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Our five top tips to pet-proof your home

Are you thinking of welcoming a four-legged friend into your home? There’s no doubt pets hold an important place in the nation’s heart. Pet ownership in the UK is at an all-time high, with 26% of households owning a dog and 18% sharing their homes with a cat. Love them as we do – there’s no doubt that they can cause havoc around the house.

From scratched-up gardens, ruined floors, and unpleasant odours, there’s plenty of potential for chaos. But don’t despair – our five top tips will keep your home intact and smelling fresh:

1.Protect floors: Carpets can soon take on a doggy odour, as well as becoming a magnet for hairs. Wearing rubber gloves produces static that helps to pick up dog hairs missed by the vacuum cleaner. Hard floors are the easiest to keep clean. Go for tiles or vinyls that can be washed down easily. Durable floor paint will withstand claws and is easy to keep fresh. Try Everbuild Floor Paint, a heavy duty, hard-wearing paint for concrete, stone and wooden floors.

2.Washable walls: No matter how well you clean your dog’s paws after a long walk, mud has a tendency to get everywhere. Make sure you use washable paints in high traffic areas such as hallways so you can quickly clean mud-spattered walls. Use sugar soap and a decorating sponge to wipe off stains.

3.The great outdoors: If you’re bringing home a new puppy, you’ll need to make sure your garden is safe and secure. Replace any broken fence panels and patch up holes. Your fence will need to be tall enough that your dog doesn’t jump over it, and flush to the ground in case it tries to dig its way out. Sturdy pre-made wooden fence panels are a quick and easy border solution, and if pre-treated should stand the test of time.

4.Banish odours: To eliminate nasty niffs, try using bicarbonate of soda, which has absorbent properties that draw out odours. Sprinkle over carpets, leave overnight then vacuum in the morning. Cat urine can leave an unpleasant odour that lingers for days. Vinegar will neutralise the smell. Add a dash to soiled fabrics before placing in the washing machine. Nothing will stop your dog from smelling like a dog, so prevent a build-up of doggy odours by vaccuming often and opting for hard floors where possible.

5.Allergy advice: Pet dander (dead skin cells and fur) can produce allergens in vulnerable people, causing sneezing, wheezing and even asthma. Bathing dogs reduces allergen levels by up to 85% according to research, but levels rise again after three days so you’ll need to repeat frequently.

Looking for DIY and home improvement advice in the Horsham area?

Whether you’re a long-term owner or a new pet parent, we’re open six days a week for supplies to create the perfect haven for your four-legged friend or contact us for some tried and tested advice.