interiors & styling

Family & Pet Friendly Sofas

Family & Pet Friendly Sofas - roomfortuesday.com I’ve received this post request multiple times and thought it was finally time to roundup some great family & pet-friendly sofas! We’ve been talking a lot about upholstered furniture lately, so it felt fitting. I also wanted to chat about what exactly is considered “pet friendly”, and things to look for when choosing upholstered furniture that is capable of withstanding kids, pets, or even accident prone adults. Click through for a few good sofa roundups (of all colors and styles), to see some pretty cute dogs sitting on sofas, and of course to talk furniture selection & durability with me. I hope it’s helpful!

I’ll begin by saying, we don’t have kids, but we do have two dogs and they are allowed on all of our furniture. They’re apart of our family, they live in this home with us, and they lounge on the furniture however they please. With that said, they don’t destroy our furniture. They’re house trained, so they don’t chew, scratch, or bite / eat our furniture or decor. Performance fabrics and quality construction can only do so much if your dog (or child) isn’t trained to respect your home. You have to choose furniture that best fits your family, home, and lifestyle… and the rules you have in place!

Family & Pet Friendly Sofas - roomfortuesday.com First, what should you look for in a family or pet friendly sofa? Durability and longevity should be at the top of your list when hunting for furniture that is considered family friendly. Here are a five excellent materials and features to keep an eye out for…

  1. Performance Fabric // Sofas upholstered in performance fabrics are capable of repelling stains & spills, are UV resistant, and are as durable as it gets.
  2. Slipcovers // Most removable slipcovers are machine washable, making them very easy to clean on a regular basis.
  3. Floor Protectors // In addition to protecting the sofa itself, you’ll also want to consider the floor beneath it. Look for solid hardwood legs with adjustable floor protectors, or caster wheels that provide mobility, while protecting  your floors from being scratched or marred.
  4. Quality Craftsmanship // Quality built sofas often start with the frame or construction… look for a kiln-dried hardwood frame or something equally as durable.
  5. Cushion Construction // Have you ever seen cushions that flatten with use over time, and look like pancakes after only a few years? If you like cushions that retain their shape, look for down filled or down wrapped cushions! You can continually fluff them for long lasting (years!) comfort and support. They’ll hold their shape better than foam that crushes over time.

Family & Pet Friendly Sofas - roomfortuesday.com You can also read my 10 tips for identifying quality furniture here! If you’re taking the custom route, check out my favorite custom furniture resources here… as well as an in-depth post into the custom furniture ordering process (what that looks like from start to finish). If you’re curious about how to choose the right fabric for your home, revisit this post! I’ve shared so many resources over the years that should provide additional insight.

Family & Pet Friendly Sofas - roomfortuesday.com The following are all pet and family friendly options! I’ve selected them because they meet the standards I previously mentioned. Ready to see what I found?

Click directly on the items to be redirected to the source- or use the numbered links below the collage to shop…

01: macy sofa // 02: merritt sofa // 03: dune sofa // 04: fabienne sofa

From the above roundup, I’m particularly attracted to the comfortable, classic, and casual look of number one and number three! Then again, you know I love a timeless white sofa.

01: brooke sofa // 02: anza sofa // 03: gage settee // 04: sullivan sofa

I adore a colored, jewel toned sofa! You really can’t go wrong with any of these options, but the shape of number one is my personal favorite. I’ll always love a traditional rolled arm!

01: jesper sofa // 02: maxwell sofa // 03: ames sofa // 04: miramar sofa

Now we’re into the dark and moody options, and LEATHER options. I like leather for its durability, high-end look, and because it will last forever when taken care of. There is a reason we opted for a leather upholstered bed. It’s timeless and durable!

Family & Pet Friendly Sofas - roomfortuesday.com So what exactly are performance fabrics? They’re textiles that have been engineered to be more durable than traditional upholstery fabrics (wool, linen, cotton, poly, etc). They’re designed to resist stains, mold, mildew, UV radiation, liquid, are antimicrobial, and they have a higher rub count (for added durability).

