Your Happy Guide To Pet-Friendly Interior Design For Indian Homes

by Nikita Raikwar | February 26, 2024 | 7 mins read

Pet friendly interior design for your home

When designing a home with pets, it’s imperative that you look into varied materials and finishes. Here are some materials and finishes you can consider for pet-friendly interior design.

There’s nothing better than having a four-legged friend wagging their tail to show how much they love you for all the treats you share with them. But, with pets come a lot of compromises. One of them begins with choosing the right materials and finishes for your home interiors. Making your home pet-accessible and pet-friendly to avoid mishaps or minor incidents is a great start for pet parents. This guide on pet-friendly interior design will take you through furnishings, materials and finishes you must avoid, ones that you can choose instead and how to make your home a happy experience for your pet. 

Let’s Understand What’s A Finish:

Fixed to the final structure of furniture, finishes help protect your furniture from impact, frost, water, corrosion, abrasion and stains et al. They are often used to style your modular furniture, add texture, colour as well as uniqueness to the overall design theme. A few of these are laminates, veneer, acrylic, lacquered glass and can be used on shutters, wardrobes, cabinets, TV and entertainment units among other surfaces. Read along to know more about finishes that complement pet-friendly interior designs the best:

Avoid Wooden Furniture For Pet-Friendly Interior Design

If you have a young, mischievous pet, chances are that they love to run around and find themselves something to toy with. And if that’s a wooden furnishing in your house, it could well be their favourite target. Hence, it’s best advised not to have wooden furniture on the bottom or lower areas that are accessible to your pet. You can instead opt for metal. 

Metal furnishings are easy to maintain, durable and last long. Not only are they pet-friendly, they are also stain-resistant, making them a favourite amongst Indian homes. Wrought iron sofa sets, aluminium and alloy-based coffee tables are some of the most common home additions to keep your furnishings free from pet accidents.

Where to use them: Metal furnishing can be used for lower cabinets and storage solutions, sofa sets as well as coffee tables. You can also have a metal bed or wardrobe.

Interior design for pets with metal furnishing is easy to maintain
Metal furnishings are ideal pet-friendly home decor
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Go With Ceramic Or Terracotta Tiles For Pet-Friendly Home Design

While they are visually pleasing and add to the aesthetics of your home, hardwood floors aren’t a great choice if you have pets (dogs/cats) at home. Hardwood floors are prone to scratches and can soak liquid, which can be a disaster if your pet has a peeing accident indoors. This can lead to rot and ruin the durability of your hardwood flooring. Instead, you can opt for ceramic or terracotta tiles.

Ceramic tiles are durable, scratch-resistant as well as stain-resistant, whereas terracotta tiles are durable and scratch-resistant and make for a fine addition to your home. These pet-friendly finishes for floors can be used across all sections of your home, be it the living room, kitchen or even the bedroom.

Where to use them: Ceramic, porcelain and terracotta tiles can be used for flooring as well as lower wall design instead of wainscoting interior design.

Pet-friendly home interior design with ceramic or terracotta tiles
Ceramic or porcelain tiles are pet-friendly finishes, durable and scratch-resistant
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Veneers, Laminates And Acrylics — Are They A Good Choice For Pet-Friendly Interior Design?

While laminates may be pet-friendly, they are prone to scratches and stains. If you want to use laminates, ensure that the laminates are away from pet-accessible zones. The same goes with veneers and acrylics. 

Acrylics are easy to clean and stain-resistant. However, they are prone to scratches. Whereas veneers are treated with a coat of varnish and can be cleaned with a moist cloth. These are not stain-resistant, however, can be easily restored for years to come, making it a likeable option for furnishings at home.

Where to use them: Laminates, acrylics and veneers can be used for kids’ bedrooms and play areas, wardrobes as well as modular cabinets in the kitchen.

