Attention all animal lovers! We know you’ll never get tired of the cute, cuddly companionship of your pets but you could definitely do without the mess of fur throughout your home. We have the solution: Our guide to keeping your home from being taken over by pet fur.
Pets are amazing aren’t they? They’re cute, cuddly, endlessly entertaining and they love you unconditionally. What’s not to love about pets? The pet fur. That’s what.
Oh. my. goodness. The fur.
At our house we have 2 fluffy tuxedo cats, Sammy and Oreo, and one short-haired Jack Russell/Sharpei cross named Chuck. Chuck looks like he doesn’t shed much but he’s actually worse than the two cats combined!
I really had no idea what I was in for when we got all of these pets. We started out with just Sammy and he was just so easy-going, and easy to care for, and of course cute, that we just kept getting suckered into more and more pets. And then I realized that I had some learning to do about how to deal with all of this fur!
That’s our sweet Sammy. He’s handsome for sure, but the more he grows, the more fur he has to leave all over the house!
Over the last few years, I’ve definitely picked up a few tricks to keep this situation under control so I thought I’d share them with you here today!
Vacuum your house
Yes, it’s true. Sometimes the most obvious answer to your problem is the right one. Increasing your vacuuming frequency will definitely make a big difference to help the situation. Try sprinkling a little baking soda or my DIY carpet cleaner and deodorizer over your carpeted areas first to help remove pet odors and loosen some of the pet fur. It can be hard to find the time to vacuum your whole house but every little bit helps! Or if it’s in the budget, you may want to consider treating yourself to a robot vacuum that will take care of this task for you, all day, every day, or whenever you tell it to! I haven’t reached the point of caving in and getting one of those robot vacuums yet, but I do love my cordless vacuum. Make sure you’re using all of you vacuum attachments to their fullest potential by checking out this post here called How to actually use all of those vacuum cleaner attachments!
Speaking of vacuum cleaner attachments, you can always use this one to go straight to the source of all that pet fur:
Do a whole lot of laundry
Pet fur can turn up in some of the strangest places and things made out of fabric are definitely attract most of the hair and fur in your house. You may have a blanket that your pets never lay on, but that somehow mysteriously has fur all over it anyway! Taking the time to wash things like pillows, cushion covers, and throw rugs more regularly will definitely decrease the number of times that you end up mysteriously covered in pet fur too! When you launder an item, double-check it as it’s coming out of the dryer to see if the fur has been removed. It can really help to run some things through a second time, especially if it was really furry to begin with. Even a quick tumble in the dryer will help remove a lot of fur and you’ll see the evidence in the link trap when the load is done! That’s definitely one of life’s little pleasures! 🙂
Clean as you go and don’t give up!
If you start to feel like your furry home is a hopeless cause, don’t lose heart! Every little bit really does help and there are tons of tools out there that will make a difference! Unfortunately, there’s no one tool that will completely cure this problem, but the good news is that many of them really do help a lot and make your life quite a bit easier. Lint rollers are great for clothing and upholstery touch ups and rubber bristled brushes helps with stairs and tight spots like the edges of carpeted areas. A daily pass with a swiffer or a dust mop (use my homemade reusable swiffer cloths to save money) is always a good idea, and a squeegee will help you pull unbelievable amounts of hair off of carpeted areas if your vacuum is having trouble getting everything. Just keep at it, little by little!
Brush your pets with the right tools
There are so many different pet brushes being invented all of the time, and again, all of them help but none of them is the perfect cure-all tool. For our cats, the good old cat brushes are just fine, as long as we remember to use them regularly. Daily is best of course. This is a great job for kids that will really help you out and that will keep them happy and un-bored for at least a few minutes!
Since Chuck is a short-haired dog, I like to use a special de-shedding tool most of the time to brush him. He was adopted from a shelter so he can be pretty timid and this brush made him a little nervous at first but he’s actually grown to really love it. If you’ve ever been around horses, it’s almost exactly the same type of thing that you would use on them. It really gets a lot of fur out. I like to use Waterless Bath, which is an enzyme-based product that you just spray on to your pet’s coat, before brushings to help loosen the fur and dirt, and to leave a fresh(er) scent. Again, Chuck used to be terrified of this stuff but now he loves it. 🙂
If you have an especially nervous pet, I really love these brush mitts, that make them feel like they’re just getting a nice comforting back rub. 🙂
I had the chance to try out one of these fancy furminator brushes at my vet’s office and it really did get quite a bit of fur off of Chuck. Well, it was about the same amount at the de-shedding tool gets off, but I think this would be great for a longer-furred pup. My vet doesn’t sell these, but she’s swears by them! There’s even a furminator broom now, which is a pretty excellent idea! 🙂
Consider diet and supplements
Your pet’s coat can be a reflection of their overall health so feeding them high-quality food can really help with shedding issues. A lot of dogs can shed too much if they’re low in omega-3’s so my vet had me start giving Chuckers fish oil supplements a few years ago. Even if your pet is in great health and just has a regular amount of shedding, Omega-3’s can’t hurt! Just regular soft gels from the drug store work fine, no need for fancy pet supplements. Chuckers thinks they’re treats! 🙂
Consult your vet
Of course, like you would consult with your own doctor, always have a chat with your vet if you suspect that your pet’s shedding might be caused by some kind of a health issue. Veterinarians actually have all kinds of helpful tips and tricks to try, even if your pet’s shedding isn’t health-related. We’ve started using an essential oil based product called Dermoscent that helps soothe and hydrate irritated pet skin, which can help with shedding issues, and it really helps improve pet odors! You can probably get this product to try through your vet, which is where I pick it up, but I found it on Amazon as well, for about the same price. Of course I love that it’s 100% natural too!
If you’re dealing with shedding problems and the constant dirty house feeling that can result, there are lots of things that you can do to help! Living with pets can be a clean and tidy experience!
What do you do around the house to help deal with all that pet fur?
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Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.