For example, Crypton, an eco friendly, high-performance fabric is well known for repelling stains and spills altogether (it won’t absorb), making it ideal for families with pets or children. There are a variety of popular performance fabric brands. I wanted to make a list so you could easily identify and research, and compare them individually…

  • Crypton
  • Sunbrella
  • Revolution
  • Sustain
  • InsideOut
  • Nuvella
  • Kashmira
  • Bella-Dura
  • Europel
  • Ultrasuede
  • WearProof
  • CovingtonHP
  • Perennials

Lots of brands will also carry their own line of performance fabrics that are made with the same technology! You can usually find their specs and compare to some of the more common brands (like Cyrpton).

Family & Pet Friendly Sofas - roomfortuesday.com We love our dogs so much and I like seeing them snuggled up, looking happy on our furniture. That may not be the popular opinion, but that’s how we operate in our house. I also like not having to worry that they’re going to ruin our furniture. Was this post helpful? I’d love to hear your favorite sofas from the roundups! Do you have any questions about pet or family friendly sofas for me? How about performance fabrics? Maybe it would be fun (or ultra boring, ha!) to breakdown and compare the different performance fabric brands. Let me know. That might be a snooze. Happy Tuesday!

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  • Reply
    Peggi
    March 30, 2021 at 5:53 am

    Joe is snoring beside me on the sofa right this minute, so you can guess the rules at our house. My strategy, in general, is to buy vintage and avoid anything too precious. That being said, I am wanting a new love seat, so I have a few questions about the performance fabric. How does it feel? Outdoor fabric can be so stiff, and the earlier performance fabrics felt and looked 🤢. (*ultra suede*) Also, I prefer a slipcover, so the entire sofa can be washed. Are slipcovers made in performance fabric, too? Or is that redundant? I love down cushions, but I am surprised to learn that they wear so well. From your round up, my favorites are #1 and #3 from the light neutral section, but you know I would choose a colorful iteration. Of course, if I happen upon a vintage leather Chesterfield, well… That last photo of the boys together?😍
    Happy Tuesday, Sarah!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 30, 2021 at 8:16 pm

      I just love your floofy fur babies! That is another amazing point, and another reason to buy vintage. Not all performance fabric is created equally! There are definitely superior brands (non toxic, eco friendly, have a really nice feel to them, repel stains, etc), of course the price varies depending on all of that. Crypton is my favorite because it’s non toxic, eco, is super performance, and it feels like regular fabric (not outdoor or stiff). Our slipcovered sofa in the basement isn’t performance! It’s made of white denim, which is really durable and has softened over time. I actually love the ease of tossing it into the wash once every few months. It’s currently covered with muddy paw prints (lol!), so it’s time for a deep clean cycle. Of course I love all of your picks! I’ll be dreaming of vintage chesterfields tonight. Ha! Hope you had an amazing day :) xo

  • Reply
    Paige
    March 30, 2021 at 8:19 am

    Very timely post! We move into the new house in less than a month, and we have been going round and round over the sofa/sofas. Our 8 year old GSP is more important than the furniture and he loves to lay on the sofa and cuddle with us in his old age so we have yet to commit spending the money on what it is essentially his dog bed. I think we will adjust him to the new house with our current sofa while I use this post to research the replacement.

    I completely agree about house training kids and dogs. Our boys grew up around antiques and learned that wide open play is not appropriate inside. We have different kinds of fun inside. Same with the dog. He have a high energy bird dog, but he has never been anything but a perfect house dog. General rule for kids and pets…you can do all the things, just not everywhere at the same time.

    Sorry I have commented in. a while. Time is short with all the last minute house decisions being made, but your blog is always a happy place to calm my design cluttered/maybe slightly stressed brain.

