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Pet-Related-Spring-Cleaning-Chores

Thinking about doing some spring cleaning this year? Don’t forget your pet(s)! Check out these 14 pet-related spring cleaning chores for pet owners, along with plenty of in-depth tips and how-to instructions, and give your household pets a little springtime TLC.

In this post…

This post covers 14 different spring cleaning chores that focus on your pet, their belongings, health, safety, grooming needs, and areas where they may impact your home. We also provide plenty of in-depth tips and how-to tutorials for some tasks, as well as other types of information to help you out.

  • Pet Grooming
  • Scheduling
  • Pet safety & health
  • Tips and steps on cleaning, managing and organizing pet supplies, food, and tools
  • Quality time
  • Pet-related cleaning chores and tips
  • Conclusion

Pet-Related Spring Cleaning Chores

pet-spring-cleaning-chores-sleeping cat

You can do these pet-related spring cleaning chores at whatever pace you wish. They can also be broken up and done over time, while some people may prefer to do a few all at once.

We recommend bookmarking this page so you can come back later and pick up where you left off.


  • Break down these tips and steps and move at whatever pace suits your preference and schedule.
  • Spring cleaning isn’t just for a single month or even week but the entire spring season. You can even do these tasks throughout the year if you need to.
  • You can expand or collapse the 14 spring cleaning pet-related chores to read more or less information.
  • Please consult with your vet if you have questions and before doing anything you’re uncofmortable with or unsure about.

Tips to get you started.

expand-and-contact-accordion

We’ve included helpful tips and information below that we thought you might find useful. Some tasks are kept short and sweet, while other points might be expanded upon in another post.


We also realize that each reader is different. So we’ve made it possible for you to expand each step, using the white arrow to the right of each task if you wish to read a little more information. You can collapse the tasks by clicking the same arrow again if you want to see less.

Ask your vet.

While I have some experience as a fellow pet owner and former vet receptionist and as a part-time groomer (many moons ago), the advice, tips, and suggestions within this post are not considered professional.

Always consult a veterinary doctor or local groomer if you have any questions or health concerns regarding your pet or before performing any of the steps below if you’re uncertain. And always use pet-friendly and safe practices on your pet, including any shampoos or conditioners.

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1. Wash your pet’s bowls and feeders.

Dog food dish that says food

Take a little time to make sure that your pet’s bowls or feeding equipment are thoroughly washed. You can do this by hand and using mild soap or by putting it in your dishwasher. This should also include any outside bowls.

  • Food and water dishes
  • Automatic feeders
  • Cage-related feeders
  • Outdoor drinking and food bowls
  • Water fountain drinking pet bowls

Helpful Habit: Rinse and Repeat

Even beyond these annual pet spring cleaning tasks, your pet’s food and water bowls and feeders should be regularly cleaned at least once a week, if not more. This includes water dishes and feeders. Washing pet bowls can help prevent bacteria issues as well as algae or mold growth.

Besides, it’s an easy, free, and kind way to show your pets you care, and it can be a lot healthier for them as well.

Tip

Set a reminder for yourself to clean out your pet’s bowl at least once or twice a week, if not more. This is particularly useful if you tend to forget to do it. You can also turn it into a habit by stacking it on top of another one you do already: filling up their bowls with food and water.


2. Groom your pet or have them groomed professionally.

cat-in-the-hat-shower-cap

Grooming your pet consistently can be highly important for your health and sometimes even your peace of mind.

If you’d rather not do the job yourself, consider hiring a professional, including ones who are mobile and are willing to come to you. You can find great groomers by checking out customer reviews at places such as Yelp, asking your vet, having it done at your vets, and going by word of mouth.

Please do not use human shampoo, household soap, or essential oils on your pet since they may be unsafe or even toxic. Stick to pet-formulated products (our top pick that works and smells great, new tab).


Typical Grooming Tasks

  • Trim Nails
  • Brush
  • Clean the ears
  • Have teeth cleaned or brush them
  • Groom or trim fur (optional)
  • Bathe them with pet-friendly shampoos and conditioners, such as our favorite brand here.

Oral Care Tips

Dog-getting-its-teeth-brushed

It’s crucial to make sure you brush your pet’s teeth several times a week, if not daily, treating them as your own. This is more so the case for breeds prone to dental diseases, like Corgis (something I learned the hard way and many dollars later).

Your pet’s teeth should be brushed at least twice a day, using a pet-friendly toothbrush and toothpaste, with three times a week being the minimum. Some chew treats and dental aids, such as Plaque Off, can also help maintain their oral health.

Set reminders for yourself to stay on top of your pet’s dental care, particularly if you and your pet are new to the experience and/or tend to forget. You can also start gradually to allow both of you to grow used to it and then build up in frequency as time passes.

