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Just in time for the holidays here are some great tips for freshening up your home! Brought to you by Tyler Evans of 

The 6 Most Effective Pet Cleanup Tips You Need to Know

Pets offer their owners plenty of love, but there’s usually a bit of mess involved, as well. From dogs who are overeager to greet you at the door to cats who can’t help but bat everything off the counter, cleaning becomes a way of life when you have furry friends. The good news is that there are effective ways to clean just about everything — including pet messes.

Keep Fur from Taking Over with Fabric Softener

You already love fabric softener for keeping your clothing soft and static-free. But the same tech that reduces static can help prevent hair from clinging to every area of your house. Run clothing and bedding through the dryer with a fabric softener sheet to remove hair before washing. Dryer sheets can also wipe hair and dander from dusty surfaces. The magic lies in the electron exchange of the molecules — the stuff on the fabric softener sheets neutralizes negative charges. In short, the important thing is that dryer sheets hold onto stray pet fluff.

Minimize Pet Dander by Filtering Your Air

If you struggle with allergies, your pet’s dander might be to blame — around 20 percent of people worldwide are allergic to cats and dogs. Fortunately, there are ways to cut down on excess dander and help ease those allergic reactions.

You can choose specialized air filters for your home heating and AC system or place air purifiers in specific rooms. Doing so helps remove pollutants in your home environment, though the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) also suggests circulating outdoor air, too.

Use Vinegar to Get Rid of Slimy Drool Spots

Vinegar is safe for use around pets and is useful for cleaning many surfaces. Whether your dog tends to leave nose prints on your windows or your cat makes a mess eating, a vinegar solution helps achieve a streak-free clean. Just remember not to let your pets sample the cleaner if you add rubbing alcohol to the formula per the Spruce’s recommendation.

You can also use vinegar to remove mildew, grease, and wax. It kills bacteria, though at lower rates than bleach, but the tradeoff is that it’s not harmful if your pets take a sip.

Hide Odors by Hiding Your Cat’s Litter Box

You already feel grossed out when your kitty tracks its litter across the house. But did you know that cats can carry harmful germs — particularly in their feces — that can make you and your family sick? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention highlights the importance of washing your hands after cleaning the cat box — plus keeping kitty litter contained.

And your cat’s litter box is offending your noise (or your guests’ noses), a hidden litter box might be the solution. There are tons of cat litter box furniture on the market that keep your kitty’s business out of sight and help cover up odors. Read reviews, recommendations, and product guides to pick the best litter box plus furniture piece for your home (and pet).

Remove Potty Messes Quickly with Simple Steps

All urine contains ammonia, bacteria, and uric acid, but it’s the uric acid that causes smells to hang around. Therefore, the key to avoiding lasting odor is proper cleaning.

First, soak up as much of the mess as you can with rags or paper towels. Then, blot with towels wetted with water only. After you get most of the urine out, apply a pet-friendly product to lift what you can’t see. Healthy Pets recommends household mixtures like one part hydrogen peroxide and two parts water, undiluted white vinegar, or baking soda. Afterward, you can blot dry (or vacuum up) the solution.

Approach Stains with the Right Products

While set-in stains can wreak havoc on your carpet, using a traditional carpet cleaner probably won’t help. That’s because specialized pet products contain enzymes to break down urine — standard carpet cleaning blends don’t. Enzyme cleaners cause chemical reactions that break down stains on a molecular level, getting rid of stains with little effort.

Cleaning a pet-friendly home doesn’t have to cost a fortune. And with these six methods, you’ll be enjoying a cleaner, fresher-smelling house in no time.