Bringing a dog into your life and home is one of the most rewarding experiences you can have. However, with this joy also comes the distinctive smell that our furry friends leave behind. Whether it’s wet dog smell, dog breath, or just that regular doggy odour, keeping your house smelling fresh can seem like a challenging task. Today we’ll delve into the hows and whys of keeping your home free from pet odours.
The Origin of Dog Smells
Before we get into the how-to’s, it’s important to understand why dogs smell the way they do. Dogs have various scent glands throughout their bodies – particularly in their ears, anal area, and between their paw pads. Additionally, their skin and coat harbour bacteria and yeast, which also contribute to their distinctive smell. When your dog’s fur gets wet, these odours can be particularly strong. Understanding this can help you target your cleaning and grooming efforts more effectively.
An effective way to minimise dog smell in your home is to keep your dog clean. Regular grooming is essential, but remember not to overdo it as it could dry out your dog’s skin, leading to other health issues. A monthly bath using a high-quality, dog-friendly shampoo is usually sufficient for most breeds, but dogs with specific skin conditions might need different care. Brushing your dog’s fur regularly also helps remove loose hair and dead skin, which can contribute to the smell.
Cleaning your dog’s ears regularly with a vet-approved solution can help prevent ear infections, a common source of unpleasant smells. Also, pay attention to your dog’s dental hygiene. Regular brushing with dog-specific toothpaste and providing dental chews can keep bad breath at bay.
Dog Bed and Blanket Cleaning
Your dog’s bedding is often the main culprit when it comes to lingering dog smells in your home. Dogs can transfer oils, dirt, and odours onto their beds, so it’s important to wash their bedding regularly. Ideally, dog beds and blankets should be laundered once a week with pet-safe, fragrance-free detergent. If the bed has a removable cover, wash it separately.
Regular House Cleaning
Keeping your home clean is a crucial step in reducing pet odours. Regularly vacuum carpets, rugs, and furniture to remove pet hair and dander, which can hold onto smells. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter to capture the maximum amount of pet allergens.
Wash your floors with a pet-friendly cleaner. Pay extra attention to the areas your dog frequents, like their favourite spot in the living room or near the back door.
Air Purifiers and Deodorizers
Air purifiers can help remove pet dander and associated odours from your home – they may be expensive but are conveniently available on sites that trade pets online. Consider a purifier with a HEPA filter for best results. Natural deodorizers can also help freshen your home without using harsh chemicals. Baking soda is known for its odour-absorbing properties. Try sprinkling some on your carpet or dog’s bed before vacuuming. Another natural option is to boil a pot of water with citrus slices or cinnamon sticks, which can help neutralise doggy odours.
Proper Nutrition and Hydration
Believe it or not, what your dog eats can affect how they smell. High-quality, balanced diets can lead to healthier skin and coat, reducing odours. Dogs on poor quality diets might produce more oils on their skin, leading to stronger smells.
Keeping your dog well-hydrated is also important. Good hydration helps maintain healthy skin and fur, further reducing odours.
Despite our best efforts, dogs can have accidents in the house, especially puppies and senior dogs. If your dog has an accident, clean it up immediately to prevent the smell from setting in. Use an enzymatic cleaner designed for pet messes to break down the odour-causing bacteria.
Keeping your home free from doggy smells requires consistent effort in various areas. Regular grooming and cleaning, combined with maintaining a healthy diet for your pet, will go a long way in ensuring a fresher-smelling home. It might take some time to find a routine that works for you and your furry friend, but the end result – a clean, fresh home – is certainly worth it. After all, a house that smells good is more inviting, comfortable, and healthier for everyone – both two-legged and four-legged residents alike.