Cleaning Up After the Dog: How to Keep Your Home Fresh and Tidy on a Budget

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Cleaning house when you have a pet can be a major task; even if he’s well-trained, there’s a good chance he’ll leave behind hair, saliva, dirt, and the occasional stain. With every season, it seems there’s something new to worry about when it comes to cleaning; mud in the winter and spring, excess hair in the summer, and leaves and other debris in the fall. Keeping your dog and home clean can make things stressful or expensive, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

Rather than focusing on a big cleaning job at the end of every week, make a schedule that you can stick to every day, and think of ways you can prevent messes. You might keep pet wipes near the door so you can clean his feet every time he comes in from outside, for instance, or cut his hair short to reduce shedding. This way, you can break up the chores into manageable tasks and stay on top of your pet’s needs at the same time.

Here are a few tips on how to keep your home clean without breaking the bank.

Create a Plan for Stain Removal

Even house-trained dogs can leave messes behind every now and then. Sometimes, it’s due to illness; others, it’s simply because they can’t hold it. So, it’s a good idea to make a plan to keep your carpets looking nice since getting to a mess before it can stain is important. The good news is that you can use vinegar to get rid of odors and discoloration without harming the fibers of your carpet, and it will help to keep the room smelling fresh as well. If there’s a mess that you can’t get to immediately, soak the area in a mixture of hot water and vinegar and use paper towels to blot up the moisture, then let it dry in a well-ventilated area.

Air Things Out

The air quality in your home can really take a hit in fall and winter, when the house is closed up pretty much all the time. Pet hair, dander, and other allergens can become lodged in the HVAC filter, so it’s important to change it often. Just as important, however, is opening up the windows when the weather is nice. Letting your home get some ventilation will help keep odors and dust from becoming overwhelming, especially if you have the windows open while you clean.

Wash His Toys

Your pet’s toys should be cleaned often if he uses them throughout the week, as they can accumulate saliva, fur, and dirt (if he takes them outside). Use a mixture of hot water and vinegar, or hot water and bleach, to disinfect and clean them about once a week. Rinse well and allow them to dry before giving them back to your pup. If the toys have holes in them that could allow water inside, seal them before washing; otherwise, mold and bacteria could form.

Groom Him Regularly

Keeping your pet well-groomed is an essential part of making sure your home is clean at all times. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on a professional service; brushing and bathing him regularly will go a long way towards keeping excess hair off floors and furniture. You can also make a point to keep a bowl of water or some pet wipes beside the door he uses to go in and out so you can clean his feet every time he comes back in, especially during the rainy season.

Keeping your home tidy with a pet doesn’t have to be expensive or stressful. With the right preparations, you can help your dog stay clean and prevent messes and accidents. Think about what his needs are from season to season and plan accordingly; this will allow you to stay on top of chores without the unnecessary stress.

Guest Blogger Tyler Evans / /

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