    Have a great day!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 30, 2021 at 8:09 pm

      That is such exciting news, Paige! I totally agree with you and feel like our pets are more important than any piece of furniture could ever be. We don’t have children, but I love hearing that your kids are respectful and appreciate the things they grew up with in your home. That’s a big deal! We have friends & family who took a similar approach to your own, and others who purchased furniture knowing it would someday be replaced once their children had grown. Personally, I think you CAN have the best of both worlds (pets or kids and nice things), but I know it’s a touchy subject. I love your general rule- that’s a good one! No apology needed at all- I’ll be here anytime you want to chat or share. You have bigger, exciting things on your plate to enjoy right now! Although I do love hearing this blog is still a happy place for you :) Day made! xo

  • Reply
    Frannie B
    March 30, 2021 at 8:54 am

    Happy Tuesday, Sarah! When I bought my current home 20+ years ago, I invested in a traditional, roll-armed sofa from LaZBoy. I say “invested” because at the time spending over $1000 for a sofa was a huge bite to my wallet, but this sofa has proven to be worth every penny! It is well-made, has the kiln-dried hardwood frame and the hand-tied springs, and still feels as good to sit (and nap!) on as it did the day that I got it. AND, it has survived 8 doggos and outlasted 6 of them, three of them from puppy stage all the way to seniors+. Would I make the same choice again, knowing what I do now? Absolutely, although the fabric choices now are much better than they were decades ago. I went with a flowered, cotton chintz covering that is looking rather shabby now, and if I had to do it again I would definitely choose a performance fabric for an even longer-lasting investment. I have been waffling about having it recovered versus down-sizing to a smaller piece, but I’m not seeing anything that I like as much in either fabrics or smaller sofas so at the moment I’m stalled. For now, inexpensive, semi-fitted and washable slipcovers allow me and the dogs to enjoy lounging on ‘our’ sofa without too much fuss. I will be checking out what’s new in the Crypton and other performance fabrics, and see if there’s a good fit for us. Thanks again for your post today, as always your advice has been spot-on!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 30, 2021 at 8:04 pm

      Hope you had a great day, Frannie! That is an expensive investment… even today. I’m glad it was a worthy purchase! It sounds like your family and pets have loved it well over the years :) Performance fabrics have definitely evolved and are even more durable and aesthetically pleasing. I often can’t feel or tell the difference in outdoor, performance fabrics and indoor fabrics now. The technology has really come a long way! Slipcovers are so handy. I wash ours every 3 months and it has held up nicely to our dogs. That’s an amazing solution until you find a sofa that feels like a great fit. Thanks for reading!

  • Reply
    Lauren
    March 30, 2021 at 9:19 am

    I’m so happy you made the point about performance fabrics only going as far as your kids/pets are trained. It’s the most valid point I’ve ever heard. Jeff and I disagree completely in this area. I think he and his brother largely ruled the roost as kids (they once broke the door of a solid oak wardrobe three days after it was purchased🙄). My rules sometimes feel a bit much, and I’m sure the kids eye roll constantly, but I refuse to have the house looking like a hurricane came through, just because I have kids.
    On to the roundup…number two from the neutrals just steals my heart! I adore everything about it! Followed by number 1&2 from the dark neutrals. I personally would love the breakdown of different performance fabric brands, because I think having a visual of what each looks like, what the features are, etc would be amazing. Maybe even with an info graphic to pin for later. Super helpful post-now I can’t stop thinking about that sofa! Haha. Happy Tuesday Sarah!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 30, 2021 at 8:00 pm

      It’s such a touchy subject… especially in regards to kids. Some of our friends & family have the mindset that things in their home have to be replaceable because their kids will destroy it anyway, and other friends & family members have the opposing argument- they have nice things and are teaching their kids to respect their home (of course knowing that accidents happen every once in awhile). My childhood sounds a lot like Jeffs. I was jumping on furniture, backflipping, putting my muddy feet on the walls (country kid life, ha), and my parents were fine with it. I feel like if we were to have children, I’d be the opposite type of parent when it comes to how the house is treated. Haha! What a tricky balance… you have a tough job! I loved that neutral option as well. Performance fabrics are definitely not created equal- some are healthier than others (non toxic, eco friendly, etc), and they definitely look and feel different. Crypton is my personal favorite. Hope you had a happy Tuesday :) xox

  • Reply
    Jennifer Laura
    March 30, 2021 at 9:36 am

    Such a good round-up! We currently have a white Pottery Barn sofa and I’m already itching to get something quite a bit different!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 30, 2021 at 7:53 pm

      Thank you so much, Jennifer! We also have a white Pottery Barn sectional. We still like it, but I’d love to find something in a different size to better fit our space (it moved with us from our previous home). It has held up well though!

