Designer doggy decor gets Neale Whitaker’s seal of approval.
THE HUMBLE PET BED HAS UNDERGONE A DESIGNER MAKEOVER
Handsome is a Weimaraner’s default position. I’m biased, of course, as I have two in my life, but they’re among the most genetically blessed of dogs. Yet for all their aristocratic bearing and Instagram posing, mine actually like being dogs. They choose a muddy puddle over a clean water bowl; they chase cats and roll in poo; they beg unapologetically at cafe tables; and chicken sends them into rapture matched only by the oily whiff of tinned sardines.
I was never a fan of dog hotels that indulge owners more than their pets. My boys like to run with the pack at their favourite country homestay, lights out at 4pm. No spa baths, “puppuccinos” or whatever the canine equivalent is of a dirty martini. But where my dogs veer dangerously into pampered-pooch territory is in their choice of bed. Well, look who their father is.
As I write this, Weimaraner Senior is splayed on a daybed that is satisfyingly mid-century in style, with a touch of functional Scandi-luxe. Real hide stretched on a metal frame. Australianmade, the Arvin Grex beds (arvingrex. com) are the concept of designer Ingrid Morgan, who wanted a dog bed that “crossed over into the realm of small furniture”. As the owner of a five-year- old German shorthaired pointer, Morgan wanted something comfortable for him that “I’d choose to have in my personal space”. Makes perfect sense to me. Recent changes to strata laws mean more of us are cohabiting with pets, and open-plan living demands a serious raising of the style bar.
Never slow to spot a trend, Melbournebased style arbiter Piero Gesualdi sells pet beds by Dutch brand Lord Lou at his eclectic Fitzroy emporium Mondopiero (mondopiero.com.au). These are beds worthy of a Milan debut (prices start at $675), the stuff of canine (and feline) dreams. We’re talking absolute dog decor with styles ranging from industrial (Wheely) to Louis XVI (George) and Art Deco (Luigi). Gesualdi won’t identify the “two international celebrities” who have purchased the beds from him, but admits that “pet lovers have no issue with spoiling their much-loved treasures”.
But, before you accuse me of losing the plot, I should add that there’s still one Australian retailer with the most enviable range of stylish, functional and affordable pet beds. That honour falls to Petbarn (petbarn.com.au). It’s my dogs’ favourite store and always will be.
PAMPERED PETS Luxury pet beds from (left) Lord Lou; and (below left) Arvin Grex; (below right) Neale Whitaker’s beloved pooch Ollie slumbers in style on a designer daybed by Arvin Grex.