Improved Furniture Protector: Give Your Dog a Lovely, Cozy Place on the Couch

Written By: Sondra Wolfer

“This is just what I was looking for for my leather couch. I’ve tried other covers and also blankets, but they were always falling off. Very nice looking, seems like it will last forever and it hasn’t fallen off once!” – Orvis customer SpringerLove

You don’t want Fido on the furniture. I understand. The shedding, the paw tracks, the eau de wet dog. None of these are pleasant prospects. But I encourage you to reconsider your dog-free divan rule. With pet furniture covers in place, you can easily avoid the few downsides. Meanwhile, the upsides to giving your best friend a spot on the sofa are countless.

First and foremost – your dog covets couch time because of you. It’s a canine compliment you should fully enjoy. You are your dog’s whole world and he wants to be curled up there beside you or, better yet, snuggled on your lap. He’s a member of the pack you’re leading and he feels best when he’s close to you. When you are out, he wants to hop into your favorite armchair because he knows you are brilliant and must be on to something good.

Also consider that your dog brings a slew of germs and bacteria into your house and onto your furniture. I know that sounds like one for the “con” column, but this likely strengthens the immune system of dog owners. People who own dogs get sick less frequently than non-dog owners. And if you’ve got kids, having dogs in the house lowers the chances that your children will one day develop allergies.

With your best pal close by, you’ll spend more time petting him and less time ordering him “Off!” This is a good thing for you because researchers have found that the act of petting a dog can lower your blood pressure and heart rate. Spending quality time with your dog also triggers the release of oxytocin, the hormone associated with feelings of love and deep connection. Dog owners tend to be happier and less prone to depression than people without pets.

Just be sure to use sofa covers so you don’t undermine these health benefits by fretting too much about your furniture.

Consider also that your dog gives you puppy eyes because he loves you. Truly. Not just for the food, warmth and housing you provide. Researchers have found that oxytocin levels also spike in dogs when they play with humans and other animals. So your dog isn’t just your best friend, you’re his best friend too.

It is also possible that your beloved pet’s ancestors made the first moves toward friendship with your ancestors, according to a recent theory of domestication. Dr. Brian Hare, director of the Duke Canine Cognition Center, speculates that the friendliest, least threatening wolves moved close to humans initially. And those that began reading human gestures and expressions were allowed closer still, ultimately developing into the modern dog, Hare suggests.

I hope learning that your dog is smarter than you even thought has you rethinking the house rules. If so, remember that safeguarding your sofa doesn’t have to involve a bed sheet or bath towel. There are plenty of handsome furniture protectors to choose from. So opt for one that suits your style and give your beloved companion lounging rights on the couch. Wouldn’t you say he’s earned it?

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