We All Love Our Pets
Whether we have a dog that’s our best mate, a cat that likes to snuggle, or a bird that lightens every mood with its song… they can honestly be the best thing in our lives and our homes. But, on the other hand, they can also be one of the worst – particularly when it comes to the quality of your indoor air!
The Bad News
The bad news about pets: that best mate probably rolls around on the carpets, and if it’s a puppy it might even be weeing or pooing on your floors. That snuggler licks itself and coughs up the hairballs, spreads itself out across the couch and rarely goes outside. And that beautiful song leads to the smell of musty feathers and bird poo. Snakes, fish, hamsters, mice – all of these have one thing in common – they all poo, and therefore, they all stink! And no matter how much you have your pets outside the home, if they are EVER inside the home, the smell can linger. And if they actually live inside the home, the smell can get overwhelming.
The Good News
The good news is there are ways you can help to combat the stench. And here they are:
Open the windows and doors to help the fresh air come in and flush out any smells.
Vacuum often. There might be hair, traces of wee or poo stuck in your carpets, saliva – anything really, lying around in the floorboards, rugs, mats and particularly in your furniture! So make sure you get that vacuum cleaner out at least once a week and give the entire house a good once-over, with particular focus on the areas where they spend the most time.
Use an enzyme cleaner if you are puppy training, or your pet has an accident in the house (maybe you’ve left them locked up for the day and they have no other choice). If you spray the affected area with an enzyme cleaner, it will help to break down the particles of the grossness and you can soak it up and blot it clean.
Clean is Green
Use some of your dish detergent to wash your couch. Make sure the water is warm and not too bubbly with detergent. Spend a little bit of time wiping down the part of the couch where your pet likes to sit the most, but just make sure your cloth is only damp – and not wet! If your couch is leather, mix some vinegar with water and again, use a damp cloth to wipe it down.
Clean the carpets, professionally and yourself. Get your carpets cleaned by a professional at least once or twice a year. And in between professional cleans, sprinkle some powder around the room and let it sit for a while, then get the vacuum cleaner out. It helps to remove the dirt and stink, so your carpets will have a fresh powdery smell (just like a baby’s bottom!).
If you have a bird, mouse, hamster, chicken – or anything else that lives in a cage, make sure you clean it out regularly. Don’t let it fester or it might attract more than bad smells (such as mould or bugs). And of course if you own a cat, make sure their litter tray is kept clean! Empty the entire thing out and scrub it with soap and water.
Make A Treat Out Of It
You know that feeling when you get on your nice fresh linen in bed and you simply go “ahhhhh” like it’s the most amazing feeling in the world. It is, isn’t it. It’s the same for your pet. After a while, their bed can get super dirty – and stinky – so put it in the washing machine with a little bit of softener, and your pet will feel on top of the world.
And while you’re there, put your own linen in there and head to bed with fresh sheets! Even if your pet doesn’t go into your room when you’re home, can you be 100% sure they don’t make themselves cosy when you’re out for the day?
Finally, treat your pet! If they love to have a bath, you’re onto a winner so give them a lovely warm, bubble bath and a good wash. This will help to ensure they remain clean and fresh. If they’re anything like my dog, they will get so excited afterwards that they’ll run around and jump on everything again – so at least they are clean doing so! And if you can, get a local pet groomer around to your home, or go and visit one. This is an extra special treat for your pet and is something you could do every few weeks. They might even need a haircut (only if they are dogs, of course!) and this will prevent extra hair on the couch, and extra smell in the home.
So, there you have it. Regardless of what your pet is, you need to look after it. And by looking after your pet, you’re looking after yourself and the quality of your indoor air!