If you own a dog, you’ve probably gained a fairly keen understanding of the label “man’s best friend”. These humble (or not so humble) animals provide us with hours of laughter, a unique, unwavering companionship, and if you’ve had yours long enough you probably understand their personality as thoroughly as a blood relative. Of course, owning one of these beautiful animals comes with an unfortunate flipside. Whether you’ve had your pooch for months or decades, you probably know how messy they can be. Here are some pointers you can use to keep a clean house with dogs.
Cleaning dog hair
The first thing to do, which you may have been nagging yourself about already, is to become more self-disciplined when it comes to cleaning up your dog’s hair. This is one of the most consistent problems you’ll face with owning a dog, covering your clothes, furniture and floors. One simple solution is to lay a few towels on all of your dog’s favourite places to relax, then pick them up and shake them outside whenever they look like they need it. Whatever towels you use, make sure you wash them periodically. Grooming your pet on a more regular basis will also help with the hair problem. When you notice a build-up of your dog’s hair on your carpet, do a round with the vacuum turned to high suction. For tiles or hard wood floors, an electrostatic mop will be a better option, as they don’t have the vacuum’s habit of blowing hair haphazardly from place to place. A tape roller should be sufficient for any that clings to your clothing. Use the vacuum, with an upholstery attachment if possible, on any furniture.
Clean their paws
Another way of keeping your house clean and relatively dog-friendly is to get into a habit of cleaning mud from their paws after a walk. Keep a flannel, and a small container full of water which you can keep near the front door. Seeing this should serve to remind you to dip your dog’s paws into it and wash away any dirt they would have brought into the house. You’ll be amazed at how much more time you have when you don’t have to spend it cleaning individual paw prints. You should also try to get into the habit of acting quickly when your little buddy has an accident. A dog’s urine, if left soaking into a carpet for long enough, can alter the dye irreparably, so the sooner you start cleaning the better. If you’re unfortunate enough to be left with dry, solid residue, chip it away using a fairly dull knife. Dab at the stain with a white cleaning cloth, or another colour which will contrast the liquid. When it stops showing up on the cloth, apply a solution of dishwashing liquid and tepid water, leave it a few minutes to soak in, then dab with a fresh, dry towel.
Choose pet-friendly upholstery
If you happen to be getting any furniture re-upholstered, a choice in material can really help your pet problems and cut down on the time you spend cleaning. Semi-aniline leathers are a great choice. Although a little pricy, this material will resist tears and bites, doesn’t gather too much hair, and is extremely easy to clean. Semi-aniline is treated for durability, and any scratches your dog does manage will barely show up because the leather is dyed all the way through. If you’re not crazy about leather furniture, a good fabric alternative is microfiber. Be careful when you’re browsing for a nice design though, avoiding materials with a thin, loose feel and keeping an eye out for features such as “tight weave” or “high grade”.