Pet-friendly interior design with scratch-resistant finishes is ideal
Scratch-resistant finishes are a pet-friendly option

Chrome Is One Of The Pet-Friendly Finishes For Homes With Furry Friends

The idea with pet-friendly furnishings is to choose one that’s scratch resistant and anti-chew at the same time. If you have a puppy or kitten that’s in its teething phase, wooden furnishings can be a crazy playground for your four-legged friend. Instead, opt for chrome furnishings.

Chrome finishes offer durability, sturdiness and increase the lifespan of your metal furnishings. If you have a dedicated cabinet for your pet essentials, these low cabinets can be built with chrome furnishing and work as a great place to stock their food, grooming supplies as well as toys. Besides the access, chrome is easy to clean and low maintenance as well.

Where to use them: Chrome finishing can best be used with kitchen cabinets, study and work units, modular TV units as well as wardrobes.

Pet-friendly finish with chrome that offers durability and sturdiness
Chrome is a sturdy choice for a pet-friendly finish

Overlay Wooden Furniture With Sunmica For Pet-Friendly Home Decor

If you truly are an ardent fan of wooden furniture and don’t want to let go of them for your furry friends, overlaying them with sunmica can be your best bet at increasing the lifespan of your furniture. Sunmica being scratch-resistant offers great scope for pet-friendly home interiors and furnishings. 

As seen in the image, this multi-functional space uses sunmica finish not just for the coffee table and workstation but also for the floor-to-ceiling wardrobe.

Where to use them: Any and all kinds of wooden furniture in your home can be made pet-friendly with a sunmica overlay. These include your kitchen cabinets, wardrobes, storage solutions and even the rarest of bookshelves.

Pet-friendly home decor with overlaying wooden furniture with sunmica
Overlaying wood with sunmica is a pet-friendly option
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Are Microfiber Or Leather Good Choices For Pet-Friendly Home Decor?

While leather’s smooth surface allows for one to easily clean pet hairs off your upholstery, microfiber fabrics are easy to maintain and wash. Offering your cat a scratching post allows them to be away from your upholstery. While you can get away with buff marks on the leather, the nails of your pets can easily tangle themselves into the weaves of a microfiber. 

Leather is expensive whereas microfiber is easily available and economical in pricing. Depending on your pets habits, your budget as well as cleaning expectations, you can choose from either one of these materials for your home’s upholstery.

Where to use them: Leather and microfiber, both, can be used for your sofa’s covers, accent chairs, dining chairs as well as lounge or chaise lounge seats.

Pet-friendly furniture sofa upholstery with leather and microfiber
Pet-friendly interior design for sofa’s upholstery

BONUS TIP: Offer Your Pets A Designated Seat Or Seating Area

If wanting to keep your pet’s hairs and claws away from your seating is a hassle, maybe introducing them to a designated seating space is a great idea for your home. However, please remember that the pet seat should be in a contrasting colour and material than your usual home’s seating arrangement. This allows them to easily differentiate between their seat and yours and will eventually help them to avoid your home’s seating arrangement altogether.

Pet-friendly living room ideas with seat in a contrasting colour
A cat sits on her favourite bed in the living room

And with that, we come to an end of our home interior design tips for pets that are accident-proof and allow for a safe, happy and comfortable environment for your pets and you at home. 

Loved reading about pet-friendly home interiors? You can check out more about materials and finishes by visiting our guides section. And if you wish to transform your space into a pet-friendly home for your furry BFF, feel free to book a free consultation with our expert designers at DesignCafe today.

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Nikita Raikwar is a content writer at Design Cafe's home interiors blog.

Nikita Raikwar

Nikita Raikwar is a Content Marketing Specialist at DesignCafe. She is an ambivert with a love for travel and dancing. You will often find her with her favourite book in her reading nook, urban sketching, or practicing the art of coffee making. She is your go-to for crime and thriller movie recommendations and loves to club her movie marathons with a Margherita pizza in one hand and a Pinot Grigio in the other.

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