Pet Oral Care Breakdown

  • Make sure to praise them…a lot
  • Reward with the most epic cuddlefest or playtime…ever, each time
  • Use a pet-friendly toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Consistency is key
  • Pay attention to the gums
  • Aim to do it during low-energy moments in the day (i.e., early morning, after playing or eating)
  • Stay calm and don’t force it
  • Experiment with different toothpaste flavors and style brushes until you find the right match

Grooming is also beneficial prevention.

Grooming your pet isn’t just an act of love, necessity, or kind gesture. It can also help reduce your cleaning efforts and time around the home—and not just as your pet-related spring cleaning but year-round.

This is why we usually recommend taking care of your pet’s needs before cleaning your home and keeping up with it consistently, like brushing them before you vacuum or dust and doing so at least once a week.

You can also safeguard your home by reducing allergens and preventing possible damage, such as the floor from overly long nails. Above all, your home will smell a heckuva lot better in the long run, too, and may also stay cleaner for longer.



3. Clean your pet’s bedding and blankets.

Spring cleaning Digby's bed
Neat-ish Chief Editor, Digby.

You can show a little love to both your pet and household by cleaning your pet’s bedding and condos. Doing so can help reduce household odors and reduce the chances of other factors, such as fleas and dust mites.

Washing your pet’s bed.

How to go about cleaning your animal’s bedding can vary on the type and material, not to mention how dirty it might be. Some bed types have removable covers or can be thrown entirely into the washer, while other styles may need to be spot treated or cleaned with an upholstery cleaner.

The best rule of thumb is to follow the care instructions that came on the bed, which you’ll usually see a tag of on the bed itself. If the instructions have been removed or lost, you can try some of the following steps.


Common pet bed cleaning methods:

  1. Vacuum the bed before cleaning it.
  2. Wash the bed doing one of the following:
    1. If possible, throw the bed in the washer, remove the cover, and throw it in the washing machine and treat per the bed’s care instructions.
    2. Shake out the insert well outside if it’s not also washable.
    3. Spot treat the bed to remove any stains using an upholstery-type cleaner or soap, water, and a cleaning cloth.
    4. Use a spot upholstery or carpet cleaner with upholstery attachments on more durable beds, such as large dog beds, that look more like a couch than a pillow, assuming it can handle it. Don’t oversaturate the piece or use too much soap, and make sure to rinse with water only. Do at your own risk.
  3. Allow to air dry completely in a well-ventilated area, particularly if you washed the entire bed.

Other pet bedding tips:

  • Avoid using any laundry or cleaning products, perfumes, or fragrances since animals have far more sensitive noses than we do.
  • Try to clean your pet’s bed, particularly dog beds, every quarter or at least twice a year.
  • Aim to get washable pet bedding whenever possible, or at least one with a removable cover or that can be easily wiped clean. The material should be durable as well as washable so that it can last both your animals as well as your washing machine.
  • You can learn more about preventing or eliminating dust mites in our 14 Easy Tips on How to Reduce and Prevent Dust Mites post (new tab).
  • When selecting a bed, it’s also good to make sure that it’s durable, waterproof, and big enough for your animal. Therefore, you may want to measure your animal before purchasing anything, which most bed listings should show instructions for online.

4. Deep clean your pet’s area.

Spend-some-extra-time-interacting-with-your-pet-this-Spring

It’s a good idea to keep up on cleaning your pet’s areas somewhat consistently, particularly since they can be challenging to clean if left alone for too long. This can include anything from the litterbox and litterbox area, dog runs, kennels, feeding zones, bird or small animal cages, as well as aquariums and terrariums.


Common pet places to deep clean:

  • Dog runs and kennels
  • Cat houses, posts, and trees
  • Sleeping and feeding stations
  • Litter boxes and litter box areas
  • Bird and small critter cages
  • Aquariums and terrariums

Things such as pet houses and cat trees or scratching posts can be shaken and/or vacuumed out in most cases. However, you may also need to wipe them clean since animals, such as cats, love to mark their happy zones.

Other items and areas, such as cat boxes and dog runs, may need a more thorough cleaning and should be done consistently so that things remain easier to manage and clean. Cages and terrariums should be dealt with accordingly and using safe products for the animal in mind.

Some areas may also require unique products, such as enzyme-based options and odor eliminators, to help combat common pet smells, stains, and other concerns. For instance, while it may not fight stains, this product by Zero Odor is one of our favorites for banishing odors and without the perfumed- stench of some air fresheners.

5. Inspect, declutter, and clean any pet toys.

Digby the Corgi staring at a Chuckit dog toy
Digby the Corgi staring at his Precious, the Chuckit dog toy

Try to make an effort to go through your pet’s toys as you spring clean and throughout the year.

