We love our pets, but we don’t love their mess. However, Melissa Maker to the rescue! The star of the YouTube’s “Clean My Space” offers up her easy solutions on how to clean the most common (and stubborn) pet messes in your home.
Cleaning pet hair
This may sound simple—but brushing your pets hair will allow you to collect the fallout and toss it before it gets everywhere. If you are brushing inside, put your pet on a plush towel and keep a vacuum and plastic bag nearby so you can clean up the fallen hair. The FURminator brush is the most effective job – available for cats and dogs.
Another tip to reducing pet hair around your home is to wet your hands after you have finished brushing and run them through your little fur ball to catch any of the leftover hair.
Cleaning dirty paws
What’s cuter than booties for your dogs—nothing! But they aren’t just cute, they are functional too. Just like our own shoes, booties collect dirt and prevent that dirt from being tracked into the house.
If you are not the pet-shoe-wearing type, you should at the very least be wiping your pets paws as soon as they get inside—think about what they’re walking over, digging up and then bringing into your house. And there are always these machine-washable mats that you can use in your home instead.
It’s also great to have a paw-washing station. Keep a basket filled with rags or a large microfiber towel near the door. It will not only reduce the amount of dirt tracked in the house, but also 50 per cent of paw licking and chewing can eliminated by washing paws.
Cleaning pet accessories
Our pets get into everything—beds, blankets, toys and the list goes on. These are soft surfaces that are most comfortable for our pets, but they also trap the most odour. Needless to say, they can get pretty gross. Launder these items on the hottest possible setting and if you have a sanitary or steam cycle in your washing machine, that’s even better.
Make sure water fountains and bowls and food bowls are cleaned, too. This should be done every day.
For pet toys, place in a delicates bag and toss in the washing machine or on the top rack of the dishwasher for plastic/silicone toys.
Some pet beds even come with special fabrics that contain microbes which eat up odour-causing bacteria, so keep that in mind.
Cleaning litter boxes
This is very simple— keep your litter box clean! The litter box is the ultimate odour-causing culprit in a cat home. When it comes to picking a litter, it’s important to find one with odour-eliminating technology and there are so many options out there! Compressed newspaper, wheat-based or tofu-based litters do remarkable jobs at reducing odours in the home.
You can also consider a disposable litter box like this one. These are great because litter boxes are…well… gross. Disposable litter boxes can be used for about a month and then tossed. They are biodegradable, so they will break down in the landfill once you toss them and it will reduce the unpleasant scents in your home!
And then there’s the issue of stray litter that makes its way onto the floor. There are mats that are specifically designed to trap littler, but if you’re a DIY’er, you can make your own with a piece of cardboard and a fork. Just run fork lines from top to bottom to creates grooves that will trap litter. Cats love cardboard too.
Cleaning slobber & drool
Sticky drool is the hardest parts of pet ownership—it’s nearly impossible to remove the stickiness or scent of your pet’s slobber.
To remove fresh or old slobber from windows, mix a solution of equal parts water and vinegar and apply with a microfiber cloth. Wipe well and buff dry! Rubbing alcohol is a also great in breaking down tough spots of pet drool buildup. You can also use rubbing alcohol on upholstery with a cloth to remove any stains or spots.
For slobbery spots on the wall, using an eraser sponge or a sprinkle of baking soda on a damp regular sponge will help wipe messes away. You can also take out a trusty baby wipe to get slobber stains off upholstery.
Eliminating pet odours
There are a few ways to keep the air “clean” in your home. First, understand that the soft surfaces in your home like carpets and upholstery are SPONGES for pet dander and hair and these can trap dander and dirt from pets leading to odors.
When it comes to upholstery—choose wisely. Soft and fluffy material makes it hard to get rid of pet hair. Stiff or leather material is much easier to clean.
Vacuuming frequently is key for keeping your home smelling fresh, and looking for a vacuum with a hepa filter is your best bet as it will be able to handle dander and allergens. Also, your furnace filter, if clogged, can prevent good air flow throughout your home so it is important to change it at the beginning of a new season, or 4 times per year.
If you have carpets or high pile rugs, you can use this DIY carpet neutralizer, which is great for people with or without pets:
- Mix one cup of baking soda with 20 drops of your favourite essential oil
- Sprinkle on carpet using a parmesan shaker or flour sifter.
- Let sit for 30 minutes and then vacuum
How to make a DIY air neutralizer
There are so many ways to make your home smell great—even with pets around. Candles, essential oils, etc. but it’s always important to check with your vet to see if it’s safe for your pet.
A great way to neutralize the air is to leave a bowl of vinegar out. Leaving out ground coffee is also great option. Something as simple as cutting a lemon and leaving it exposed will work wonders.
- Squeeze a lemon into a bowl
- Add one cup of water
- Cut rind into small pieces and add to bowl
- Mix, and then add to spray bottle.
- Make on demand as the scent won’t last long. It’s a great quick fix for when people pop over.