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Owning a pet can be so rewarding. As a part of the family, they offer up so much love and also provide hours of entertainment. However, there’s a downside to our furry friends – their presence in the home can leave a lingering odor that may be hard to combat, and they tend to leave fur and dirt wherever they go. Looking for ideas to help combat this? Here are a few tips and tricks to minimize those pet odors and also keep everyone happy and healthy.
While this may seem obvious, there are some additional chores that if added to your cleaning regime, will decrease the pet odors in your home. Cleaning the floors, whether it be vacuuming the carpets, sweeping the hardwoods and tile, or mopping, should be done on a regular basis. Understandably, it may not be realistic with your busy schedule and if that’s the case, at least try to clean the high traffic areas. If your pets spend most of their time sleeping on the living room floor, try to vacuum or sweep that area every week. Pet beds and pillows also are culprits for holding in odor, so try to launder them on a weekly basis. Pet bowls should be washed often, and walls and bases of furniture should be wiped down weekly. If possible, try to shampoo your carpets and furniture cushions every two months.
Let in Fresh Air
The best way to alleviate that pet smell is to let in fresh air and promote it to circulate throughout the house. Open windows and doors on opposite sides of the home to increase the cross breeze, or place a fan in front of the window to increase the airflow. You may also want to dry your pet beds outside in the fresh air to keep that wet dog smell out of the house.
Spray air fresheners aren’t the answer with pet odors, so opt for odor absorbers instead. Odor absorbers are especially important if you have cats who use a litter box. Be sure to look for a cat litter that is odor absorbent, which will cut down on the smell of ammonia immensely. It’s also important to have a separate cat box for each cat in the home, and to remove waste daily and wash them out weekly. Vinegar also acts as an odor absorber. Simply leave a cup of vinegar on the counter or a table top and it will cut down the odor in no time.
Purify the Air
Purchasing a high quality air purifier with carbon filters not only eliminates odors, it also cuts down on the amount of airborne bacteria, mold, pet dander, dust mites, and pollen you would otherwise be inhaling. The air filters in your HVAC unit serve the same purpose, so be sure those are being changed out on a regular basis as well with a high quality filter.
The Baking Soda Trick
How many of you grew up with an open box of baking soda in your refrigerator? Your parents knew what they were doing. Baking soda naturally absorbs unpleasant odors and is safe for your pets. All you have to do is simply sprinkle the baking soda on your carpets, furniture, and bedding and let it sit overnight and vacuum it up the following day.
Bathe Your Pets
While it may seem that your cats and dogs are doing a fine job of bathing themselves, it’s important that you also set a bathing schedule for them. Pet allergies and ailments typically reveal themselves through their skin, usually emitting an odor. It’s important to consult with your veterinarian to determine a bathing schedule and type of shampoo to use, as not washing enough can cause allergies and skin issues, and washing too frequently can cause issues with dryness of the skin as well as other conditions. Don’t forget to stock up on treats – the potential reward can make bath time much easier.
Owning a pet doesn’t mean your home has to smell like it. With some small changes to your routine, odors can be eliminated and measures can be put into place so that they don’t return.