3 Ways to Protect Your Furniture from Your Pets

April 12th, 2023 Blog

A grey short-haired calico cat, laying on a wooden table with a book next to him

Having a pet in your home is one of the great joys in life. They keep us company, can boost our mood and may even reduce our stress levels. While pet parenting offers a wealth of positives, our furry friends can occasionally be problem house guests, especially when it comes to our furniture.

Pets can dig, scratch and chew pieces of furniture. To them, our homes are jungle gyms; they have no understanding or, let’s face it — regard — for antiques or homewares!

In addition to regularly vacuuming fabric furniture, and strategically layering couches and armchairs with washable throws, how can we protect our handcrafted wood furniture from our pets? And how can we do it in a way that keeps them happy and our furniture safe?

1. Create Barriers

One of the most effective ways to protect furniture from your pets is to create barriers. This is especially effective if your dog has bouts of separation anxiety which can lead to destructive behaviours — such as chewing furniture. For some pups, being isolated in a crate while you’re away, or being held in a small area by a strategically placed baby gate, can calm their stress, which in turn can extend the lifespan of your furniture.

2. Make Furniture Unappealing

Another way to protect your furniture from pets is to make it undesirable. For example, dogs and cats dislike the feeling of tinfoil — the crinkle, look, and the foil sound is incredibly unappealing to them.

If your cat is consistently scratching the legs of your dining table — or you keep catching your dog, mouth agape, going in for a sneaky chew of a wooden chair leg — try wrapping them in tinfoil. After several attempts at scratching or gnawing, pets will lose interest and redirect their attention to a surface that feels good — like a scratching post or a bone. This is a simple, low-cost way to protect your dining room table from further damage.

3. Positive Reinforcement

Lastly, try positive reinforcement for good behaviours. Several studies have found that rewarding pets for positive behaviours are far more effective than disciplining or punishing them.

Implement the strategy of positive reinforcement when it comes to pets and your furniture. For example, if your cat starts to scratch at your armchair, distract them from the area with their favourite treat or catnip. Lead them to their scratching post and reward them for using it with a treat.

Similarly, try redirection if a new puppy or an anxious dog has taken to gnawing furniture legs. First, catch their attention with a loud noise — a brief blow into a whistle works well — then offer them a chew stick or a tray with peanut butter. Exchanging prized objects is sure to reward you with success.


If your pet has been actively destroying your furniture, we hope these tips help. Everyday wear and tear in the home when you have pets and kids is normal. But with regular vacuuming and dusting and by implementing other furniture care tips, you’ll undoubtedly extend the lifespan of your wooden furniture — keeping it in excellent condition for many years to come.

That said, if a pet has already caused harm to a piece of your wooden furniture, we can help! We proudly offer professional wood refinishing services. Here, we can seamlessly eliminate scratches, nicks, dents, and discolouration. Reach out today for more information.