5 Tips To Ensure Your Pets Don’t Destroy Your Holiday-Ready Home
The holidays are upon us: this means that many of us are breaking out the deep-cleaning supplies in preparation for our holiday guests. Unfortunately, our furry friends can detract from our efforts. Here are five tips to keep your home holiday-ready, even with pets.
Keep Your Pet Looking Fresh.
Pet hair is one of the biggest foes of the clean, allergen-free home. To reduce the amount of pet hair shed, give your pet frequent brushings, and a full-service shampoo at least once a month. Not only will you bond with your pooch, but you can toss the hair directly in the trash can, rather than watch it accumulate all over your home. Take your pet to the groomer’s for a short holiday haircut to reduce shedding even more. Clip nails, trim fur and wipe dirty paws after your pet plays outside. Wipe down your pet’s face after it eats, or risk pet food being trailed over your floors and furniture.
Protect Your Floors.
Even the most well-trained pets can have accidents, so protect your floors with washable rugs and absorbent mats. Any vegetable-dyed or fancy fringed rugs should be put away if your puppy is teething, or if you have an excitable chewer on your hands. Keep a pet-friendly carpet cleaner available just in case, and consider having your carpets professionally cleaned before the holidays. For the best results in clean floors, choose a material like laminate flooring, sheet linoleum, or tile, which can be easily wiped clean. Your pet-allergic guests will thank you!
Consider Your Walls.
If you are considering a holiday spruce-up paint job, choose a washable semi-gloss paint or vinyl-backed wallpaper: both will be easier to wipe down in case of messy pets. If you have invested in special wall-coverings or artwork, display them in an area where your pet cannot reach. Washable wall-coverings are a great pet-friendly option for holiday decorating.
Simplify Your Windows.
Long tasseled cords, draping floor-length fabrics, and vertical blinds may be a recipe for disaster with a curious or playful pet. Keep your windows simple with shorter curtains or rolling blinds. These options still look chic, but your pet is less likely to pull them down or get tangled up in the window treatments. Don’t forget to tighten the screens in each of your windows: a curious kitten could easily fall through a loose screen.
Choose Furniture Wisely.
Dark colors and fabrics are the most forgiving of pet hair and accidents. Furniture is a major investment, and often not easily cleaned. It may be best to give your pet a special home of her own, and exercise vigilance about your pet staying off the furniture. A cozy pet bed placed near the family room may give your pet all the social time she needs while encouraging her to stay off expensive leather or vinyl couches. If you do allow your pet on the couch, keep her nails short and consider a washable slipcover to easily remove hair.
With a little planning and some extra cleaning care, it’s possible to enjoy your pet’s company while keeping a clean and allergen-free home for holiday guests.