Help Selecting a Pet-Proof Couch

A reader asks for help finding a pet-proof couch that can repel stains and pet hair and withstand claws. One word, baby: microfiber.

Pet-proof couch?
Pet-proof couch?

Question: I’m looking into buying new couches and considering a microfiber that has a polyurethane coat on it so it is smooth like leather. I was told that the microfiber would stand up better to claws. I also need something I can just wipe the fur off. I’m not looking to spend the money on real leather. Any advice? -Jennifer B.

Hi Jennifer, microfiber is the way to go! I found an amazing couch, chair and ottoman at the thrift store last year for $125. The set was covered in a beautiful, soft, sage-green velvety fabric that I knew the dogs would destroy within a few years. This is why I only buy furniture second-hand.

I groaned the first time I saw one of my Dachshunds lift his leg on it. I knew it was going to happen, but I also knew it was the beginning of the end for my poor furniture. I headed for the kitchen and grabbed the spray bottle of Nature’s Miracle, prepared to remove the smell, but resigned to staring at the stain for the rest of the couch’s life.

Much to my surprise, the stain came right off without rubbing or scrubbing. That’s when I realized my “velvet” couches were actually microfiber! I spent the rest of the afternoon wiping off old stains, until the furniture looked almost new.

Microfiber is a soft, durable fabric that repels liquids, safeguards against bacteria and resists odors and stains. If your pet eliminates on the couch, the stain won’t set; even if you don’t discover it for days, you’ll still be able to remove the pet stain with a fabric-safe spray cleaner or a pet enzyme cleaner such as Nature’s Miracle Advanced Stain & Odor Remover (affiliate link). In other words, it’s magic.

Like your pets, microfiber naturally “sheds” hair, which means that all you’ll really need to do to collect pet hair is run a dusting cloth or damp sponge over the surface.

As you pointed out, a polyurethane-coated microfiber couch looks very similar to a leather couch. Although no fabric is impervious to cat claws, polyurethane-coated microfiber holds up well to dog claws. The fabric is slick enough that dogs tend to slip off it instead of scratching holes into it.

Although there is no true pet-proof couch, polyurethane-coated microfiber darned close. If you choose a leather-look microfiber couch, you’ll be buying a durable piece of furniture that will stand up to years of canine and feline abuse. You won’t be limited to dark fabrics, either!

Of course, your couch would have to be truly magic, indeed, to withstand chewing and attempts at de-stuffing. Good luck with that!

Photo: Clexow/Flickr

Tamar Love Grande

View posts by Tamar Love Grande
Tamar Love Grande, former associate editor, is a Crazy Dog Person who has fostered and found homes for more than 200 dachshunds in the past few years. Tamar lives in Los Angeles with her husband, her cat and far too many wiener dogs.

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