How to Remove Pet Hair From Clothes, Couches, Carpets and More
Is Fido and Fluffy's fur all over your home? Get the tips and tools you need to conquer pet hair on your linens, floors, window treatments—everywhere!
While pets bring joy and companionship to our lives, their furry coats can wreak havoc on our homes and our bodies. For one thing, pet hair—or more typically, the dried skin and saliva that it carries—is a common trigger for allergies. In fact, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, pet allergies affect 10 to 20 percent of the world’s population. As well, pet hair tends to accumulate quickly, making it challenging to maintain a clean and tidy home. It also traps odors and emits stubborn scents that may be difficult to eliminate without professional cleaning. Here, we’ve rounded up the best tips and tricks for eliminating pet hair from a variety of surfaces so you can restore cleanliness (and sanity) to your home environment.
After napping on the couch, dogs and cats can leave behind pesky piles of hair, and sometimes vacuuming alone just won’t cut it. Instead, reach for a clean, dry squeegee and run it across the couch to loosen the hair. After that, you should be able to vacuum it up with ease!
Even the best vacuums won’t pick up pet hair that’s embedded in your carpet. Tackle this problem by mixing 1 part fabric softener to 3 parts water in a spray bottle and lightly misting the carpet, then let it dry completely. The fabric softener will loosen up the hair deep inside the carpet, making it easier for the vacuum to pick up. (It also gives your carpet a fresh scent!)
If your cats enjoy batting about hair ties, remote controls, and other coffee table regulars, they probably shed their fur all over the wooden surface. Clean the mess by swiping a dryer sheet over the table, which will collect hair and eliminate odor to boot.
Dogs love staring out the window at passersby, which typically results in your curtains being covered by fur. To remove the fur, take a clean, dry sponge and rub it all over the curtain. The fur should stick to the sponge, which you can throw out after use.
If your dog skids across the hardwood floor to chase a ball, you’re probably familiar with the trail of hair it leaves behind. Use a rubber broom like the highly rated GLOYY broom-and-squeegee combo to round up the hairballs; its rubber bristles are effective at picking up even the tiniest strands.
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A clean squeegee is the best tool for removing pet hair from the fibers in your rug. Just work the squeegee back and forth to loosen the pet hair. If you don’t have a long-handled or telescoping squeegee handy, save yourself from having to get down on your hands and knees by attaching your squeegee to a broom handle.
Most homeowners don’t have to pay too much attention to their baseboards, but those who share their house with pets don’t have this luxury. Pet hair can rapidly build up on baseboards and other molding, making them appear dingy and dull. Simply sweep a dryer sheet over the surface to remove hair and brighten up the baseboards. To make the job easier, attach the dryer sheet to the bottom of a Swiffer-type mop.
RELATED: How to Clean Baseboards
Tired of pulling fur-covered clothing out of the washing machine? A buildup of pet hair in the appliance could be the culprit. Start by leaving the washer door open to let it dry out completely. When the machine is dry, vacuum out the drum using a brush attachment, then remove the drain pump filter (following the manufacturer’s instructions) and clear out any clogged-up pet hair.
Even if you diligently clean your dryer’s lint screen after every load, sometimes you still wind up with clothes that come out of the dryer caked in dog fur. When that happens, try cleaning out the dryer itself by wiping the drum with a slightly damp rubber glove to remove fur buildup.
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Pet hair sticks out like a sore thumb on dark-colored jackets. While lint rollers certainly work for a quick fur pickup, for a more thorough cleaning, dampen a pair of rubber gloves and stroke the coat with them in a downward motion.
Bedding (both yours and your furry friends’) can attract loads of stubborn pet hair. To clean it, start by moving a lint roller—a great pet hair remover for laundry and linens—back and forth over the bedding to pick up stray hair and fur. (If you opt for the well-reviewed ChomChom roller, the top pick in our guide to the best pet hair removers, fur and fuzz will be tidily trapped in its built-in receptacle.) When you’re done, remove the bedding and shake it out outside to get rid of any remaining hair. Finally, toss the bedding in the wash—if you’re washing comforters, shams, or bed skirts, check the care label first: You don’t want to ruin your bedding in your fur-removing frenzy. Use dryer sheets or balls in the dryer to help collect any remaining hair.
As with curtains, Fido’s fur can accumulate on your blinds. To remove it, wipe the blinds gently with a microfiber cloth. For more stubborn hair, use a piece of tape to roll away any remaining strands. Additionally, you can dampen the microfiber cloth with water or a pet-safe cleaning solution and wipe down slats individually.
Yes, pet hair can also pile up in drains! If left unattended, the accumulated hair can lead to clogs and drainage issues, so you’ll want to address it as soon as you notice it. To remove pet hair from drains, put on a pair of rubber gloves, like the Mr. Clean latex gloves, and manually pull out any hair. Then, pour 1 cup of baking soda down the drain and follow up with 1 cup of vinegar. Allow it to sit for a few minutes, then flush the drain with hot water. For stubborn clogs, use a drain snake to dislodge the hair.
Our furry companions can greatly impact air quality in the home. Their hair attracts dust and other particles and then finds its way into the air around you, which can trigger allergies and lead to respiratory discomfort. To remove pet hair from the air, use an air purifier with a HEPA filter, which can capture tiny hair particles. To reduce the amount of airborne hair in your home, it’s also a good idea to keep your pet clean and well groomed. Vacuum and dust surfaces regularly, too, including furniture and curtains.
Pet hair accumulates in the crevices of electronic devices, such as keyboards, game consoles, and speakers. To get rid of it, power off the device and use a compressed gas duster like Dust-Off to blow away loose hair from the crevices. You can gently clean the surface with a soft-bristle brush or use a dry microfiber cloth to wipe away any remaining hair. Be careful not to apply excessive pressure or use liquids, as they can damage the electronics.