A dog is laying on a rug in a living room with two kids.

How to Choose the Best Rugs for Pets

Pets are a part of many people’s lives. They’re our family members, and that oftentimes means they live indoors with us. But even though we love our dogs and cats cuddling with us in our living spaces, they tend to leave behind messes that we’re left to clean up. In order to achieve a healthy balance between a home with animals and a home that maintains its charm and style, it’s important to have a rug that with last through pet cleanups.

Here are five ways to find a rug that is pet-proof and ensure it’ll last:

Assess your pet’s mess

Do your pets shed a lot? Do they often have accidents in your living spaces? The first step in buying the best rug for pets is acknowledging what you’re dealing with in terms of the messes your pets produce. This will help you decide whether you need a natural fiber rug that’s easy to clean every once in a while or a synthetic fiber rug that can be cleaned and wiped down daily.

Research durable rug materials

Once you figure out what kind of messes your rug should expect, it’s time to learn about different types of rugs and how they live up to daily wear and tear. Natural fiber rugs are typically made from cotton, hemp, jute, sea grass, silk, sisal and wool. Although most of these fibers are strong enough for medium-traffic spaces, they have particular cleaning methods, as do synthetic fiber rugs. Synthetic fiber rugs are made from nylon, polyester, olefin and triexta. Read tips for cleaning rugs to help guide your search.

Find a style within your chosen material

There are many different styles of rugs, whether you’re interested in a more modern or traditional look for your living space. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice style when searching for a rug that will hold up to pet messes. One great option is to search for an indoor/outdoor rug, which you can find made with both natural and synthetic materials. Indoor/outdoor rugs are designed with the elements in mind, so they’re usually made to withstand getting wet and experiencing a lot of traffic.

Find out how to clean your rug at home

No matter what rug you choose, it’s pretty much inevitable that it’ll be spilled on or collect a mess at some point, whether it’s dog hair, urine or mud. When purchasing a new rug, know how to clean it before you commit. Then once you bring it home, you’ll be ready if and when it’s in need of an at-home cleaning.

Get the rug cleaned twice a year

Even though you can clean your rug daily or weekly at home, it’s important to also get a professional rug cleaning — and we suggest getting it done at least twice a year. This will sanitize the rug, clean out the dirt that’s buried within its fibers, and get it looking its best.

Has your pet left a little surprise on your rug? Learn how to get pet odors out of an antique rug.