Your gundogs may sleep outside in a kennel. But if they're 'inside' dogs, maybe they deserve a bit of luxury? Giles Kime of Country Life investigages ...
Canine indulgence is nothing new (in the 1920s, the Nawab of Junagadh is rumoured to have laid on lavish nuptials for his two favourite hounds), but, increasingly, it’s having an impact on the way we live. One of these is the return of the throw, although these have nothing to do with rendering a room more cosy and everything to do with offering a surreptitious way to protect upholstery from moulting fur, mud and nail damage.
A dog basket by the boiler?
Another is the evolution of the dog basket – a decade ago, it was just that, a wicker basket that jostled for position between the central-heating boiler and assorted pairs of muddy boots. However, now that many dogs have a licence to roam – and sleep – pretty much where they please, the pressure is on to create stylish dog beds and bedding that look at home in the company of furniture designed for humans.
One of the best sources of dog furniture sympathetic to smart interiors was set up by sisters Christine and Jenny Chau (0161–848 8702; www.charleychau.com), owners of four exquisite Italian greyhounds that feature in the company’s imagery. The emphasis is more on aesthetics than the pampering of pooches and the range includes everything from a discreet day bed (choose from a combination of tangerine and claret or teal and fuchsia) to a more stately rattan design that’s presumably for those impoverished canine souls that don’t share their owners’ beds. The design that scores highest for indulgence is the Snuggle bed, which ingeniously combines a fleece-covered cushion with a built-in duvet.
Another retailer that upholds the right of dogs to snooze in style is OKA (01235 433930; www.oka.com), but the company doesn’t just stop at dog beds and fake-fur throws: its Crackle Dash pet bowl is as chic as the rest of its range. The days of the outdoor kennel seem a dim and distant memory.
8 STYLISH DOG BEDS
Dog bed in greyfriars wool tartan, £995 with 20% of each UK sale donated to the Grassmarket Community Project and RAFT, from Savoir Beds