  • Reply
    Meredith
    March 30, 2021 at 9:52 am

    Thank you for this. My boyfriend and I moved in together in December, and I’m currently on the hunt for a comfortable, pet-friendly sofa. I thought I had settled on a Pottery Barn option, but I just ordered swatches from Maiden Home.

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 30, 2021 at 7:50 pm

      That’s so exciting, Meredith! Our sofa in our basement living room is from Pottery Barn, and the sofa in our main living room is from Maiden Home… you can’t go wrong! :)

  • Reply
    Madeline Menendez
    March 30, 2021 at 10:36 am

    Thank you for the great tips… I’m seriously thinking of getting a new doggy… I love the white dog breed you have… any chance you can share the breed and if you purchased from a breeder? Who the breeder is with me.
    Thanks Madeline Menendez at Casa Mady…

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 30, 2021 at 7:49 pm

      Cash (our little guy) is a Wire Fox Terrier. We actually rescued him, then later found out his breed! He is so special, spunky, and loving… he truly has the best personality.

  • Reply
    Colleen
    March 30, 2021 at 12:06 pm

    What a beautiful roundup of stunning sofas! I have been sofa searching for several months trying to narrow down a durable, long lasting, pet friendly sofa for our cottage. Our home here currently rocks the jewel tones which I absolutely love ❤️ But for our cottage I was thinking of a lovely oatmeal color but of course haven’t quite decided. I adore number 2 in the light neutrals, number 4 in the colorful category looks incredibly comfy and number 2 on the dark neutrals is a winner in the looks with a gorgeous showy leg. Ultimately I have to sit, lie down and test every sofa before I purchase so ordering a sofa online would be quite difficult for me. I’m the person in the showroom that kicks off the shoes and makes myself right at home 😬 I appreciate good quality upholstery and durable comfortable fabrics that have longevity for everyone in the family including our snuggly pups 🥰 Our current dog Lorrie is a shedding dog the fabric choice is quite important cause her fur sticks to everything 🙄 Thanks for this fantastic roundup Sarah and the performance fabrics are certainly a great option with kids and pets. Have a terrific day!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 30, 2021 at 7:47 pm

      Thank you, Colleen. Your cottage is going to be so amazing! I love all of your picks. I totally understand wanting to experience furniture, see how it sits, touch the fabric, etc. It’s a big investment and in person shopping really is the best way to know exactly what you’re going to get (easier said than done these days, but still)! Awww Lorrie is worth it though :) I hope you had a beautiful Tuesday! xo

  • Reply
    Kristin Richardson
    April 1, 2021 at 6:32 pm

    I have had horrible luck with couches my entire adult life. Most of that was self inflicted since we never splurged, though $800 on a fabric couch back in 2000 was not exactly cheap. Our most recent mistakes are all on me though. I bought an off white sectional with the assurance it was a performance fabric, claimed I could even clean it with bleach if needed. Ah, nope. All it ever did was make water rings no matter what I was cleaning with, pilled like crazy, and short dog hair refused to ever dislodge. The biggest mistake was a FB find…. I’d yearned for a leather Chesterfield for years. Thought I’d hit gold when I found one last summer for $1000. Bought it, now regret it with a passion. It’s not real leather apparently as it’s scratched and has pieces that are chipping off, and that’s with light use and no dogs allowed. My thought is leather will scratch or crack eventually, but chip off? Probably not. So I’m back to using a 35+ year old couch I inherited from grandma that is ugly fabric but in the best shape. Just needs new back cushions and a slipcover. Secretly though I still want a leather couch. What’s been your experience? Should leather “chip”? Will doggie nails really gouge terribly? It’s going to be a hard sell to get the husband to agree to another leather one again.

    • Reply
      Sarah
      April 4, 2021 at 6:02 pm

      Ah, no. I’m sorry to hear that, Kristin! The leather definitely sounds like it was vinyl or a faux product. Leather should really last a lifetime (without chipping or peeling), and we haven’t had any issues with our leather furniture at all. Even when our dogs scratch it, it can easily be rubbed out with some oil. It sounds like your grandma’s sofa is a keeper! Sometimes those are the best ones and I bet it’s well made.

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