Having a dog is a wonderful amazing joy that I wouldn’t give up for the world. But with that joy comes a ton of responsibility and a lot of annoyances. Luckily, with a little work, they’re all quite solvable. One is finding a place for him to stay when we travel, which we’ve solved with Wagmore, an amazing boarding facility that Boots just adores. Another is the mess that a big, active dog makes in the house… This problem has taken me a little bit longer to figure out, but I think I’m finally a pro.
Here are six of my tips for how I keep my house clean with a dog. I’m also sharing some photos of my updated office! I got a new rug (see tip #3), a custom desk chair made by my friend Roxy, and added a Sonos speaker which has changed my office music game.
1. Wipe his paws
This might seem obvious, but so many of my friends who have dogs don’t wipe down their dogs when they come inside. Now that it’s colder and wetter out, we wipe Boots’ paws with a towel every single time he comes into the house, no matter what. If we don’t, he tracks in dirt and who knows what else. Every few days, we do a full-body wipe down with just the towel. If he’s really dirty, we’ll use natural wipes, but he’s not a huge fan so we only do it when necessary.
2. Brush brush brush
I brush Boots down once a day to avoid shedding. We’re lucky that he inherited his mom’s Pit Bull coat, but he still has a little Shepard in him so shedding is definitely still an issue. I find that if I brush him daily, it cuts down on shedding by almost 50%. We have this brush and it does the trick. Boots loves getting brushed so it’s a win/win. We try to have him groomed once every two months or even less, because it’s not great for his skin. But between wiping him down and brushing him, he never even smells bad.
3. Get a Vacuum that Moonlights as a Mop
At the end of the day, no matter how much you wipe and brush them, dogs bring in dirt. It’s inevitable. But cleaning it doesn’t have to be hard! Anel and I were recently given a BISSELL CrossWave. Talk about game-changer! This vacuum also cleans your floors, but that description doesn’t do it justice. My cleaning lady mops every single week, but when I used the floor-cleaning function for the first time, you should have seen how dirty the water was. It was so gross. Not only that, you can…wait for it… clean your rugs! It’s like mopping a rug. I can’t tell you how life-changing this has been for us. We had been hiring carpet cleaners ever six months but I honestly don’t think we’ll need to do that anymore. It’s also a great vacuum, even taking away those features.
4. Ditch the light rugs
Unless it’s a Sisal rug, or something made with other natural fibers, anything light-colored is pretty much useless, as far as I can tell. Even with the best cleaner or vacuum in the universe, a white rug is just insane when you have a dog. Not because you can’t clean it, but because you’ll have to clean it far more often. It’s not worth it, I promise! I updated my office carpet (see before pics here) to this fabulous hot pink over-dyed rug which I love.
5. Wash his bed
In Boots’ case, beds. He has four beds around the house (yes he’s spoiled!), that can get a little stinky if not washed regularly. I wash the removable outsides of the beds every two weeks to keep them fresh and clean. I use a natural laundry detergent, that doesn’t bother his skin.
6. Don’t allow him on furniture
Although it might seem strict, we don’t allow Boots on any of the furniture in the house. This cuts way down on things we need to clean. While fur gets on us and in turn on the couches, it’s far less than if he were sleeping on them daily. Per the tip above, we keep beds for him in almost every room so he can be comfy wherever he goes. I know a lot of people would disagree with this decision, but we’re so happy that we trained him not to climb on anything!
What are your tips for keeping a clean house with a pup?
Thank you to BISSELL for sponsoring this post.