Have you noticed a whiff or two of dog smell in your home? Or maybe you’ve noticed that your friends aren’t visiting as much since ol’ Fido moved in?
I get it, I really do. We love our pets so much that sometimes we’re willing to turn a blind eye – *ahem – nose* – to some of their less desirable qualities.
And while you might love the smell of Fido’s Frito feet (I’m totally guilty of this), your visitors and landlord might not approve of your apartment’s new and not-so-improved odor.
Fortunately, just because you have a dog doesn’t mean your house has to reek like the inside of a kennel!
There are tons of neat tips and tricks to remove stinky pet smells and keep your house smelling fresh. And it’s not just about dumping a bottle of Febreze into the air, although I’ve been there and done that too!
While it’s nice to have a clean-smelling home, this step is even more important if you rent. Removing lingering odors from an apartment can take weeks or sometimes even require a full repaint or carpet replacement. And I can guarantee you that neither of these are quick or cheap to do. Even renting an ionizer for a couple of days will have you out a couple hundred bucks from your pocket or security deposit.
And if you’ve spent more than a month or two in your rental, you’re almost certainly leaving your smell footprint behind whether you’ve gone nose-blind to it or not. So don’t leave your de-stinkathon until the day before you move, because these smells can be STICKY!
So let’s not waste any more time and get down to business with the top tricks for removing pet odors from your home.
1) Air purifiers
Air purifiers are a great way to keep the fire around your home feeling fresh and free from foul smells and the invisible airborne particles that come hand in hand with your pooch. You can even use these appliances with attached air fresheners if you want! Just be sure to stay on top of cleaning and changing the filters, or else it could be an exercise in futility. Also good to know is if you don’t have an air purifier already and are on a budget, be sure to factor in the cost of filter replacements when shopping around.
2) Baking Soda
Baking soda is useful for many things but is an excellent absorbent of odors. Leave an open box of baking soda in areas that attract smells such as your dogs treat cupboard or on a shelf near where you hang his lead and collar. You can also sprinkle it on carpets, sofas and other surfaces to effectively remove yucky smells. Just leave it on overnight and vacuum up the following day. Its a cheap and effective way to start banishing those doggy smells!
3) Wash Day
Pick a day each week as a doggy wash day where you collect up all his smelly little toys, blankets, beds and give them a good washing. It sounds simple and it is! Just stick to it and your house will quickly start smelling fresher.
Tip: Make sure any fabric toys and blankets are completely dry before putting them back in circulation as this will prevent any unpleasant, damp smells from occurring. This is another reason to keep your dog off the furniture — it’s much tougher to get rid of those smells if they’re embedded deep in your sofa.
You can also use this day to wash any other linens or fabrics that have come into contact with your beloved pup. Major smell culprits can be rugs or cushions your dog sits on regularly. If you allow your dog on the bed with you then your bedding should be changed often for smell and hygiene purposes.
4) Dog collars
Dog collars can get super smelly as they wear them an awful lot. Yes you can wash some of them but maybe it’d be best to chuck it out and get a nice new one made from non- odor absorbing materials. Not only will Fido appreciate the fancy new fashion, he’ll also smell a lot less like a stinky dog!
5) Give those paws a wipe
Although your dogs paws are rather cute, they also bring in a lot of unwanted dirt and smells from the great outdoors… not good when you’re trying to banish those doggy odors. Why not try putting down an absorbent door mat by the door to soak up anything on his soggy little feet? You can also leave a micro-fiber cloth near the porch on entrance that you can wipe his paws down with before he even enters the house.
6) Wash then DRY!
Wet dog smell is not appealing. After his bath, don’t just leave the little guy to air dry. Not only will the smell linger in the air, the very damp dank wet-dog smell loves to stick to sofas, beds and other areas your dog frequents. Instead, thoroughly towel him down and, if he’s agreeable, use a nice cool hair dryer to finish the job.
NOTE: Never use a hot dryer on a dog, and avoid sensitive areas like the eyes and ears even with cool air unless you know for sure that your pup will tolerate it.
7) Who needs carpets?
Replacing carpets with a hard wood floor can be an instant solution to the dreaded dog smell. Carpets trap odors and also harbor allergens which can be released when people walk around. It sounds kind of extreme but removing carpets is certainly effective at reducing unwanted smells.
After having two dogs in a carpeted apartment and seeing how much nasty fur and dirt gets stuck there, I told myself that I would never live in a carpeted home that I owned. And to this day, any property I’ve purchased has had hardwood and tile, no carpet and no problems with fur, dirt, stains, or stinky smells. If I want a softer surface, I’ll use a low area rug – the best of both worlds!
8) Try a steam clean
If you’re happy with your carpet but still have an issue with dog odors, try getting it steam cleaned. You can buy or hire carpet steamers but many people opt for a professional company to come and do it for them. Just ask them first to make sure they will be using pet-friendly chemicals during the process. Steam cleaning carpets removes dust, odors, allergens and any other nasties that might be adding to unwanted household smells. But it’s not a guaranteed solution, which I why I always recommend looking for carpet-free floors whenever possible.
So that’s it! All eight of the best tips for keeping your home looking and smelling great with pets. Whether you rent or own your home, follow these tips and your place will be back smelling fresh and inviting in no time!
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