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Everything you should know about pet-friendly sofas

  • Pet-friendly sofas
  • Stain-resistant sofas
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Olivia Lowry
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In the UK, it’s estimated that 62% of us now have a pet living at home, with cats and dogs staying strong as the most popular companions*. At Swyft we’re no different, and our team get loads of pictures, videos and messages from our pet-owning customers daily.

As much as we love our dogs, cats and other animals, we know the pain of a chewed sofa leg or a scratched cushion. That’s why as pet owners and interior experts ourselves, we’ve put together this quick-fire guide. We’ll go over the do’s and don’ts and let you in on the tried and tested fabric types that our pet-owning customers rave about.

pet-friendly sofas pet-friendly fabrics for sofas stain-resistant sofas dogs on sofa pets on sofaImage - @milothevis Model 03 sofa in stain-resistant Pumice Linen

What is the best fabric for a sofa with pets?

The good news is it’s definitely possible to have an aesthetically pleasing sofa with a pet. The best fabric for a sofa with pets is one that’s durable enough to withstand pet damage, but soft enough to be comfortable for you. In general, we find our untextured velvet sofas and faux leather sofas score top marks for households with four-pawed family members. 

Angus (owned by Swyft Trade Manager Kyla) tries out the Model 05 in Mustard

Swyft tip: Look for sofas with a ‘rub count’ or ‘martindale’ score higher than 30,000. The higher the number is, the more durable the fabric is. Explore durable fabrics here.

Are velvet sofas pet-friendly?

The majority of our pet-owning customers say great things about our velvet sofas. For cats and dogs, flat velvets in particular not only look great, but are durable thanks to their shorter, smoother fibres. This makes wiping up muddy paw prints and brushing off pet hair much easier as dirt and dander can’t penetrate the fibres as much.


Image - @littlemcrhouse Model 02 sofa in Brick. "Mags is one mucky pup and loves making herself at home on the sofa, but luckily with one swift vacuum the velvet always looks as good as new!"

When you add stain-resistant velvets to the mix, you’ve got a great pet-friendly combination. Stain-resistant velvet sofas can be wiped clean with just water, making light work of pet mess.

Why are cats obsessed with certain fabrics?

If you’ve noticed your cat’s got a penchant for textured fabrics, you’re not alone. Cats need to scratch to keep their claws sharp, to stretch out and to mark their territory. Woven, tactile fabrics like give your cat the best traction and resistance, which is why sofas and armchairs can be so tempting to scratch.

Cat Ginny on the Model 07 sofa in stain-resistant Pumice Linen

(*Source: Statista Share of households owning a pet in the United Kingdom (UK) from 2011/12 to 2021/22)

 Swyft team pets 
Order A Free Fabric Swatch Box Shop Velvet Sofas

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