Americans love dogs. We love them so much that we spend billions of dollars on them each year. But as much as we may love their floppy ears and their big, silly eyes, there’s one thing most pet lovers could do without — the mess. Dogs aren’t keen on our rules of cleanliness and order. Plus, some things are pretty much out of their control (read: all the shedding). The truth is, if you want your home to be squeaky clean, you have to roll up your sleeves and do some work. These tips and tricks can help make it easier for you.
Prevent Shedding with Regular Grooming
Dogs have a lot of hair, and some of it has to fall out to make room for new growth. If you want that hair to fall out somewhere other than all over your couch, your best bet is to remove it yourself with regular grooming. Plus, sitting down with your dog once a week to give him what feels like a massage is a lovely bonding experience. If your dog’s coat is long, invest in a dog shedding brush that reaches the undercoat to remove up to 90 percent of shed hair. No matter how much brushing you do, some hair will end up on your floors and furniture. A handheld vacuum can be perfect for reaching narrow and tight spaces.
Beyond your weekly brushing, it’s a good idea to take your dog to be professionally groomed every four to six weeks. A professional groomer can clean and trim your dog’s coat so it’s easier for you to manage in between appointments. Groomers also do a lot of necessary things for your dog’s hygiene that you may not want to do yourself. Most dog parents prefer outsourcing those necessary tasks like pesky nail trims.
Consider Updating Your Home’s Interior
Sometimes, the secret to a cleaner home requires a bit of an investment. If your current furniture seems to be made of hair magnets, it may be worth it to get rid of the old stuff and update with pieces that are made with materials that don’t attract fur. Leather is a good option, but you can also try some synthetic fibers in shades similar to your dog’s coat to hide any shedding that does happen. Also, consider putting down some rugs or runners in large areas of the house to protect the floors underneath.
Finally, you can discourage shedding on your furniture by giving you pup his own place to relax and unwind. Put a cozy dog bed in the living room where Fido can have his own space while still being with his family. When looking for options, find a dog bed that is just bigger than his actual size so your dog is comforted when he lays on it.
Cleaning Hacks for Dog Lovers
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, but when you have a dog, there’s no preventing some messes. If you find your beloved pup has left your house a wreck, use the following hacks to make clean-up easier.
- Use a pumice stone to bring up hair embedded deep into fibers.
- Run a wet rubber glove over the fabric to remove pet hair from furniture.
- To remove odors from rugs and runners, sprinkle baking soda on them before vacuuming.
- Use a combination of vinegar and baking soda to remove stains from carpets.
- Rainy days mean muddy paws. If there is mud on carpets or fabrics, let it dry so the extra dirt cakes off. Then, you can treat the stain with dish soap to cut through the dirt. Finally, use the vinegar and baking soda trick listed above to completely remove any residual staining.
We love our dogs, just not the messes they bring inside. The best thing you can do as a dog owner is make sure your pup is regularly brushed and groomed so all that dead hair ends up in the garbage and not in your carpets. You can also create a cleaner looking home by removing items that attract fur and replacing them with furniture that either repels or hides it. When your dog does make an inevitable mess, you can use common household items to clean. They are cheap, convenient, and nontoxic for your pup.
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