mask stains, but color isn't a cure-all. If your pet is a shedder, choose a rug that’s closest in color to its fur to mask fallen strands. If you have a puppy that is prone to accidents, a multi-colored rug is best for disguising small stains. And tight, repeating patterns are also good for making stains less noticeable.

Things to Try and Avoid

Use

  • Two smaller rugs in a space to create the look of a larger one. This makes them easier to move when you need to clean them.
    • "Low pile" rugs have short, dense fibers that are easy to clean and don’t trap dirt and fur. It will also maintain its appearance in high-traffic areas.
      • "Cut pile" rugs are constructed from sheered strands and will allow your pet to walk or stretch without getting their claws caught.

        Avoid

        • Hooked and looped rugs are prone to pulls and snags. It’s best to steer clear of this construction if your pet has sharp claws or likes to scratch.
          • Silk- and viscose-blend rugs are soft and luxurious but the fibers delicate, easily stain, and need to be professionally cleaned.
            • "High pile" rugs look fluffy and feel plush underfoot but the long fibers catch dirt and fur and require frequent cleaning.

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