There's nothing better than sharing your life with pets, but they are also a lot of work. Having pets doesn't mean having to sacrifice a clean home. But, it does require extra attention keeping both your pets happy and having a house that looks nice. The key to keeping a house clean with pets is to develop a regular daily, weekly, and monthly routine to help your house stay clean — despite any of the messes your pets might make.
1. Litter boxes
Keeping litter boxes clean is a must for cat owners. Although it means more cleaning, having enough litter in the box is important for keeping your cat healthy and preventing messes from cats pottying outside their litter box. In general, you want to have one litter box per cat, plus an extra box. Litter boxes should be scooped at least once daily. In addition to having a daily litter box scooping routine, you'll want to do a complete litter change at least monthly. A complete litter change involves dumping all of the litter, cleaning the litter box itself, and then refilling it with fresh litter. Then, put a reminder in your calendar to replace those litter boxes and scoops annually. Developing a litter scooping and cleaning routine will prevent odors from developing in the litter boxes. It will also help keep your litter boxes clean and welcoming for your cat.
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2. Yard cleaning
If you have a private fenced yard, chances are you're guilty of taking your dog out to go potty without scooping. Dog poop can build up in the yard very quickly — making your home unsightly and creating an odor. Try setting a goal of scooping the poop from your yard each time your dog is taken outside. By making poop scooping a daily routine, you'll also help any grass you have to stay healthier and keep your yard looking and smelling clean.
3. Washing toys
If you have a dog, chances are you have a lot of dog toys around the house — and those toys can get dirty. Create a recurring reminder on your phone or calendar to wash your dog's toys monthly or every other month. Most plush dog toys can be cleaned in a washer and dryer. When you're gathering your dog's toys to be washed, it's a good time to do a review of their toys to see if any are worn and in need of patching or if they should be discarded. You also might want to consider donating any of your dog's toys that aren't being used to a local shelter or rescue group for dogs in need. Keeping your dog's toys clean can help to keep your house looking cleaner. Washing the toys regularly will allow you to keep the toys in good repair and help prevent doggy odors from building up. Having a regular toy washing routine is also more sanitary for your dog. After all, those toys are in their mouth.
4. Washing dishes
Keeping your pet's food and water bowls clean is an easy way to keep your house looking clean and keep your pet's bowls sanitary at the same time. Check the washing instructions for any food and water bowls your dogs and cats have. Depending on the bowls, you may be able to put them into your dishwasher. Otherwise, you can wash them by hand with warm water and dishwashing detergent. Make it part of your routine to wash your pet's food and water dishes daily after each meal to prevent food and saliva buildup on the bowls.
5. Washing bedding
When selecting beds for your cats and dogs be sure to select options that are fully washable, or have covers that can be easily removed and washed in your washer and dryer. This helps maintain the general cleanliness of your dog's bed and will make it easier to deal with any unexpected messes, like when your pets are sick. Try to create a routine of regularly washing your pets' bedding. An easy way to remember to wash their beds is to do so whenever you wash the sheets on your own bed. Whenever you are washing your pets' bedding, don't forget to wash any of the blankets or pillows your pets' might enjoy sleeping on.
6. Tidying up and spot cleaning
Pets can be messy, and they enjoy taking all their toys out to spread around your house. Life can get busy, but if one of your pets has an accident it should be cleaned up right away. Then, try to create a daily routine of tidying up your dog's and cat's toys, as well as any less critical messes that have been made such as mopping up water spilled from bowls. Try to develop a routine of finding a time each evening before you go to bed to tidy any minor pet messes and toys that have been played with during the day. This allows you to start the next day with a clean house.
By establishing cleaning routines, you'll be providing you and your pets with a clean and sanitary environment to live in. By building consistent cleaning routines you'll be able to keep your home clean, and it will make caring for your pet and your home less overwhelming. Having these daily and weekly routines breaks the cleaning into manageable tasks — and gives you more time to spend quality time with your pets.