Pets, like cats and dogs, are wonderful four-pawed additions to our families who bring companionship, joy and emotional support into our lives, but they can also bring unwanted excess hair, dander, messes and odor into our home. In the summertime these messes may be especially noticeable while our pets tend to shed excess hair during warmer months and track in mud and dirty paw prints from outside.
Here are several ideas for keeping those pet messes under control and keeping our pet-friendly homes clean and organized:
Hair and Pawprints Everywhere
Certain breeds of cats and dogs shed excess hair, especially during the warmer months. Increased grooming during this season will help control the hair, which can be done either by taking your pet for professional grooming or using at-home grooming tools such as rubber and metal brushes or grooming gloves. Best to do this outside so that fly away hairs and danders don’t re-land in your home. More frequent vacuuming and cleaning of floors, surfaces and furniture will also be needed to keep pet hair under control. Many pet owners hire an outside cleaning service to come in for a more thorough clean weekly or biweekly and then they do maintenance themselves throughout the week. Having damp wipes, towel or a mat near the door to clean off your pets paws when coming in from the outdoors will also help with those muddy paw prints from tracking dirt all over your hard floors or rugs.
Different pets require different types of food, some wet and some dry. All pets require access to fresh water. Many pets can be excitable messy eaters, with crumbs, dribbles and spills being part of their feeding routine. Keeping your pets’ feeding area clean is important for your pet and your home health. Frequent cleaning of your pets bowls will keep food residue and germs from building up. Placing a waterproof mat under the bowls helps prevent food or water stains on your floors. Dry food is best contained in an airtight plastic or metal bin/canister that not only keeps food fresh, but also prevents spills, tears and messes from the bag, not to mention will keep insects or rodents from finding the food.
Different pets have different needs when it comes to their potty habits. Some say that cats can be trained to use and flush the toilet! Most often cats will learn to use a litter box. Top entry, lidded litter boxes will help keep litter from escaping and using a low-dust or clumping type litter will keep that clay dust from settling on nearby surfaces. Frequent scooping and refreshing the litter supply will best help eliminate any odors. Most dogs are house trained either learn to go outside or use special absorbent mats in a specified area, but potty accidents do happen. When they do, have a spray bottle with diluted vinegar or and pet odor eliminator spray handy with paper towels for quick clean up. Again, using wipes or a mat at the door for reentry into your home keeps wet paws from tracking paw prints across the floor.
Having a pet means having pet stuff. Food supplies, grooming equipment, spray bottles, medications, toys, etc can begin to add clutter to your home It is useful to have all your pet supplies in one area and kept organized. Designating a plastic storage bin or a special cabinet or drawer is one way to keep all pet supplies in a specified area, stored out of sight in a garage, laundry area or storage closet. Be sure to keep pet food, medication and sharp grooming tools out of the reach of young children.
Pets make great family members but don’t always clean up after themselves. Our furry friends may require us to take a few extra steps to ensure our homes stay clean, organized and healthy, but the love, affection, loyalty and companionship that our pets bring to our lives is certainly worth it.