Keeping a clean home with a pet is already a difficult task. But this can be even harder in an apartment where pets can have less access to the outdoors. This can really be a problem when they need to use the bathroom, not to mention shedding and odors. Here are some pro tips from Sears Clean on how to keep your carpets clean and well-maintained with pets in the home.
Remove large clumps of hair from carpeting
Keeping a home hair-free with a pet isn’t easy. This can get even more complicated if your vacuum cleaner gets clogged while you’re tidying up. To keep this from happening, take care of bigger clumps using a lint roller, a rubber carpet rake, or even duct tape if you’re really in a bind. Vacuuming frequently will also lower the chances of finding dust bunnies on the floor.
Get to new stains fast
With pets as with life, accidents happen. The key to making sure that accidents don’t become lasting stains is to take care of it right after it happens. Step one is to remove any solids using a dustpan or even a dull knife if necessary. Then grab a roll of paper towels, lay several down on the trouble-spot, and weigh them down either with a heavy object or by standing on it yourself. Once the area is dry, prevent discoloration by cleaning the carpet area thoroughly with tepid water and dish soap.
Find old stains
If you can’t get to the stain immediately, the first step to removing it is to find it. Old stains on carpeting can be tricky to locate, but it can be done either with your own sense of smell or a black light. Neutralize smells using a combination of vinegar and cold water. Then use a carpet cleaner to get the stain out by making sure that instructions are carefully followed, and make sure to use some elbow grease since they may not come out easily. Getting your carpet cleaned professionally about once to twice a year will help get rid of the stains you miss. However, avoid steam cleaners because they can set the stain deeper and make odors worse.
Of course, nobody wants to deal with these issues, so here are some preemptive solutions. The first is to make sure that your pet is groomed regularly to prevent those big clumps of hair in the first place. Another trick is to use baby gates to keep your dog or cat in certain areas within the apartment.
To prevent other accidents, getting to stains fast not only ensures easier removal, but also removes unappealing (but appealing to your animal) scents quickly. If the scent remains, the chances of a repeat accident in that same spot are much higher, so it's ideal to get the stain and smell out ASAP. The final step is to make the pet’s bathroom area more attractive through training.