As you may or may not know spring has sprung, which for many of us means time for spring cleaning. There are many chemicals out there that are safe to use around pets, as well as harmful to our four legged friends. Here in one convenient location is a brief list of those things.
Steam: we all know water is safe to use around dogs, however it is also safe to use as a cleaner, no surprise there. By turning the water into steam you give it that extra cleaning goodness, less scrubbing more heat, steam loosens dirt and grime which can then be wiped away easily, or with a little elbow grease.
Soap: easy, safe and effective floor cleaner to use around dogs as long as the detergent is rinsed completely from the floor before allowing a dog access to the area. If you don’t clean all of the soap up after cleaning it can cause skin irritation for dogs, and ingesting soap can lead to stomach upset, vomiting and diarrhea, no one wants to have to clean the same space twice. When using soap be certain to get all of it off the cleansed surface.
Vinegar and Water: Not only is vinegar for cooking it is a great cleaning agent, mixing vinegar with water creates a very pet friendly and kid safe cleaning agent, plus you won’t have to worry about your four legged friend licking the floor for a while. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Animal Poison Control Center, a solution of vinegar and water is perfectly safe to use as a floor cleaner around pets, including dogs.
Vinyl, Tile and Stone Floors: To create a cleaning solution for these surfaces mix a gallon of warm water with a cup of distilled white vinegar. The vinegar will clean, disinfect and deodorize. The vinegar is nontoxic and safe for pets. In fact, this type of vinegar can be sprayed onto a pet’s coat, or added to the water dish, to act as a natural repellent for fleas and ticks. Dip a mop in the cleaning solution, wring out excess water and mop over the floors. Allow to air dry.
Hardwood and Laminate Floors: Using the same basic solution can be used for hardwood and laminate floors but should be diluted a bit more to prevent damage to the flooring. Use only half of the vinegar for these types of floors, this time mixing one-half cup of distilled white vinegar with one gallon of warm water. Dip a mop in the solution, wring out excess water and mop over the floors. To prevent over saturation, dry the floors immediately after cleaning by wiping with a clean cloth or dry mop.
Products to Avoid: There are also a few products that are all-natural, yet harmful to pets, that should be avoided at all costs. Ammonia is highly effective in cleaning and disinfecting, yet can be toxic if ingested, especially in pets. If using any retail floor cleaning product, read label ingredients to be sure ammonia is not an ingredient.
Borax is another effective way to clean floors but is harmful if ingested. If using any commercial product, be sure that borax is not a listed ingredient.
Swiffer Wet Jet: Every now and then, an alarming email surfaces on the Internet saying Swiffer Wet Jet contains substances that are toxic to pets. However, Proctor & Gamble (the makers of the Swiffer Wet Jet) and the ASPCA have debunked these claims. According to the ASPCA, Swiffer Wet Jet is safe to use around dogs and other pets when used as directed.
Other Cleaners: You may be surprised to learn that almost every floor cleaner is safe to use around your pet. According to the ASPCA, the key to safely using these products is to follow the label instructions exactly. Let surfaces dry before allowing your dog to walk on the cleaned floor and rinse the cleaning agents as recommended to keep your home clean and your dog safe.
Most of this information can be found on ehow.com. Now lets get out the mop, bucket, and gloves and tackle spring head on.
Need more information, check out these helpful links:
Homemade Pet Safe Floor Cleaners
Dangers to Dogs From Floor Cleaners