Pets Vs. Carpets: Keep Floors Looking Great
Carpets can be a great addition to any house and come with a whole host of benefits. Besides looking and feeling great, carpets are cheaper and easier to maintain than hard surface flooring and are often the most energy efficient flooring option. For homeowners with pets, carpets provide comfort for the animals, who often spend a lot of time lounging around on the floor. Carpets are also a non-slip surface that absorbs sound, meaning you won’t have to deal with the noises associated with claws and paws on hard surfaces.
However, to homeowners, carpets can also sound like a disaster waiting to happen. Muddy paws, potty accidents, fleas, and unpleasant odors are just a few things that a pet owner with carpets can experience. But this doesn’t always have to be the case! Luckily, there are ways for pets and carpets to live in harmony.
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Best Carpet for Pets
You can preemptively prevent pet messes by choosing a carpet that offers some degree of stain resistance and durability. Some carpets come treated for stain and soil resistance, which provides protection against dirt and grime that pets may track in (or any spills we humans may be responsible for). When it comes to durability, look into the materials used for the flooring. Carpets made from nylon fibers are able to withstand high traffic use. You’ll even find some carpets on the market that have been designed with pets in mind. Other synthetic materials like polyester are cheaper but might not hold up quite as well.
Routine Cleaning is Key
The key to keeping your carpet looking fresh is routine cleaning. Even with carpets specially designed for pets, negligence will lead to the buildup of dirt, leaving your carpet looking dingy. It’s recommended to vacuum at least once a week and opt for a deeper clean every year or so. You can achieve deeper cleans by hiring a professional or DIY options like rented steamers or special carpet shampoos.
How to Get Dog Hair Out Of a Carpet
For the most part, carpet maintenance is pretty simple. However, hairs that become embedded in the carpet fibers can be difficult to remove even with a good vacuum. You’ll find special carpet cleaners at pet stores designed for this very purpose with bristles that attract dog hairs. If you’d rather take the DIY approach, try attaching a window squeegee to the end of a mop handle. The rubber blade will rake up those stubborn hairs, which you can then vacuum away normally after you bring them to the surface.
How to Get Dog Pee Smell Out of Carpet
Unfortunately, accidents do happen. The first tip to getting urine odors out of carpet is to clean up messes as soon as they happen. The longer a liquid soaks, the further down into the carpet it will seep. If urine soaks into the padding underneath the carpet, it is extremely difficult to clean. In addition to the smell and stain, moist under layers can also present other problems like mold growth. In some cases, the only option to rid the carpet of the smell is to replace it altogether.
If Fido does make a mess, place several layers of paper towels to soak up the urine. After the initial towel saturates, replace them with clean ones, applying pressure over the affected area. Repeat until the spot is barely damp, and then rinse the accident area with cool water.
For dry stains, begin by rinsing with water. Consider renting a wet vac if possible. This will allow the dirty water to be thoroughly removed. After the stain has been rinsed, apply a layer of pet odor neutralizer. Allow the spot to dry completely. If there still appears to be a stain after, consider using a high-quality stain remover. Note that steamers should not be used on dry stains, as they may permanently set in the stain and odor.
The Humane Society discourages the use of harsh chemicals like vinegar or ammonia. These scents can actually be counterproductive and cause your pet to reinforce the urine scent mark.
Preventing Future Accidents
Once your pet has marked its area, it’s likely that they’ll return again and again. To prevent future accidents, make the area unattractive or unavailable to them, and use positive reinforcement to let your pet know where the proper place to go is. Ensure that your pet has access to their potty area, whether that be an indoor litter box, a doggie door that lets them go in and out when needed, or frequent walks throughout the day.
By following the simple tips outlined above, you’ll be on your way to having the best of both worlds: a beautiful, clean carpet and a happy four-legged friend!