Home and Car Cleaning Guide for Pet Owners

This cleaning guide for pet owners will show you how easy cleaning up after your pet can be. Once you’ve decided on a pet, stock your house with basic pet cleaning supplies. For dogs, especially puppies, you need to make sure you can clean the floors, pick up any accidents, and install floor protection by the doors to avoid muddy feet. Cats need litter boxes, and a lint roller can’t hurt! Scroll down for more helpful cleaning tips for pet owners.

Free Insurance Comparison

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Natasha McLachlan is a writer who currently lives in Southern California. She is an alumna of California College of the Arts, where she obtained her B.A. in Writing and Literature. Her current work revolves around insurance guides and informational articles. She truly enjoys helping others learn more about everyday, practical matters through her work.

Full Bio →

Written by

Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance for 10 years. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate...

Full Bio →

Reviewed by Laura Walker
Former Licensed Agent

UPDATED: Nov 5, 2020

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We are not affiliated with any one insurance company and cannot guarantee quotes from any single insurance company.

Our insurance industry partnerships don’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own. To compare quotes from many different insurance companies please enter your ZIP code above to use the free quote tool. The more quotes you compare, the more chances to save.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by insurance experts.

Owning a pet is a great experience. They teach responsibility, they show love and loyalty, they are companions who are faithful and kind, and they can brighten up your life in innumerable ways. Pets can also be messy. They shed, or get dirty, or have accidents in the house, or just smell weird sometimes. Fortunately, it’s easy to clean up after pets, stay ahead of any messes they may make, and keep your home and belongings protected from mess while still enjoying the love and companionship of a pet!

Cleaning Up After Pets

Pets make messes. It’s a fact of life. But cleaning up after them doesn’t have to be a source of anxiety or even a ton of work! It’s important to think about what kind of messes you are willing and able to clean up before you start to look for a pet. You should always adopt, not shop, but what kind of pet you adopt will depend on your physical capability and temperament as well! Are you physically healthy and have time to spend with a pet? A dog might be a great home and travel companion! Is it hard for you to go outside or downstairs often and are busy? Maybe a cat would be better! Are you away from home a lot? Fish are low maintenance and just as cute!

Once you’ve decided on a pet, stock your house with basic pet cleaning supplies. For dogs, especially puppies, you need to make sure you can clean the floors, pick up any accidents, and maybe put floor protection by the doors to avoid muddy feet. Cats need litter boxes, and a lint roller can’t hurt! Fish need an extra bowl or clean tank in addition to their main one for when you need to clean it. Once you have these supplies in place, you should be able to transition your pet into their new life easily!

Resources:

Compare The Best Insurance Quotes In The Country

Compare quotes from the top insurance companies and save!

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Shedding Fur

Although cats and dogs shed, there are a few steps you can take to make cleaning up fur easier. First, if you really don’t like shedding, a long-haired dog or cat is not for you. Pick a dog that doesn’t shed as much, or a short haired cat. Second, make sure you have lint rollers or some other device to remove hair. If you live in a place with carpet, vacuuming often is a good idea and, for hardwood floors, sweeping often usually keeps hair from accumulating. For the car, regular cleaning and vacuuming is also recommended. Consider getting a portable vacuum for the car if you do not already have one.

Resources:

Keeping Paws Clean

If you have a dog or cat, they are going to get their paws dirty. Dogs love to go outside and get in the dirt. Even if they are relatively clean dogs, they can still track mud and grass inside. Cats use a litter box, and so they can get litter on their feet and track it through the house. Having mats in front of doors and near the litter box is a great way to keep mud or litter from being tracked through the house or vehicle. Keeping your yard free of muddy spots and the litter box clean can also help!

Resources:

Stain Removal

If a pet has an accident, or even if they’re just clumsy and knock something over, sometimes you may have to remove stains. There are many commercial pet stain removers on the market, and these are almost always non-toxic to pets, something that is essential when you have animals in the home.

Resources:

Compare The Best Insurance Quotes In The Country

Compare quotes from the top insurance companies and save!

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Smells and Odors

Pets can also smell. Fish tanks should be cleaned regularly, and dogs and cats should be bathed often. Cats clean themselves, but they can also benefit from a cleaning, even with special wipes for pets. If your dog gets outside and comes back in smelling bad, or if a skunk gets too close to them, there are many remedies. The “wet dog smell” can also be alleviated with candles, car deodorizers, and/or air circulation!

Resource:

Travel Crates, Fish Tanks, and Other Pet Containers

If you have to transport or, in the case of fish, house your pet in one place, you should also keep their containers clean. For dogs and cats, this means cleaning out the bottom of the crate, keeping fresh water and food in it, a litter box for cats, and maybe even an old shirt of yours to make them more comfortable and calm. For fish, making sure that they have a secure and clean space to travel or stay in is key.

Resource:

Protecting Surfaces

Pets can damage surfaces in your home and car, but there are some ways to prevent that. Make sure that your floors are well-maintained and safe for pets and keep your pets’ nails trimmed to prevent snags or scratches. Never declaw a cat, but you can trim their nails! This is actually helping to keep them safe as well. For fish, try putting a mat under their tank in case of leaks.

Resources:

Compare The Best Insurance Quotes In The Country

Compare quotes from the top insurance companies and save!

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Protecting Your Furniture

While you can choose to keep pets off furniture, it’s actually more effective just to protect your furniture. Pets probably won’t follow your rules when you aren’t home, plus your home is their entire world, and by keeping them off the furniture, you’re making that world even smaller. Putting blankets on couches and covers on seats in your vehicle can help with hair and wear and tear on seating, and if you have a young animal that likes to scratch or chew, consider wrapping your table legs in foil or another deterrent.

Resources:

Staying Ahead of the Mess

Although there will be messes, you can do a lot to prevent them from becoming overwhelming. Basic maintenance can be a big part of staying ahead of any messes. It may also be worth it to invest in taking some time every day to pick up for 5 minutes, removing the clutter that can exacerbate pet messes.

Resource:

Cleaning Tips

One of the best cleaning tips for dealing with pets is to have a dedicated space for their personal cleaning. Dog and cat shampoo, wipes, sprays, and more should all be kept in one location for ease of use and to save time. Having an out-of-the-way location for the litter box is also a good idea. In addition, it may be helpful to have a cleaning schedule, particularly for litter boxes and fish tanks.

Resources:

Related Links

Free Insurance Comparison

Compare quotes from the top insurance companies and save!

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption