Pet Maintenance - Oro Valley Real Estate
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Pet-friendly maintenance and decor tips that can help keep your house a sneeze-free zone.
Dump the drapes:
Drapes trap pet allergens. Opt for blinds or shades instead of fabric window treatments. If you cannot live without cloth on your windows, go with fabric that’s machine-washable so you can take down your window treatments and toss them in the washer regularly. Remove dander from blinds or shades by vacuuming them with a cleani:ng attachment once a week.
Reconsider the wall-to-wall carpet:
Carpet is a trap for dander, urine and other pet-related allergens. They settle deep into the padding, beyond the reach of a vacuum. Every time you walk across the carpet, you stir up those allergens and get them swirling in the air. If you are considering a flooring upgrade, go with hardwood or tile floors. If you must have a semisoft surface underfoot, top those impermeable floors with machine-washable area rugs that you can wash frequently.
Choose furniture with easy-to-clean upholstery:
Say yes to leather, pleather, microfiber, denim, canvas and outdoor or performance fabrics. All resist stains and can be easily cleaned with a steam cleaner or even a microfiber cloth. Slipcovers are a great way to allergy-proof your furniture. You can throw them in the washing machine once a week, making it easy to get rid of all the allergens that might make you sneeze while still protecting your furniture from pet damage.
Clean, clean, clean:
Staying on top of housecleaning goes a long way to keeping pet-related allergens at bay. Dander sticks to furniture, walls, stairs, vents, woodwork, the tops of appliances and accumulates in room corners. Vacuum everything at least once a week with attachments designed for cleaning specific surfaces. Dust your furniture, baseboards, ceilings and walls regularly. There’s dander and other animal allergens in that dust.
Upgrade your vacuum cleaner:
Get a powerful vacuum with a HEPA filter that’s specially made to trap tiny particles of dander, dust, hair and other allergens. Allergy-proofing a house isn’t a job for a wimpy vacuum, so look for a model that has a filter certified asthma and allergy friendly by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.
Embrace minimalism:
Animal allergens are sticky, so the fewer throw pillows, collectibles, books and furniture you have in your home, the fewer surfaces allergens can accumulate on. Fewer items mean less to dust, and less dust means less dander.
Use HEPA air cleaners:
HEPA air cleaners filter pet allergens from the air. You can buy portable air cleaners that can be moved from room to room, as needed, or models installed alongside your central HVAC system that are big and powerful enough to clean pet allergens from the entire house.
Change HVAC filters monthly:
Clean or replace the filters in your heating and air conditioning system. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on frequency, but if you’re sensitive to pet dander or have a couple of pets, it’s wise to vacuum or change your filter monthly. You may also want to get a HEPA filter for your HVAC unit to help combat allergies. Be sure to look for one with a MERV rating of at least 17 to be the most effective.
Bathe and brush your pet regularly:
Consider setting up an outdoor bathing station to make cleaning allergens off your pet easier. If your dog spends a lot of time outside, pay attention to the plants in and around your yard. Make sure there’s nothing like ragweed planted nearby that makes you sneeze and wheeze. Keep your pet away from areas where pollen-laden plants may lurk.
Make your bedroom a pet-free zone:
Yes, snuggling in bed with your pup is pure unadulterated joy, but if pet dander bugs you, you’re better off letting your pup or kitty sleep elsewhere. Can’t live without a pet in the bed? Choose another room to designate as a no-pet zone, so you have a place to go that’s dander-free.
Wash your pet’s beds and toys weekly:
Pet-related allergens will get all over your pets’ belongings. Make sure your dog or cat’s bed has a removable cover that can be tossed in a washing machine and easily cleaned. Make sure their toys are washable, too, and run them through a dishwasher if they’re hard plastic or rubber and a washing machine if they’re fabric.