Keeping an apartment clean is something that most of us would never categorize as “fun.” However, when you own a dog (or two… or three…) cleaning up is a job that just cannot be delayed or ignored. Dogs shed. A lot. And they drool. A lot. They track dirt and mud onto the floor. And some dogs are just super active and love to make a mess of your otherwise clean, organized space.
On one hand, as a pet owner, you hopefully already know what you have signed up for. If keeping your place tidy in spite of your furry friend(s) has become a hassle, here are some tips for dog owners to get you–and your apartment–back on track.
Get used to cleaning
If you own a pet, you are probably already resigned to the fact that you may have to clean up more than the average apartment dweller. If you want to learn how to keep your apartment clean when you own a dog, you have to put in the effort. Daily sweeping and/or vacuuming may be necessary because that pet hair lands everywhere. For a quick hair pick up around the house, you might be surprised to learn that dryer sheets–used for dusting instead of freshening laundry–can get the job done in seconds. A roll of heavy duty tape is also great for picking up those stray hairs.
Opt for outdoor rugs
If you're a dog owner and your dog is in the habit of soiling your carpet or rugs, you may need to change how your apartment's floors are covered. Outdoor rugs can easily be used inside. Because outdoor rugs are meant to withstand the elements, they are more durable than typical rugs meant for interior decor. Stains are not as visible on outdoor rugs, depending on the color, and the more solid material makes them easier to sweep or vacuum without the raised or fuzzy texture of standard indoor rugs.
Clean Fido’s stuff, too
It’s not just your possessions that you will have to maintain. You also need to keep up with Fido’s dog bed, toys, and other belongings. If you’re trying to figure out how to keep your apartment and your dog bed has a removable cover, that’s an easy job. If not, research how to best shampoo or wash your specific bedding material and type. Plush toys can usually be washed in a washing machine while rubber and plastic toys can be refreshed with a good soak in warm, soapy water.
Get to grooming
Brushing your dog and taking regular trips to the groomer can cut down on just how much your dog sheds hair around your apartment. While grooming is an obvious way to keep your pet squeaky clean, it’s also a way to keep your apartment clean, too! If possible, set up regular grooming appointments–usually about monthly to every six weeks or so–to keep the fluff and dust bunnies from getting too out of control.
Take care of your vacuum
Just because you invested hundreds of dollars in a great vacuum for your apartment does not mean it will keep your place looking like a million bucks. You have to put forth some work when it comes to maintaining that fancy vacuum. How often are you cleaning or changing the filter and the brush roller? Do you check the attachments to make sure they are still in good condition? Is the hose blocked with excess dust, dirt, or pet hair? Do you empty the bag or canister before or after each use? Even the best vacuum will lose suction and perform poorly if it is not maintained well and regularly.
All of the tips for dog owners listed above should do a pretty good job at keeping your apartment from smelling like the dog that lives with you. But if cleaning regularly is not doing the trick, do whatever you can to mask that annoying pet odor. This could be a combination of things–air or carpet fresheners, scented plug-ins, or scented candles. If scented solutions is not your thing, you can also open up a few windows in your apartment and let some fresh air neutralize any foul pet odors lingering inside.
How have you maintained a clean apartment while owning a pet?