February 12th, 2013 posted by

Shedding is like the weather — you can talk and talk about it, but no one can really do anything about it. Particularly if your decor favors plush carpets and upholstered furniture, pet hair tops the list of cleaning dilemmas — as well as most people’s lists of “What I Would Change about My Animals If I Could.” Here’s how to cope with what can’t be changed.

For Dogs and Cats

Bring Me That Brush!

If everything in your house has a fine layer of dog or cat hair that seems to reappear as soon as you vacuum, you need to go straight to the source. Establish a once-a-day brushing routine, always in the same place and at the same time. Furry pets will shed less hair if you brush them regularly, and a consistent pattern will get animals in the habit of reminding you that it’s time for a currycomb.

Defeat Floating Fur

After brushing, pry the matted hairs from the tines of the comb or the base of the brush bristles and dispose of them. Do this each and every time you brush. Otherwise, you’re just leaving the hairs to waft back into the air, scoot back under the bed, and form more dust bunnies — or creep back onto your clothing.

Throw a Damper on It

If, no matter how often you vacuum, it seems as though your upholstered furniture is still covered with fur, try this easy solution. Dampen a piece of fabric — chamois works best, but any cotton rag will do — with some water and rub it over the fabric. The pet hair will come right off. //

Guard against Static

No matter what method of fur removal you choose, you can make it even more effective by first spraying the affected area with some antistatic spray, such as Static Guard (which you can find at discount and grocery stores).

Don’t Shed on Me

To keep hairs off wool and fuzzy clothing — their favorite clinging places — try to pet animals and say good-bye before you put on your coat to leave. Keep a large shirt around to drape over “dry clean only” suits and sweaters when you’re around the pets or sitting in their favorite chairs.

Neatness Counts

Always hang up coats and any other dry-cleaned clothing, preferably in a closed closet, and place sweaters in closed drawers. Dogs and particularly cats find these items irresistible when they are left lying around or are hung over the backs of chairs. And if your animal indulges, you may not appreciate the resulting dry-cleaning bill — let alone the fact that your clothing might still have hairs on it when it comes back.

For Dogs Only

The Pup’s All Set — Now How about His Brush?

Keep your dog’s brush clean the same way you clean your own. First, clean out all the dry hair with an old comb. Next, fill a basin or a bucket with some hot water and add a capful (a tablespoon or two) of your favorite shampoo. Rub it into the bristles, then let the brush soak for about five minutes. Rinse the brush clean with hot water and then a little white vinegar, which will remove any soap residue.

Bring in the Heavy (Cleaning) Artillery

If you’ve neglected your dog’s brush for so long that shampoo doesn’t do a good enough job of cleaning it, try this method. Pour some hot water into a bucket or basin and add a little ammonia. Soak the brush for about half an hour, then rinse well with hot water.

For Cats Only

Make Kitty Part of Your Decorating Scheme

If your decor is not terribly formal, consider working in a cat-size flat pillow on a couch or a soft, washable throw on a particularly appealing chair (at least for the spring, which is prime shedding season). (4 Posts)

Featured Contributor

Cindy Rowe
Cindy Rowe (7 Posts)

Cindy Rowe is the owner/editor of Crazylou Creations blog. On the blog, you will find a little bit of crazy, and a whole lot of fun! As a FT working mother, she still finds time to create crafts, play around in the kitchen, plan parties and exercise. You'll find all of this and more on her blog!

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