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Quilting around Pets

“Hairy Situation”

Have you ever started quilting around pets only to find strands of pet hair all over your fabric?

After recently adopting our new family member from the local shelter, this is the same problem that came to our mind.  We have been avid pet lovers since the beginning and find that it shouldn’t limit anyone from the other things they love.

We’ll give you tips on how to keep a possible hairy situation in check, before it’s overwhelming. 

There is also a list of tools that every quilter, that owns a pet, should have on hand.  This is particularly helpful for when you want to quilt, but are unsure of how to make your quilt user friendly for others.


To start taming the beast of pet fur and dander when your quilting around pets, we begin with a few simple steps.

Step 1

Brush your dog or cat on a regular basis.  It’s best to do this at least weekly.  If your pet is blowing their coat, we find that it is best to brush them daily!

This may seem counterintuitive, however it’s better to get the excess fur out before it’s flowing around in the air.

Step 2

Vacuum!  Vacuum after you have brushed your pet and/or right before the quilting supplies are brought out.  This step is extremely important if you brush you pet inside.  If you are able to get away with grooming your dog or cat outside, then you can get away with only vacuuming before you bring out your quilting supplies.

Step 3

Lint brushes and rollers are your best friend when quilting around pets!  Use them for the little hairs that get on the fabric before quilting, after the quilt is finished, and before the quilt is stored.

Step 4

Wash the quilt once it is completed.  If this quilt is to be for someone that lives outside of your home, it’s best to wash your quilt in hypoallergenic detergent on the permanent press setting.  Then tumble dry it in the dryer on the low heat setting. 

Make sure to empty the lint trap before you dry the quilt.  Once dry, you still might have to use the lint brush again before the quilt is packaged.  It’s worth it, especially if the quilt is for a customer.

Step 5

Wash the pet.  If your pet is an indoor animal then you might only need to wash them once a month or so.  We find that dogs need shampooed more than cats.  This is especially true if they spend a lot of time outside taking walks and such. 

Outdoor animals can be bathed as often as you find it necessary.  Those pets usually won’t affect your quilting hobby as much. ;)

Here’s a tip for washing animals that aren’t used to it. 

Large animals are best washed out side.  Let them drink from the hose and your hand to get used to the idea. 

Smaller breeds are best being in the shower or tub for their bath.  Hold them in a comforting pose and don’t be afraid to get wet too.  It’s easier to train pets when they are babies, but older animals can be trained with it too. 

Start with sounds of running water.  Then move onto letting them taste the water.  Pet them with the water, before you dive right into the rest of the washing.  It will be easier on you and your pet.

Step 6

Dry.  Most pets love when you wrap them in a towel to dry and keep them warm.  Others will be just fine to run around. 

Step 7

Once your pet is dry from their bath, now is the perfect time to brush them again to remove any hairs that loosened.

It is good practice to follow this advice in all stages of your pet’s life.  It’s a good habit for your animal to get used to and great for your quilting hobby.  These tips make quilting around pets a breeze. 


These steps are ones that all breeders know, love, and practice.  Most pet lovers usually know most of these steps, but several forget to practice them. 

We've learned that practicing the different stages when having a furry loved one is essential.  They really enjoy it and will thank you with even more cuddling.  Our quilts love it because they last longer and don’t smell or irritate the skin.

Special Note:  Our home has family members, such as myself, that are mildly to moderately allergic to pets.  Using these steps make having a pet more enjoyable.

List of Essentials

This list particularly helpful for when you want to start quilting around pets, but are unsure of how to make your quilt user friendly for others. 

Some people are more sensitive to pet dander and hair than others.  The same is true depending on the various breeds of animals.  This list is to help with the possibility that whoever receives your quilt will accept it.

Lint brush or roller in two sizes – One for whole quilts and one for quilting blocks.  It’s best to get reusable lint rollers.  We find them the most helpful and economical.

FURminator – This tool that works awesomely to get all of the loose hair and groom the undercoat.  Best of all it reduces shedding by 90%!

Shed Monster – The perfect tool for tangles and knots.  Long hair cats and dogs sometimes get masses of fur that need help to be removed.  This tool does just that without hurting your pet!  It can be used in place of the FURminator as it also reduces shedding by 90%.  This is also available at Walmart.

Grooming rake – This is for the undercoat of the pet in question.  It’s best to use this before any other brush if not using the FURminator or Shed Monster.

Pin or Slicker brush - This tool is an excellent finishing brush.  It usually gets the last little hairs that were missed in the previous steps. 

Wrap Up

Quilting around pets can still be enjoyable.  Don’t give up your hobby just because there is some fur about.  Use these steps to help keep things clean and comfortable.  Everyone involved will thank you.

Until next time.

Happy quilting,

Color Block Quilts

› Quilting around Pets
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