We love our furry friends, but they can do some serious damage when it comes to our homes. Whether you’re a first-time pet owner, or you’ve got your own litter, have no fear, we’ve compiled the ten must-know tips to keep your pet-friendly home looking and feeling sparkling clean.
1. Groom Regularly
If Fido looks like he’s just starred in one of those muddy truck commercials, it’s time to set up a pet grooming routine. It may seem obvious, but dirt removed through grooming is dirt not lying around the house. While you shouldn’t use pet shampoo too often, a quick wash down with plain water can make a world of difference. Keep damp dogs confined to one area, preferably with an easy to clean floor like your laundry room or kitchen. Better yet, thoroughly dry them afterwards to avoid any stinky, wet dog smell. Depending on the breed they may also require trimming or de-shedding; use a professional dog groomer for a thorough job.
2. Use an Automatic Vacuum
They’re an investment, but so is your dog. Even if they’re a breed that doesn’t shed, you’ll still need to vacuum A LOT. Besides, dog hair, dirt, leaves and other debris comes into the house on their paws and their fur, as they love to roll around in the yard. By the time you are done vacuuming the house, it’s time to do it again. Consider investing in a robot vacuum to make your life a little easier. It can run when you’re not home of while you’re asleep. Some models can even be programmed to run on a set schedule.
3. Buy a Sensible Dog Bed
We all want our canine friends to have the most comfy and stylish of beds for them to rest their furry heads on each night, however, don’t be swayed by over-the-top designs and extra fluffy lining – they will be a nightmare to clean. Instead go for a water resistant, easy to wipe down option. Give it a quick wipe down once a week and leave it out to air in the sun whenever possible.
4. Set up a Cleaning Station
Just like us humans, if your pets go outside, they need to clean off before running all over the house. The best way to make sure this happens is to set up an easily accessible cleaning station and make a quick pit stop after walks and outside playtime. If you have a laundry room, set up your dog cleaning station there. But if not, simply tweak your entryway. We’re talking a heavy-duty doormat, easily accessible dog towels and wipes and a water spray bottle to clean muddy paws. Maybe a couple of treats, too.
5. React Quickly to Accidents
Regardless of if you have a new puppy or a perfectly housebroken pooch, accidents happen, especially if they eat something they shouldn’t have. Keep a cleaner on hand that is designed to tackle pet odors and stains. Use it on stains as soon as you see one, following package directions, so your chance for removal is higher. Try a powerful cleaner like BUBBAS Super Strength Cleaner for both indoor and outdoor messes. For an even deeper clean, try a handheld steam mop.
6. Upgrade Your Sofa
Is your cuddle buddy ruining your couch? It might be time to upgrade your current sofa. The wrong material can act like a hair magnet, hold undesirable odors and show off the slightest stain. While searching for your new sofa, look for leather or tightly woven materials, ideally in a similar shade to your pets. If a new sofa isn’t in the cards, add a pet friendly throw which can be tossed in the wash when needed.
7. Clean Their Things
If your dog has a smelly bed and stinky toys laying around, chances are your house doesn’t smell so great either. Pet beds, blankets, and even toys store odor and all need to be cleaned regularly. Check if they are machine washable, otherwise you can wash by hand in the sink. Save this chore for a sunny day and allow them to dry outside where the sun will help kill bad odors.
8. Contain the Mess
One spot that is nearly always a mess in a pet lover’s home is around the food bowls. Between leftover food and dribbled water, it can get dirty pretty quickly. Placing a rimmed tray under the food dishes is a good way to catch some of the mess and allows for easy clean-up.
9. Invest in Durable Materials
Hear us out…YES, we all want the best deal when it comes to furniture and interiors, but if you have dogs, finding the perfect pieces to fill your home may come at a higher cost. To avoid clawed-up carpet and a dirty couch, opt for decor made of durable, sturdy materials. Indoor/outdoor rugs have a low pile that’s not easily torn and can be hosed down outside should any messes occur. Whenever possible, use stain-resistant fabrics in high traffic areas like the living room. They’ll be easier to clean and keep your home looking fresh.
10. Air Out Your House
No matter how clean your house may be, persistent pet odor can put a major damper on the overall energy and vibe of your space. Now that it’s nearly spring, try opening your windows to let some fresh air in. If you live in part of the country that’s currently experiencing a major chill, even a 5-10-minute blast of fresh air will work wonders at deodorizing.
It’s okay to love (and spoil) your pets and still maintain a beautiful home. Creating a happy home for your four-legged friend is a lot more important than being stressed over muddy paws and shedding, but you can use these steps to make things a bit easier.