I know this is an extremely biased statement, but I have one of the best dogs in the whole wide world. We adopted Hunter back in 2013 and he is my ultimate fur baby. He is part German Shepherd, part Coon Hound… or so we think. But that’s how it happens with shelter dogs, right? You can guess at their breed but most of the time, but you never really know. Well, Hunter has the love and intelligence of a shepherd, but the extreme laziness of a hound dog. Extreme. laziness.
He can spend an entire afternoon without moving off of the couch or bed. Sometimes, as I’m working from home, I realize I haven’t heard or seen him in a while, so I go find him, and he was exactly where I left him four hours ago. I love him dearly, but his shedding drives me crazy! You see, spending half the day on the same spot on the couch creates the most hairy furniture imaginable. Sometimes it is so covered that I imagine the couch will grow legs and walk away. It’s incredibly embarrassing some times, so I’ve had to devise a few strategies to combat the daily battle of endless pet hair.
This one is an obvious one, no? Keep lint rollers handy. The real tip here is to keep them handy EVERYWHERE. I have one in each end table in the living room, one in the dining room, one in the guest bedroom, one in our bedroom, and one in each of our cars. The point here is to have them so readily available, that you don’t have an excuse to not clean it up right then and there. The easier it is, the more often it will get done.
Even after lint-rolling, those nooks and crannies in the furniture are still clogged. When thinking about buying furniture or updating your current set, slipcovers are an incredible way to keep the pet hair in check. I wash our IKEA slipcovers once every couple months to get a serious clean. I was dogsitting last weekend, doubling the fur in the house and on the couches, but I didn’t care. It was incredibly liberating to know that they could get the furniture as dirty as they wanted, because as soon as the weekend was over the slip covers were going in the wash.
Be sure to read the wash instructions so the covers do not fade or shrink prior to washing – or even better, prior to purchasing. I am far from a laundry expert, so I opted for the basic Ektorp slipcovers. I’ve done nothing special with washing them, yet they are holding up quite well. (Although don’t tell my husband that – I’m looking for an excuse to change the color of our couch.)
I have friends that are allergic to dogs, especially Hunter. No matter how hard I try to reduce the pet hair, it will always be lingering. In an attempt to make my friends feel welcome, I have designated dog-free zones. This one takes time and patience, as it involves training your dog, but it is well worth it. Hunter knows that he isn’t allowed on the big white chair in the living room, or the guest bedroom, unless I explicitly allow him. I like to think that it puts my guests’ minds at ease a bit about coming to a dog-loving house. And if all else fails, I keep allergy medicine in the guest bedroom just in case.
This one seems just as obvious as the lint roller, huh? Well the important part is to make this part of your weekly routine. Every Saturday morning, Stephen and I go to a morning gym class at 9:30am. Sleeping in for me is 8:00am at the absolute latest, so I take this time to get some chores checked off my mental list. Later when we come home, I am so proud that the vacuuming is already taken care of! One less thing to do, and more time to enjoy the rest of the day.
I suggest finding a time in your weekly schedule that works for you, and dedicating it to vacuuming. Maybe its as soon as you get home from work, or after the kids go to school. Whenever it is, find the time and stick with it. Pretend like it is an appointment you cannot miss. You will be so grateful once it is done.
If you have any other tips or tricks you use, I’d be happy to hear them! Anything to make life a little easier, right?