Having one pet makes it difficult enough to keep the home clean. Throw in a bunch of dogs, and you’re in for a lot of serious cleanup time. Whether you have a large home or a small, single-story house, getting a carpet with pets in the mix is a challenge. You don’t want to get something too sensitive that will have you running back and forth to your green-certified carpet cleaning business of choice, and you don’t want to get something that you’re not thrilled about simply because you know it’s going to quickly get roughed up by your pets. However, if you’re a savvy homeowner, you can find a way to purchase a carpet that will be great for your pets and perfect for your home. With all the pet-friendly and pet-proof options out there, it’s no longer a challenge to find a carpet that lets your pets and furniture coexist peacefully. If you’re stumped on how to find the perfect carpet for a house full of pets, don’t worry. Here are a few tips to help steer you in the right direction.
Get a Stain-Proof Rug
In the past, we had to rely on frequent cleanings to keep our rugs spotless and odor-free. Today, thanks to new technology, keeping a rug pet-proof is easier than ever. Many companies have started manufacturing rugs that are explicitly designed to reject acidic fluids like pet urine and other stains. By creating tight-knit rugs from synthetic fabrics, manufacturers have found a way to lock moisture and odor out of the rug’s base by making sure nothing gets past the surface. In the event of a spill or stain, you can simply mop up the liquid to reveal a completely untainted rug. However, make no mistake: just because a rug is labeled stain-resistant or pet-friendly doesn’t mean you never have to clean it. Like any regular rug, you’ll need to take a trip to the dry cleaners every so often to get your rug thoroughly cleaned. However, you’ll certainly be able to worry less about stains and odor ruining your carpet’s surface.
Have Your Rug Factory Sealed
Another way to prevent staining is to have your rug sealed by the manufacturer. This is a process by which your rug is covered with a factory-grade sealant before it’s even shipped out the door. While there are sealants you can purchase from your local hardware store, they’re not as heavy-duty as the type applied at the factory. They’ll also need to be reapplied every so often. If you’re worried about a variety of stains not limited to pet-related accidents, getting your rug sealed is a great way to go. However, if you’re specifically looking for a rug that won’t fall prey to acidic stains like coffee, wine, and pet urine, you might want to look for something stronger and more targeted. Since pet urine has a tendency to break down fibrous material, sometimes using a basic sealant won’t give you the protection you need to keep your rug safe.
Watch Out for Allergens
Since many pet-proof rugs are made out of synthetic materials, you’ll have to make sure your rug won’t be contributing to any allergies around the house. Synthetic rugs are great for keeping moisture out and eradicating any possibility of mold or mildew. However, many come with VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, that can end up causing irritation and other unpleasant side effects. To check if your rug is safe, look for the green label that tells you your rug is low-VOC. Otherwise, you could end up dealing with nose and throat issues around the house.
Moisture is your number one enemy when it comes to pet stains. However, never underlook the importance of getting a rug that’s also scratch-proof or scratch-resistant. Your pets won’t just want to soil your rug, they’ll try their best to tear it up as well. Getting a rug that’s made of short fibers and a strong, tight weave will minimize the damage from playful kittens or overzealous puppies in your home. If you’re extra worried about damage from scratching, try opting for a tile rug that will let you easily swap out damaged pieces with a low-cost replacement.
Remember to Clean Often
Having a pet-friendly rug is no excuse not to clean regularly in between visits to the dry cleaners. This is especially important for dog owners. Since pet odors don’t always transfer through urine alone, you’ll want to regularly freshen up your rug to make sure your pet isn’t claiming a spot for their own and marking it with odor.