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Cleaning a Pet-Loving Home for the Holidays

By: Dr. Debra Primovic

Read By: Pet Lovers
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Dog hair, cat hair, cat vomit, dog vomit, more hair, and hopefully no other types of "accidents" to clean up. Pets are an important part of our lives and our homes but they do leave lots of hair, dander among other things in our home. We really start to notice it when we want to clean for a holiday party or company. Here are some tips to help you clean your pet-loving home for the holidays.

First – start planning early. It's never too early to start cleaning. This is easy to say and hard to do. But none the less, doing some of the hard grunt work ahead of time can make the last minute stuff a lot easier. For example, don't just vacuum round the furniture, move the furniture. It's amazing what pet toys and "things" you will find. Here are more tips for specific problems.

Pet Hair

Anyone that has a pet knows that it seems to get everywhere. It seems no matter what you wear, it shows up. We did a survey of thousands of pet owners on PetPlace.com to find out their favorite ways to deal with pet hair.

In the house - The number one method our pet lovers use to deal with pet hair in their homes is to vacuum, followed by frequent changing of air filters and cleaning of bedding.

Floors - For pet hair on the floor, it's a problem. Depending on your flooring – brooms, vacuums, or damping mopping can all work. Some of our users thought that the Swifter works really well on tile and hardwood and the Dyson Pet Vac is great on both hardwood and carpet. I have the Dyson Pet Vac and also believe it is a great product for picking up pet hair.

Furniture – Our favorite techniques for getting pet hair off furniture includes rubber gloves, a dry sponge or cloths. Lots of users like rubber gloves to deal with hair on furniture. Rub the glove over the furniture and the hair comes off. Also, a dry sponge can be used on furniture to help ball up hair. For most, the sponge technique is more effective if slightly dampened. A microfiber cloth dry or dampened also removes hair easily from furniture. Another method you can try is using Velcro-type lint brushes that can work on both furniture and clothes. Bissell makes a set of awesome attachments just for cleaning up pet hair, and they fit all major brand vacuum cleaners. This set is called the Bissell Pet Pack Universal Accessory Kit. It works really well and is inexpensive. It will allow you to vacuum contours on furniture, stairs, crevices and more ... and it picks up pet hair easily.

Pet Odors

When most people refer to pet odors, it is often urine that generates the most concern and is discussed in more detail below. The genesis of other pet odors is from hair, dander, drool, and vomit. These odor causing substances can be cleaned by vacuuming or soap/water.

Cleaning up pet vomit can be a little tricky. If on hardwood, you can clean with a routine floor cleaner. If it is on carpet and it is wet, dry it well by blotting with a clean white paper towel. Before using any specific cleaning product, test the color fastness of the carpet by applying the cleaner to a hidden part of the carpet. If the color does not change after 24 hours, it is safe to use. If the carpet cleaning products don't work, you may want to consider steam cleaning.

Urine Odor

This is a terrible dilemma for any dog or cat owner when a pet urinates inappropriately in the house. This is a common problem when cats urinate outside of the litter box and especially those with multi-cat household where more than one cat may be involved. It is important to address this problem of cat urine odor in two ways. First, recognize the behavioral problem and try to determine the source of the problem. Secondly, address how best to remove the cat urine odor. For the first problem, we have a really good article on PetPlace.com about reasons why your cat may not be using the litter box. I recommend that you read this carefully as you work concurrently on how best to remove the cat urine odor click here.

As far as how to remove cat urine odor, figure out where your cat is "going". Is it one spot or multiple spots? If the area is wet – sop up as much of the liquid as possible with plain paper towels. Once it is as "dry" as it can get, use a proprietary product that enzymatically breaks down the urine odor molecule. Use a good quality product and DON'T SKIMP. Use as directed. The products often recommend saturating the area in a way that may seem "extreme". Do it. The cat urine will often go down to the pad or baseboard in carpets and you need for the product being used to remove cat urine odor to do the same. Remember, this is not a time to skimp. Use the products as directed. Products available include: Zero Odor, Urine-off, Nature's Miracle, SeaYu Petrotech Odor Eliminator, Anti Icky Poo (AIP), Odorban, Odornil, and Nilodor. My favorite product is Zero Odor. Zero Odor can eliminate those nasty odors for good

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