5 min read

Even precious pooches and fabulous felines sometimes slip up, causing headaches for sofa owners everywhere. From scratches to smells, it pays to know how to mitigate disaster.

We’ve gathered the most frequently asked questions to create a one-stop guide for lounge-proud pet owners.

How to get ‘dog smell’ out of your sofa

To get rid of the dog smell from your fabric sofa:

  1. Remove any throws, blankets or scatter cushions for deep cleaning.
  2. Vacuum your sofa, making sure you get into every corner.
  3. Wipe the sofa with specially formulated odour remover, then use a colourfast cloth to evenly remove any excess moisture.
  4. Finish with a specialist fabric rinse, leave to dry and vacuum again.

The safest way to tackle smells and stains is with a Sofology care kit with a specially formulated option for fabric, leather or pull-up leather sofas.

Eau de Wet Dog is dog smell’s potent sibling, so tackle the odour before carrying out any further cleaning of your sofa. Read our guide to caring for fabric sofasRead our guide to caring for fabric sofas for guidance on regular cleaning.

To remove the dog smell from a leather sofa:

  1. Gently wipe all leather surfaces with a soft, colourfast cloth to remove fur and debris.
  2. Use the appropriate leather cleaner. You can buy this at the same time as your sofa or at a later date.
  3. Allow surfaces to dry thoroughly since leather pores harbour fewer odours when dry.

Our guide to caring for leather sofas is a great place to get to grips with regular sofa care – never use abrasive products or those containing degreasing agents.

How to stop your dog chewing the sofa

You can use scented repellents to help your dog kick their sofa-chewing habit – just avoid using it directly on the sofa. Instead, spray it on a throw or blanket.

The best way to prevent problem puppies chewing your living room centrepiece, though, is by redirecting your pet’s energy. Ensure your dog is well-exercised and act on any underlying causes of excessive chewing, such as separation anxiety. Then, provide an alternative such as a chew toy.

Why do cats scratch sofas?

Cats have an instinctive desire to use their claws – in the wild, large cats use trees to keep their tools sharp and primed for hunting. Scratching also helps to keep paws clean and mark out territory with their scent.

Domestic cats have the same internal energies – they want to stretch, mark their presence and maintain razor-sharp claws. And that might result in a scratched or even torn sofa.

You can protect your sofa against damage with Sofology’s Sofashield, which provides you with five years of professional assistance – such as repairs to torn panels.

How to prevent pets from scratching your leather sofa

Instinctive behaviours are difficult to prevent, but you can stop your pet scratching the sofa by:

  • Providing an alternative, like a scratching post.
  • Using throws made from colourfast fabric to protect the sofa while you’ve got boisterous puppies and curious kittens.
  • Use a cat-repelling citrus spray on any throws, blankets or cushions (avoid spraying directly on to the sofa).

Why your dog licks the sofa – and how to stop it

Dogs usually lick the sofa because the texture reminds them of a comforting surface – like fur or skin. This behaviour is more common than you might think and may be exacerbated by tasty spills or crumbs on your sofa.

Stop your suite tasting like a treat by:

  • Cleaning up food residue.
  • Using a bitter lick-deterrent spray on a throw or blanket (don’t use directly on sofa).
  • If the behaviour does not cease or is excessive, take your dog to a vet to rule out issues like vitamin deficiency.

How to clean dog pee from your sofa

If your dog pees on your sofa, act quickly:

  1. Use colourfast cloths to absorb the excess liquid before it soaks deep into the upholstery.
  2. Dab gently to move liquid to the centre – and never rub.
  3. Use a tailored odour remover to neutralise the bacteria, then dab dry after five minutes with a colourfast cloth.
  4. Use a pet stain remover to tackle any stubborn marks – this is especially important for white, cream and grey sofas.
  5. Finish with a fabric rinse to neutralise any harsh scents and remove cleaning product residue, which may cause damage over time.

Use Sofology’s care kits for the above – there is a specially developed kit for fabric, leather and pull-up leather Sofology sofas.

How to get rid of cat urine on your sofa

To get rid of cat urine from your sofa:

  1. Use colourfast cloths to absorb the excess liquid before it soaks deep into the upholstery.
  2. Dab gently to move liquid to the centre – and never rub.
  3. Use a tailored odour remover to neutralise the bacteria, then dab dry after five minutes with a colourfast cloth. Cat urine is much stronger than dog urine, so you may need to repeat this process.
  4. Use a pet stain remover to tackle any stubborn marks – this is especially important for white, cream and grey sofas.
  5. Finish with a fabric rinse to neutralise any harsh scents and remove cleaning product residue, which may cause damage over time.

Use Sofology’s care kits for the above – there is a specially developed kit for fabric, leather and pull-up leather Sofology sofas.Never use an ammonia-based cleaner to get rid of cat wee on your sofa, since cat urine contains ammonia so the scent may encourage repeat offences.

How to get dog and cat hair off your sofa

Remove dog and cat hair from your sofa by:

  • Using an adhesive lint roller – and a little perseverance.
  • Vacuuming the sofa.
  • For leather sofas, vacuuming and then wiping with a damp cloth – wipe all of the panel to ensure it dries evenly. This works well for pigmented leather (leather that’s been treated), but be careful with nubuck (that’s worn leather – it often has a slightly softer feel, with a fa) – try it out on a hidden section first, such as the back panel.

How to protect your sofa from cats and dogs

Prevention is better than cure, so the best way to keep your sofa looking great is to minimise contact with pets:

Stop your dog getting on the sofa by creating a comfortable alternative in your living room and sitting on the floor to cuddle your pet.

Use puppy-training methods to encourage your dog to prefer its own bed.

Cats tend to be more difficult to train, so it is often worth investing in protective sofa accessories such as throws, or opt for Sofology’s Sofashield cover.

Crates and child gates are useful for keeping pets out of the living room when you’re not home.

If you have any questions about finding the right approach for your sofa, contact our team.

Sofology
About Sofology

Helping everybody feel happier and more comfortable at home - that's what we’'re all about. Originally founded in the North West of England in 1974, Sofology now spans the UK with 42 stores and over 1000 employees across retail, delivery and head office. We recently opened our latest store in Plymouth, cementing our position as the largest dedicated sofa specialist in the UK.

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