D…COR in Decor
itís a dogís world, we just live in it
The dogís status in the home is on the rise with non-slip floors and upholstery fabrics that resist odours.
Doghouses, even the classiest ones, may soon be passé. Most dogs now spend more than half their time indoors in the family home, which increasingly tends to feature dog-friendly walls, floors and upholstery.
We’re not talking about cutesy nods to the adorableness of dogs, but about substantial human commitment — and dollars — to safer, more comfortable environments.
Talk about creature comforts. A house in Culver City, Calif., is being built from the ground up to ease life for a French sheepdog named Hobbes, a hairy 6-year-old not too steady on his feet.
Hobbes’ owners, Joanna Brody and her husband, Thomas Small, have altered the architect’s plans to include steps with a gentle incline because as Hobbes gets older, he won’t be able to climb traditional stairs.
Their architect, Whitney Sander of Los Angeles, says: “Floors will be rough nonslip concrete instead of the polished finish we’d planned because Hobbes tends to slip around on anything smooth.”
Kari Whitman, a Los Angeles interior designer, sees dogs living the Hollywood high life. At the home of a well-known actor and actress, whose names she declines to divulge, she installed “a huge outdoor tub with hot and cold running water, decorated with beautiful Mexican tiles. These people have two big dogs and want to bathe them outdoors.”
New York design consultant Julia Szabo reupholstered her sofa to match her dog. “I covered it in Ultrasuede the exact same gingery shade as my pit bull, Pepper,” says Szabo, author of Animal House Style: Designing Your Home To Share With Your Pets.
“So many advances have been made in fabrics, paints and flooring just since the book came out, that it is now possible to design interiors almost impervious to damage from pets,” she says.
New modular carpeting by InterfaceFLOR is installed in easily removable 19-inch squares. If your pet has an accident, you just replace the stained square with a new one. Fabrics from Crypton mimic Ultrasuede, velvet or anything else you might want. They are super strong and resist odours, bacteria, stains and rips and have a moisture barrier that protects the cushion beneath, the manufacturer says.
Szabo says her pets tend to rub against walls and mark them up. “Benjamin Moore has a wipeable, flat-finish paint (Regal Matte) that didn’t exist when I wrote the book.”
Los Angeles Times