Dog Hanging out

We all want to keep a clean house but not at the expense of our health or our dog’s health.  Many household cleaning products are filled with harsh and potentially harmful chemicals and toxins.  Not only can touching or breathing in the harsh chemicals lead to respiratory problems and increase your risk of cancer but if a dog (or human) ingests them, they could become very ill or even die.  You can explain to humans the correct way to use chemicals cleaning products, as well as the precautions that need to be made, but you cannot explain that to a dog.  For those reasons, many of your household cleaning products – yes, even the ones labeled “green”! – may be very hazardous for your dog.

When it comes to cleaning products, the more natural you can go with ingredients, the better.  Steam cleaning with a powerful steam cleaner is a great idea because it only uses water but powerful steam cleaners can clean and disinfect up to 99% of bacteria.  Additionally, common pantry items such as baking soda or white vinegar make excellent cleaning tools for a number of surfaces including countertops, floors, mirrors, sinks, and more.

If you still prefer to use cleaning products that have some chemical power there are some basic guidelines to follow to keep your dog safe, as Cesar’s Way points out, “‘Dilution is very important,’ she continues. ‘This is not a situation where a little is good and a lot is better. And we want to keep our animals out of that area until the products are dry. For instance, when you wash your floors, keep your pet out of the kitchen until the floors are dry. Then it’s OK for them to come back into the area.’ When used correctly, the residue left behind is minimal, Dr. Wismer adds. ‘But if owners are worried about residues, they can certainly clean them off with just plain water afterwards.’”

The key to choosing dog-safe cleaning products is to read the label carefully.  Beware that even products that sound really safe and environmentally friendly may actually be filled with chemicals.  Always keep your cleaning products safe in a cabinet where children and dogs cannot get to them and accidentally play with or ingest them. Look for dog-safe cleaning products in places like Petco, PetSmart, big-box stores, or consult your veterinarian for dog-safe cleaning product suggestions.