  • Discard or repair any toys that are damaged and might pose a risk to your pet or children.
  • Clean any toys you want to keep and try to clean them every quarter or so, minimum.
  • Get your pet their own pet toy bin or basket to keep their toys. You can even train them to

Declutter, discard, and repair.

Look for and discard any toys that have been destroyed or might be a danger to your pet or children within the home. You can also try to repair some things, such as plush toys that need to be resewn back to health.

Wash the washable.

Try to wash any toys that can be washed. For instance, rubber or silicone toys can typically be washed by hand or in the clothes washer. You can also try to ash them in the dishwasher if you’re one of those brave and fearless souls.

The same can be said for cloth or fabric-based toys that don’t have any electronic parts inside them. Items like plush toys and ropes can usually be washed by hand or in the washing machine and tumble or air-dried. Unwashable items can perhaps be spot cleaned.

However, always check with the care instructions by the toy manufacturer and make sure that there isn’t any stuffing or filler that’s likely to come out once you start washing the toy.


Got guilt? Bribery and shadiness sometimes helps.

Digby-Neatish-Spring-Cleaning-Dog-Toys
Digby on his 3rd or 4th cloned version of Lyle the Crocodile (a.k.a Latest Flavor of the Month. Last month’s was Kylo Ren, who currently needs a medic, and other Star Wars crew).

Feel guilty about tossing your pet’s favorite or long-running toys? Try to have a new one or duplicate on hand.

That way, you’ll likely feel less guilt or shame and won’t be so moved by their highly skilled look of disbelief and utter disappointment when Fluffy goes in the bin. You’ll go from treacherous and villainous Zero to Hero in a blink. So long, Fluffster. It’s been real!

You can also discard items when they’re not looking, like when they’re off galivanting with their new squeeze and completely forgetting their OG pal. That’s alright, cos Fluff’s retiring with all plush bunnies.

So many toys you didn’t know what to do?

No worries—all that bribery and spoiling had to catch up with you at some point! Fortunately, your pet can get all posh and sophisticated by having their very own toy bin.

Toy bins for pets can be great as an organizing solution as it keeps toys in their own area and your house looking less cluttered. They can even look cute, and your pet will love seeing what’s inside their basket and getting something out.

And, if you’re lazy like I can sometimes be, you can even teach them to put away their toys, saving you the trouble of picking up their crime scene every day.

Just make sure that it’s the appropriate height for your pet.

Helpful Habit: Aim for quarterly toy baths.

Try to buy washable pet items. It can also be beneficial to get in the habit of washing your pet toys consistently, such as every quarter or during seasonal cleaning. This can help keep toys clean, and you’ll likely experience fewer household odors as well.

You can set reminders on your devices or even plan toy baths alongside your animal’s official bath and spa day.

6. Tidy your pet’s food storage area or pantry.

Ever so often, it’s good to clean up where you keep your pet’s food, especially if you tend to stock up. Sometimes food can fall as we’re retrieving it and can even be a magnet for insects and rodents. Items can also expire without us noticing.

This is also an excellent time to ensure that your products, such as canned food and treats, are appropriately rotated, with older items up front and newer cans toward the back.

Steps to organize your pet pantry:

  • Organize and clean up any product, going by the date.
  • Discard any expired or unwanted products.
  • Consider putting stored food in a container to keep it safe from critters and the elements and keep things fresh.
  • Clean the shelves and/or floor near their food.

To avoid issues like pests, dirt, and dust from getting into your food, and to keep things fresh, you can also opt to use containers to store large or small bags of food. We love this rolling container in our garage, which holds up to 55 quarts or more of dry food, depending on the size you get.

8. Check leashes, harnesses, and collars for any tears or other concerns.

Check-your-pets-collars-and-leashes

Things such as harnesses, leashes, and collars can go through a lot of wear and tear over time. As a result, they may be at risk for breaking apart, even during the worst times and when you need them to work the most.

Because of this, it’s a good idea to inspect your pet’s collar, leash, or harnesses every now and then to ensure that they’re in good condition and not likely to break on you or your pet any time soon. This can be done by checking any plastic connections and buckles and the woven material of the item itself.


What to look for:

  • Inspect harnesses, collars, and leashes to make sure they’re well intact and not likely to break anytime soon.
  • Check that the tags are still attached and up to date.
  • Ensure that the item fits properly and isn’t too loose or tight.
  • Look for worn points near any connector pieces, such as the fabric or woven material attached to the collar’s buckle, as this can be a weak point.
  • Make sure the connecting pieces lock firmly together and aren’t too easy or too difficult to disconnect or unbuckle.
  • Don’t forget to check other security points, such as gate latches and any travel harnesses or barriers.
  • Make sure the type of restraint you’re using is safe and comfortable for the pet. For instance, some behaviors, sizes, or breeds (like corgis) tend to do better with a padded harness vs. leash. This video discusses things to consider (new tab).

