Your pets normally behave well. However, you’ve just added drapery to the windows around your home, and your pets have decided to make your drapery their new toy. Your cats may pounce on it, climb it, scratch it, or spray it. Your dogs may decide to chew it, snuggle in it, or spray it as well. Even smaller pets, like rabbits, ferrets, or birds, could wreak havoc on your new drapery. However, you don’t want to remove your drapery because it makes your home look so attractive. It gives each room a cozier atmosphere, not to mention a splash of colour or texture. So how can you protect your drapery from your pets?
We’ve given you a few ideas below:
1. Thoroughly house-train your pets.
Pets spray things to act out or mark their territory. Before you install drapes in your home, make sure you have taught your pets not to urinate on your things. You may need to take your pets to professional trainers to ensure their house-training sticks. You can also try to train your pets on your own using a reward and punishment system, but don’t punish your pets too harshly. They may not understand, even if you show them what they did.
2. Close pets out of rooms with drapery when you don’t use them.
Even if your pets behave well in front of you, they may not behave so well when you can’t see them. If you don’t plan to use a room, keep its door closed. With this strategy, your pets have to stay where you can see them at all times. This strategy also helps you control when your pets have access to your drapery. You’ll notice the moment they begin scratching, biting, or spraying, and you can quickly stop them.
3. Purchase cheaper curtains to hang while you train your pets not to touch them.
As you house-train your pets, you should still have inexpensive curtains around. Find old curtains at a local thrift store if necessary. You have to do this because animals often forget their training as soon as a new stimulus arrives. They have to explore this new item, and they may think their training doesn’t apply. If you have old curtains around, your pets won’t feel as curious or adventurous around your drapery when you install it.
4. Temporarily cover your drapes in two-sided tape so your pets learn not to play with them.
After you replace the old curtains with your new drapes, cover them with two-sided tape or aluminum foil. Pets don’t like how these materials feel—especially because tape may pull a little of their fur out. They’ll learn to stay away from your new drapes.
5. Hide cans filled with coins in your drapes.
Any noisemaker will do, but if you don’t want to go out and buy noisemakers, you can make your own by taking aluminum soft drink cans and filling them with pennies or other small, hard objects. When your pets climb or jostle your drapery, the can will clang and scare your pets away.
6. Apply a gentle chemical seal to your drapery.
Depending on your drapery’s material, you can often apply a fabric seal to it. This seal will prevent any liquid or stains from damaging your drapery. You’ll simply have to wipe it clean to get rid of your pets’ spraying. If your drapery’s fabric can’t support a seal, then you should take it to a professional drapery cleaner after your pets dirty it.
7. Give your pet alternative solutions for biting or scratching.
Pets often act out and destroy upholstery and curtains because they feel bored. Give your pets an alternative outlet. Your pets should have scratching posts and toys stationed nearby. Dogs should also have balls, chew toys, and other diversions nearby. Remember to praise your pets when they use their toys instead of scratching the curtains.
8. Don’t let drapery or cords pool on the ground.
If drapery drags on the ground, your pets’ claws or nails could snag in it, even if your pets don’t intend to scratch it. Pooling drapery also gives pets a bigger temptation for rolling in, peeing on, or biting it. For this reason, you need to shorten your drapes so they don’t quite touch the floor. They can brush against it slightly, but they should stay off of it. A similar principle applies to cords.
9. Don’t let cords hang in loops.
If your cords have loops, your pets could accidentally strangle themselves as they try to play with them. Keep your cords short, and cut any loops in them. Wrap them around a knob out of your pets’ reach for extra safety.
With these strategies, your pets and your drapery will stay safe. Choose the ones that will work best in your home. And if you have further questions, check out the rest of our blog for more tips on maintaining your draperies, rugs, and other decorative accents.