Your home isn’t only for humans. Your animals deserve comfort, too. Unfortunately, a lot of homeowners neglect the carpet—which leads to disasters when the pets are let loose. If you have a dog or a cat, you probably know how troublesome gnawing, scratching or premature bathroom visits can be. Fear not, however, because we’re here to help. Check out these five great ways to pet-proof your carpet.


Tip One: Child-Lock Your Garbage Can


Even if your trash is in the kitchen, it should have a child lock. Garbage tossed about the floor can end up on your carpet. Even worse, human food can turn into vomit when the dog comes around. To avoid unexpected diarrhea and vomit, make sure your animals aren’t getting into the trash.


Tip Two: Keep the Doors Shut


Shut and secured, that is. To pet-proof your living room carpet without covering it in unsightly covers, you’ll need to stop dirt from its place of origin. Namely, outside. By limiting your animal’s access to the outdoor world, you can regulate what comes in and out. At the end of the day, animals with clean feat aren’t nearly as much of a problem.


Tip Three: Pick Your Color Wisely


Next, you should pick out an area rug which won’t show dirt, grime, dust and hair. You might not be able to change the color of your living room’s base rug, but you can embellish in style. If you’re a pet owner, your freedom may be determined by your room’s color scheme. This is okay, however, because you’ll still have plenty of deep colors to choose from.


Tip Four: Pick Your Patterns Wisely


Small patterns work wonders. Why? Because striking out solid portions with small-scale patterns is an excellent way to hide stains, mask dirt and present an area free of stains. Find a pattern which complements your living room’s overall area, and make sure you’re planning your carpet around your bigger furniture items, too.


Tip Five: Rope


Yes, rope. Both cats and dogs love the stuff, and it can distract them from going after the carpet. Cat trees, tug-of-war ropes and a variety of toys can distract your furry friend from the carpet, making sure they’re focusing on the right chewable items. Make sure you remove the rope once it’s frayed, however, as remaining threads can make even the cleanest carpet look a little dirty.