Above: Our pets don’t have to compromise the cleanliness and health of our homes. Photos courtesy of Pixabay

dog on table homesPets can bring us daily happiness and memories, but they also provide us with dust, germs and pests that can easily take over our homes. To make sure that you and your pet live your best, there are some simple steps to keeping your home clean and safe.

  • For cats and dogs, regularly brush their fur and give them a bath. This will decrease the amount of animal hair and pet dander in your home. Talk to your vet about how often you should bathe your pet — different breeds have different needs!
  • Clean hard surface floors regularly with a damp mop and microfiber cloth. Avoid dry mopping because this will increase the amount of pet dander and hair that is spread throughout the house. For rugs and carpets, use a HEPA vacuum. If that doesn’t fit your budget, use a vacuum with a HEPA air filter and vacuum often.
  • Clean up accidents immediately. Pets, especially dogs, may repeatedly return to the same location inside the home to urinate, creating some unpleasant smells for those around. Blot rugs and carpets with towels to soak up the liquid and then completely dry with a fan. Sprinkling baking soda on the surface will also decrease the smell.
  • Pets, along with shoes and clothing, can track dust and contaminants in from the outdoors on their paws and fur. Not surprisingly, the greatest concentration of household dust is found in carpeting near the entryway. Place doormats by exterior doors so paws (and shoes) are not as dirty after entry.
  • Change air filters and dryer lint traps regularly for a well-ventilated home. Then you’ll circulate clean, fresh air which promotes good respiratory health. You’ll be amazed how much fur they’ll collect!
  • Keep pets out of your backyard garden. Their fur and saliva contain bacteria that can be easily spread to the produce that we eat.
  • Store household cleaning and laundry products in locked cabinets or on high shelves, out of the reach of pets.
  • To decrease pests like roaches and ants, eliminate sources of food and water by putting pet food in sealed containers.

cat on chair homesSimple cleaning techniques will go a long way when caring for your pet and home. For more tips and tricks, contact UGA Extension Fulton County at 404-762-4077.