A Quick Guide to Pet Furniture

Furniture and beds are an important part of life—especially for pets, as they tend to sleep the day away.

There’s even a relevant adage: “you should never skimp on things that separate you from the ground.” This typically refers to things like shoes, tires, and, most importantly, your bed. The same goes for your pets—you shouldn’t be afraid to spend a little extra on high-quality items that go between your pet and the floor, particularly pet furniture.

Pet Beds

Pet beds come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials. It’s important to choose one that offers the proper amount of support for your dog or cat. Older pets can benefit from orthopedic beds, which offer support similar to a mattress and are great for relieving joint pain. Many of these are made with memory foam. The Plush Memory Sleeper is a great option that offers maximum support. The shape doesn’t matter too much as long as your pet can fit on top and stretch out comfortably. Keep in mind that some anxious dogs and cats enjoy beds that have raised sides because it makes them feel enclosed and protected.

You might also consider a heating pad inside and a cooling mat. You can switch them out as the seasons pass to help keep your pet comfortable in the cold and heat. Waterproof liners can also help with older dogs suffering from incontinence, or just for any family that is worried about accidents and the cleanup.

When it comes to materials, you want something that’s comfy but also durable. Nylon fabric is a popular choice because it’s tear- and abrasion-resistant, and easy to clean. However, it’s not always the most comfortable. Microfiber covers are another great option that provide tons of comfort and are super easy to clean!

Check out this list of suggestions by dog experts for more options.

Dog laying on elevated bed

Elevated vs Ground

One question pet owners often ask is whether elevated pet beds perform as well as regular, ground-level ones. The answer really depends on your needs. Elevated beds can offer more breathability, making them cooler in the summer months. They can also be easier to clean than some of the on-the-ground options.

However, if your pet suffers from arthritis, it’s probably best to avoid these so as not to aggravate the symptoms. You can, however, add stairs to help combat this.

Cat Towers

Cat towers are often a necessity in any home with felines. In addition to the comfort they provide by allowing your cat to sit up high, they also act as scratching posts to help keep them away from the couch.

Towers come in all kinds of shapes, but not all of them provide the support your cat might need. Active cats should have plenty of spots to climb on, holes to wiggle through, and posts to scratch. Older cats might benefit from shorter towers that are easier on their legs.

Material is an important consideration when buying a cat tower too. It needs to be strong enough to withstand continuous scratching if you want it to last. Sisal rope is a popular and sturdy material that stands up over time. For the flat areas, you’ll want something softer for your cat to lie on, like faux fur.

Check out the list of cat towers at Cat Life Today for some great choices.

What about your furniture?

Now, we all know that plenty of dogs and cats prefer the family couch to their own bed. That’s why it’s important to consider your own furniture when prepping for a pet.

It might surprise you to learn that leather is usually the best material for your couch if you have pets. True leather is too thick for an animal’s nails or claws to puncture. A leather couch is both durable and easy to clean. Faux leather, on the other hand, should be avoided because it tends to show scratch marks easily.

Next in line is microfiber. The material is thick and not easily torn. It’s also much cheaper than leather. The only con to microfiber is that it tends to absorb stains, so if your furry friend has a habit of marking his territory you might want to steer clear.

Loose weave fabrics should be avoided at all costs. These are made with an open weave, which often looks like little loops, and can cause claws to snag. They also unravel over time. Silk and velvet are also poor choices in homes with pets. In addition to being difficult to clean after an accident, both of these fabrics are hair magnets. If your pet sheds, your guests will know it as soon as they spot your couch.

Of course, there’s always the option of using a cover for your couches and bed!

Meet the Author: Ben Kerns

Ben Kerns is a freelance writer, photographer and outdoor adventurer based out of San Diego. When he’s not busy working you can find him hopping across the world looking for new places to climb big rocks. He’s also fanatically obsessed with funding his outdoor obsessions for as little money as possible. This stuff gets expensive.

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