Four Rug Styles That Will Hold Up With Big Dogs

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The first time we went to go purchase a real rug I did major amounts of research on what type would hold up the best with large dogs (German Shepherds to be exact). Honestly back then, a "real rug" meant I was spending like a hundred bucks at Ikea, and that was a lot when you had four dogs (two of which we bred to make puppies that were cared for in this home). Four dogs that at any moment could ruin my Ikea rug; in that case I could have just thrown the $100 out the window.

So over the years we have tried a few different types of  in our small bungalow, and a lot of doggies have snuggled in on them. If you're looking for something durable and cost effective, look no further, here's what we've found.

Jute Rugs

I was surprised as I started to write this post, some folks do not think jute is a durable option for pets, but we have found it to be our favorite option. Heck, that first Ikea rug was jute, and has made a cameo in almost every room of our house at some point or another.

jute rugs with dogs

  • Jute is heavy so you don't get a lot of sliding around and rarely will it flip up and become a tripping hazard.
  • Because the fibers are all natural you get varying shades, this helps with covering up and wear and tear over the years.
  • I would say it even covers up some crushed up cereal from toddlers, but with these dogs, nothing even hits the ground!

I know what your thinking " come on lady we all know why I'm reading this... get to the main point!" The poop and pee and occasional doggie puke. Yep we've all had them do it. And yes, jute handles it well with a lot of dabbing to clean up. We do still have a small ring on the original rug where a puke stain would never go completely away, but I doubt anyone has ever noticed it but me.


  • Spot clean by dabbing the area, don't rub in.
  • You don't want to wash down a jute rug because the fibers can get brittle with how long it takes to dry.
  •  You can set a jute rug out and let the sun naturally bleach and deodorize the rug. (you really should once a year, dogs can get weird about smells)


Jute rugs with dogs

  1. World Market Jute// 9x12 $149
  2. Safavieh Hand Woven Natural Jute Area Rug  //5x8 $92 // 8x10 $222 // 9x12 $297
  3. Safavieh Natural Jute Area Rug// 5x8 $97 // 8x10 $201

Flatweave Wool Rugs

After we purchased the jute rug, we also got a flat woven wool rug for the living room, and it has withstood the whole family. Folks will normally tell you to get a rug with a small pattern and almost no white to cover up any staining. But.. I fell in love with this pattern and so we took a chance two years ago and haven't looked back. It needs regular vacuuming about every other day, but that could just be because of the ratio of beings-to-square-footage in our home.

wool rugs with dogs

  • The flat weave helps to keep debris on the surface of the rug, instead of falling inside of a plush high pile rug.
  • No need to worry about muddy paw prints, let them dry, and vacuum up. We use the beater brush and it has don't the job without fail. (I know they say not too still looks great)
  • Any small stains on the white portion of the rug have come up with a little baking soda and vinegar solution (Use a tooth brush to gently work in).

wool rugs with dogs

  1. Genesis wool rug // 4 x 5' 6"  $465
  2. Block Printed Cotton Flat Weave // 8' 6" x 11' 6" $425
  3. Paddle Rug // 5 x 8 $169

Blanket Rugs

Whats better than throwing a heavy blanket in the wash (on cold and air dry) when one of your beloved dogs sheds all over it? We have a vintage Mexican blanket that has been used in front of our bed for years.

  • They will slide around even with a mat if you don't anchor under furniture
  • Work wonderfully layered over other rugs
  • Soft on the feet due to being made generally from cotton or wool
  • Good for smaller areas that don't need a big heavy rug

Blanket rugs with dogs

  1. Diamond Patterned Blue Jeans Rug // 47" x 71"  $148
  2. Navy & White Stripe Scandinavian Rug // 55" x 78"  $122
  3. Green & White Stripe Scandinavian Rug // 55" x 78" $122

Cow-hide or Leather Rugs

When I started finding examples of cow-hide rugs I ran into a few leather-woven options...and thought leather? Maybe I missed that this was an option, but it's like I hit the jackpot! If we didn't already get a bigger jute rug for our living room, I would be ordering the pretty blue and white striped leather rug below!

I got a small cow-hide rug to layer in Haverly's nursery two years ago, she loves it, the dogs really love it, and since it hasn't had any doggie mistakes happen on it (Knock, Knock) I love it.

cow hide rugs with dogs


  • Rest assured, your dogs will be totally floored by the smells coming from a cowhide. Frankly it scared the crap out of me. I figured I would find the thing half eaten one day and spend the rest of the week waiting for the return of the other half...if you know what I mean. As you see its still whole, and looking pretty good!
  • Stains, what stains? I suppose hair is stain resistant... naturally animals fur is water resistant so even the white has never had any issues. We have spilled wine and milk and just blotted it up with no issues.

If your not into actually having a cowhide in your home, the patterned hides are a beautiful option. Just look at that geometric hide, swoon worthy.


cow hide rugs with dogs

  1.  Cowhide Rug Caramel // $245
  2. Handmade Cowhide Geometric Leather  // 8 x 10 $282 // 9 x 12 $685
  3. Matador Leather Chindi Handmade Rug // 9 x 12 $308

We did actually order one of the rugs listed here for the living room. Another jute for our house this time around! We really like the natural look but can't wait for some of the other projects coming up on the blog to break up the brown that is currently happening.


jute rug with dogs

I spy a sneak peek on the new slider Mitch mounted for our office last week! It's amazing to have a real door to close while working. Of course it doesn't stay closed long...our little strawberry blonde loves to figure out how things work. Just today she was inspecting the hardware mounted on the floor to help the door slide efficiently. We have a thinker on our hands.

Anybody else have good luck with other styles of rug's that are dog or pet friendly? I'd love to try something else in the future.