Animals

5 Easy DIY Ways to Deal With Unwanted Pet Messes

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We love Fido and Fluffy, but their messes? Not so much. Thankfully, we don’t have to resort to harsh, pricey chemicals to whisk away stains and odors. These simple expert remedies are effective!  

cat on fabric

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Rescue soiled fabric with a salt soak 

Someone have an accident on your bedding? Plain old table salt to the rescue! “For urine stains, simply dissolve 1⁄2 cup of table salt in a sink or bucket of water and soak the soiled fabric for about one hour, then launder as you normally would,” advises cleaning expert Joey Green, author of Joey Green’s Amazing Pet Cures ($13.19, Amazon). He explains, “Salt water gently breaks down the protein in urine, leaving your sheets and linens looking and smelling as good as new.”

rubber gloves

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De-fuzz furniture with rubber gloves 

To lift fur from sofas and chairs, just put on a pair of household rubber gloves, dampen them with water, and run your hands anywhere you see pet hair. The wet rubber attracts fur, reveals Green. In fact, according to a new study, this method is even more effective than pet hair removal products, including sticky tape and lint brushes!

pet fur in laundry

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Nix fashion fur balls with dryer sheets 

Prevent hair from sticking to clothes in the first place by rubbing an unused dryer sheet over them. This will create an antistatic barrier that makes the fur drop right off. And weakening the chemical bond will also make existing hair easier to remove.

pet dog

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Erase stubborn stains with a DIY potion 

Cleaning pro Halle Cottis, author of Natural Solutions for Cleaning & Wellness: Health Remedies and Green Cleaning Solutions Without Toxins or Chemicals ($15.84, Amazon), swears by this stain solution, saying it passes the ultimate test: puppy puke! To make: In a blender on low speed, combine 2 Tbs. of liquid castile soap and 1⁄2 cup of warm water. The solution should bubble up in 15 seconds. Rub it into the spot and blot with water. Says Cottis, “I use this all the time on my floors.”

cat on carpet

(Photo Credit: Getty Images)

Conquer carpet odors with ‘disappearing’ vinegar 

A natural antibacterial, vinegar neutralizes pet smells. First, soak up any liquid, then mix equal parts vinegar and water in a spray bottle and apply to the soiled spot. Let sit for 10 minutes and blot with a rag; repeat until the odor is gone. And don’t worry about a lingering vinegar smell: It dissipates as it dries.

This story originally appeared in our print magazine.

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