13. Consider carpet and upholstery cleaning.

Carpet-Cleaning-Spring-Cleaning-Pets

Regardless if you prefer to spot clean, DIY it, or hire a professional, it’s a good idea to make sure you treat your carpet, rugs, and furniture to a good deep cleaning ever so often, if not twice a year or every quarter—especially if you have pets.

Like our clothes, household soft surfaces and fabrics can hold a lot of dirt, bacteria, debris, fur, dead skin cells, body fluids, food, and odors. #IWasHungryButNowImNot. These items can also be a safe space and vacation hot spot for things such as fleas, ticks, and even dust mites.

via Giphy

Most pet owners are well aware of what our pets can add to the mix, let alone what humans track in from the outside world with just their shoes on inside the house. And if household odors are a concern, carpet and upholstery cleaning is one sure-fire way to eliminate many odors, all while giving you better peace of mind.


Quick carpet and upholstery cleaning tips:

  • Avoid oversaturating since this may cause long drying times and mold issues.
  • Spot treat with the appropriate cleaners rather than going crazy with the machine when dealing with stains.
  • As with washing your laundry, use minimal soap so that it’s easier to rinse and won’t cause stiffness in the material’s fibers.
  • Opt for machines with good agitation, suction, and maneuverability, and make sure the type you choose is the right one for your needs (i.e., spot cleaner vs. full-sized unit).
  • Always thoroughly vacuum whatever you’ll be cleaning first.
  • Try to do a rinse pass with water only, followed by several dry/suction-only passes to ensure that the soap is clear and the water is picked back up.

Worried about dust mites? Check out 14 Easy Tips to Reduce and Prevent Dust Mites next (new tab).

Animals can require so

14. Make more time to spend time with your best friend.

Animals have social requirements just like humans do. And because we humans often get distracted, busy, or have a tendency to forget things, it’s good to set time aside to make sure that your pet is getting the social interaction andexercise that it needs.

Activites to do with your pet(s):

  • Take them to the park, lake, or beach.
  • Get them a cool, new toy.
  • Play with them out in the yard.
  • Stay indoors and play.
  • Have a cuddlefest.
  • Give them a massage.
  • Go for a walk.
  • Take them out with you and your friends.
  • Get them professionally trained and go with them.

Before taking them outside:

  • Mind their feet on hot asphalt and other hot or rough surfaces
  • Pay attention to their needs: make sure they have water and stop if they look tired or out of breath.
  • Mind the weather, the activity in mind, and the breed: always consider the temperature when you take your pet out into the great outdoors, and always think about how they might or may not suit the activity in mind.
  • Know their limits: Not all breeds can handle the same thing, such as a corgi, pug, arthritic GSD, or chihuahua not being the best fit for a jogger or going alongside a bike.
  • Pay attention to their mood and body language.
  • Always have water and something for them to drink out of with you.
  • Be mindful of your surroundings
  • Keep them on a leash when you’re supposed to, and if they’re not adequately trained, checking for their mood around other people or animals and any signs of discomfort.
  • Make sure they’re vaccinated.

Does your pet’s fur tend to overtake your home?
Learn how to survive the next Furpocalypse with these
11 Easy Tips now How to Control Pet Fur At Home
once you’re done here! (new tab)

Conclusion

While it’s essential to clean and maintain your home, it’s equally important to include pet spring cleaning chores as well. Not only will doing some of the tasks on this 14 pet-related spring cleaning checklist be beneficial for your pet and your overall peace of mind, but it will also make spring cleaning your home easier—especially if you see to your pet’s needs, such as grooming, beforehand by doing some of the following:

In this post, we covered:

  • Trim Nails
  • Brush
  • Clean the ears
  • Have teeth cleaned and make sure to brush them at least weekly, if not several times a week or daily
  • Groom or trim fur (optional)
  • Bathe them with pet-friendly shampoos and conditioners, such as our favorite brand here.
  • Clean up stains and odors from soft surfaces such as couches and carpeting.
  • Schedule exams and vaccination appointments.
  • Clean their toys and bedding
  • Organize and tidy up their area, supplies, food, treats, etc.
  • Create or purchase pet-related emergency evacuation and first aid kits

What’s your favorite pet-related activity, and what’s your pet’s favorite item or space around the home? Let us know in the comments! 🐶🐱


Ready for more spring cleaning?
Give our 16 Important and Often Missed Spring Cleaning Chores a try for those critical house maintenance checklist items you might have forgotten about.


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