Pet-friendly materials for your home

Much as we love our pets, the shedding of hair and the mess they bring in can play havoc with your floors and furniture, not to mention adding to your household chore workload.

Pet-friendly materials for the home

Pic: Getty

If you've had enough of your fido or feline messing up your home, it could be time to change your plush carpets and lush sofa for an altogether more easy-clean solution.

Hard flooring
When it comes to flooring, carpets and muddy dogs simply don't mix. However, there are a variety of hard flooring solutions to suit every budget and style.

Coming in at the cheaper end of the scale, a vinyl or lino floor covering in the kitchen or utility room will keep the mess to a minimum and the cleaning easy. But if you're after a more stylish accompaniment, consider natural slate or stone tiles. Not only are they beautiful and easy to sweep up, the textured finish means your pooch won't slip and slide across the kitchen. Marble and ceramic are other options, but these can often prove too slippery for an excitable hound, and have a tendency to stain should your pup be prone to the odd accident.

Elsewhere in the house, wood flooring provides a warmer finish, both for your feet and for Fido. Hardwood floors may be pricey, but they are less slippery for dogs than their cheaper laminate counterparts, and even if they get scratched, a sander is guaranteed to restore them to their natural beauty.

Laminate is, of course, the sensible option when it comes to your wallet, and there is plenty of choice available, some textured and some not. For a pet-friendly option, Imprezzo Luxury Vinyl Flooring is the ideal, providing a slightly textured surface, allowing your pet better grip, and an easy-clean solution for you. You'll also be able to replace individual panels in the unlikely event of damage, and the firm offers a 25-year guarantee.

If the clickety-clack of the dog's claws on the hard flooring is more than you can bear, carpeting is the alternative. However, it's best to save your sumptuous carpets for those rooms where the family pet is forbidden, otherwise you'll find yourself vacuuming every five minutes, and that wet dog smell can be tough to get rid of.

There is an alternative though - carpet tiles. Relatively cheap, and of course, easy to replace after a spill or puppy mishap, carpet tiles are no longer just for offices. These days DIY stores stock a variety of styles and colours, and it could make all the difference if you have an accident-prone pup or a carpet-chewing pooch.

For those of us that can't resist those puppy dog eyes pleading for a spot on the sofa, or the contented purr of their feline friend, pet-friendly soft furnishings could be the answer to your prayers.

A good quality leather sofa is undoubtedly easy to clean, and is perfect for pets that shed heavily, but be aware that claws can make their mark on the softer leathers. For a warmer option that's almost as easy to clean up, opt for an easy-clean microfiber material.

Alternatively, you can encourage your hound to take his place on the floor whilst also protecting your carpet, if you opt for a warm rug. To take the hassle out of cleaning it, though, try a cow hide or other natural material, that will help to repel the hair and mud that might make its way into the room.

And if you just can't face the doggy odour or feline fur on your fabulous furniture, why not get treat them to a purpose-made blanket of their own? There are many warm and cosy options available at pet stores that your pet will love to snuggle up on, and all that's required to clean them is a flick of the washing machine switch.

Have you found the perfect pet-friendly material for your home? Leave your comments below...