Dear Pet Lovers,
On this fourth and final blog chapter, I will be revealing two important subjects: Safety and hygiene for your pet, which can affect your health as well as your dogs.
Looking back at the history of dogs and their ancestors, the wolf, they don’t have to care much about hygiene since they are always changing their whereabouts and sleeping places. Our pets, on the other hand, have pre-established places that if not maintained with the highest hygiene level, could affect our health and theirs.
Apart from dust, dirt, parasites, skin scales and other undesirable substances, dogs are also impregnated by modern human contamination, such as tar, oil, gasoline, etc. All these can be found on the pet’s mattress surface. The loss of body fluids caused through indigestion and marking, the occasional wetting especially with puppies and older dogs, from saliva through to self-grooming and objects brought in from outside, also cause contamination of the dogs sleeping area.
A prime example of the importance of hygiene is shown in client of mine. Tasha, a beautiful and lovely English Bulldog, who was loved and well taken care of, had suffered from a skin complication and hair loss for years. She slept on a very pretty dog foam bed. The mattress cover was washed on a regular basis, however, this cover didn’t protect the mattress from infiltrations and the foam mat became a health hazard for the dog and the children of the family without anyone knowing it. As the problem got worst, the owner took Tasha to a dermatologist veterinarian who discovered the cause: accumulation of bacteria in the mattress foam over the years caused by infiltrations and therefore recommend the highest level of hygiene to benefit the pet and his family.
Tasha’s owner got in contact with me after hearing about how my concept focused on maximum hygiene. Six months later, Tasha’s skin problem was practically non-existent and the family also discovered that the children’s chronic coughing stopped which they found was caused by playing around the bacteria infested bed.
To guarantee optimal hygiene and protection against moisture of any kind in my designs, the mattresses and all leaning sides are equipped with high quality, waterproof and breathable-elastic protective covers, using a compound of soft cotton-towel mix on the outside with a laminated lining of polyurethane. These are the same materials used for babies and small children. It has been tested for harmful substances and meets the Eco Tex Standard 100/Test Nr. 2009AN2228AITEX.
Our decorative covers are made of high quality and resistant material which are tightly woven to avoid injury from getting their nails caught in the fabric while nesting and scratching. All our deco covers (protective mattress covers) are easy to change (made with extra-long zippers) for disinfection and suitable for the machine washing or dry cleaning. All our models include one additional replacement mattress cover, which is important for frequent changing to help keep their fur clean.
Access to the pet’s beds should be easy, but also needs an adequate height, because dogs also move during sleep and could eventually slide out from their resting place. It is not all about the overview, but also about having a better distance from the ground which can help avoid problems caused by the floor dust that’s inhaled permanently by our pets.
Therefore all our furniture is slightly elevated to avoid the dust and bacteria from the ground and to provide a better view for the pets. Nevertheless the height is low enough to enable easy access and to prevent injuries by falling too far.
Another client was Moritz, a tiny adorable long hair dachshund with extremely short legs, who could never jump on a sofa, therefore remained on the floor and lived with serious respiratory problems. The veterinary eventually discovered this was provoked by the floor dust. As a result, Moritz’s owner selected from my collection a suitable contemporary piece of furniture. Within a few weeks Moritz’s respiratory problems disappeared, and now enjoys his new higher position in the room.
Our innovative technical development of a special mattress support for pets is not only useful to maintain a straight shape and avoid curving, but guarantees an optimal hygiene since it is easily cleaned or disinfected. It is a slatted frame made of lacquered aluminium slats each with a width of 5 cm. The intermediate spaces provide ventilation and the aluminium is corrosion-resistant. From size M the slat reinforcement is adapted to the pet’s weight.
It is very important to have pet friendly shapes (without sharp edges) and materials. To reach the maximum safety criteria, our cushions have Velcro straps (photo 9) and the mattresses are completed with protected zips all around to avoid any harm to the pet. We also use safe paint and varnish which is normally applied on children’s furniture.
I hope you have enjoyed my collection and my blog posts which hopefully have given you a deeper insight into elegant interior decoration as well as your pet’s well-being, safety and high level hygiene.
It was my pleasure to share with you my knowledge and lifetime experience these past weeks.
H.S.H. Princess Katalin zu Windischgraetz