Spring Cleaning: Pet Deodorizing!

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Instead of a classic doggy “pupdate”, I wanted to share some pet deodorizing secrets I’ve recently uncovered!  If your dogs are anything like mine, they enjoy a nice snooze on the couch or a snuggle in our bed, which requires more than laundry.  The downside of having pets is that they can completely take over your home – which isn’t the most pleasant thing for guests!  Luckily, I’ve found a few tricks that will help remedy the situation.

Callie enjoying the new doggy pool!

Callie enjoying the new doggy pool!

  • Buy a doggy bed with a removable cover for easy cleaning.  Washing the cover and any blankets your dog may use on a monthly or biweekly basis is even more important than washing your own sheets when it comes to making your bedroom smell fresh!
  • “Clean” your mattress with an easy solution = baking soda and essential oil.  Mix 1 cup baking soda with 5-10 drops of your favorite, calming essential oil (lavender, chamomile, and ylang ylang are great options)!  Sprinkle on your bare mattress and let rest for 30-45 minutes.  Then, vacuum up with your upholstery attachment.  You’ll notice a fresh, relaxing scent take over the room!  This trick will also work on the bare surface of your doggy beds.
  • Pillows need some loving too!  Wash your pillows (two at a time) on the gentle cycle with warm water.  Then, dry on medium heat for about 25 minutes with a few clean tennis balls in the dryer.  They’ll smell fresh and fluffed with the help from the balls! (NOTE! Do not wash foam pillows!)  Using pillow covers under the pillow cases can help keep them fresher for a longer period of time.
  • Secret Dog Scent Source = their TOYS.  Our dogs have a lot of stuffed animals that can carry a doggy-scent that isn’t so pleasant.  Washing their toys once a month can keep their toy basket smelling fresh (not with other laundry!).

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  • Groom your pups!  Giving your doggies a bath on a monthly basis will keep them smelling fresh, help with shedding, and make their fur soft and lovable.  We use gentle oatmeal shampoo for our pups, since goldens can get dry skin from too much bathing.
  • Candles are a pet-owners best friend!  I’m a fan of fresh scents like lemon + herbs, amber, and lavender.  I’ve found that Target has the best candles for a reasonable price – check out the burn time on the bottom of the candles to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth!  Make sure you’re not just “masking” the pet odors – try all the other tips first, and then reward your spring cleaning with a new candle!

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  • Lastly, on a regular basis zoom around a vacuum and pay attention to nooks and crannies (especially in the cracks of couches!).  I have this vacuum and absolutely love it.  Make sure to clean out the squishy foam filter every month to keep it smelling fresh!  We also use this carpet cleaner about 4 times a year to help with the dirt and grime that the vacuum can’t get.  Check out Costco for deals on both of these items throughout the year!

Well, not food related in the least.  But, I hope I’ve helped with some tricks of the trade to my fellow pet owners out there!  Good luck with your Spring Cleaning!

Gino “Pup-date”: 5 months

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If you’ve been following me on social media at ALL, you’ve probably noticed that we got a little Golden Retriever monster, Gino!  I know this is a cooking blog, but I like to fill everyone in on my life once in a while.  A lot of my readers are family and friends from all over the country (Hi, everyone!) and this is a great way to keep in touch with all of them.

Additionally, a lot of twenty-somethings (aka, all of my friends) decide to get a dog.  It’s a great way to see if you’re responsible enough to call yourself an adult – trust me.  It’s been a challenge, but I want to share some things that our dogs love so it saves you all some research down the road!

And for all my followers with older furry friends, we’ve got a 7-year-old Goldendoodle,  Callie!  She’s loving her new friend, but takes advantage of her size by jumping on the bed and escaping Gino’s teeth every once in a while.  Here are some doggy-duds we’ve been digging.  Click the links to find them online!

  • Himalayan Dog Chew:  I was a big fan of these because they’re completely digestible, last forever, and are stain-free (yay clean carpets!).  When I’m bustling around the house (one room apartment), I like to give Gino one of these to keep him busy forever.  We take them away when they get really small, but they’ve lasted about 3 weeks a piece!
  • Crazy Dog Training Treats:  When you’re shelling out training treats like candy, you don’t want to spend big bucks on them.  For under 3 dollars, these are a steal.  The dogs love them, and so far, they’ve worked!  Gino can officially “sit” at command.  The chicken flavor is their favorite!

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  • KONG Air Dog Squeakair Tennis Balls: Squeaking + Puppy = happy dog.  I want Gino to become a big fan of fetching the tennis ball because it’s a GREAT way to tire out a dog!  He’s been romping around the house after these squeaky balls.  They’re a little more pricy than plain ol’ tennis balls, but they are durable against his sharp teeth and have the extra sound effects!
  • KONG Tugger Knots Moose Toy: Two rope pulls, squeaky on the inside, and has tough chewing surfaces.  The two dogs love to tug this back and forth and Gino loves to chew on the tough ropes when he’s teething.  It’s become one of his favorite toys!

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  • Petsafe Easy Walk Dog Harness: I CANNOT tell you how great this harness has been.  When you’ve got one 60-lb dog and another one rapidly growing, it’s crucial to be able to control them on a walk.  Callie’s pulling immediately stopped with this front-attaching harness.  Gino is almost big enough to both need one and be able to fit in one!  Callie wears a large (I’d recommend that size for all big dogs).  A MUST-HAVE for anyone walking their giant pooches!
  • Folding Metal Dog Crate: We bit the bullet and got this durable, big dog crate.  It’ll be big enough for Gino until he’s full grown and it’s got a side door so it can hide and not take up too much space.  With a comfy dog bed inside and a big sheet covering the top and sides, it’s his little cave!  You’d be crazy to get a puppy without a crate, and this has become a crucial purchase!

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  • Dog Waste Bags with Dispenser and Leash Clip:  When your dog does his business 5 times a day, these waste bags are a fantastic way to keep the neighbors happy.  The leash clip is great for long walks, and they sell them in giant packs on Amazon so you never run out!
  • Elevated Dog Feeder:  Both Callie and Gino have their own dog feeder so they don’t get greedy and steal each other’s food.  The elevated feeders are nice because they eliminate the mess you’ll get when bowls are knocked over.  And when he gets big, it’ll be easier for him to eat out of!

Some other tricks –

  • Buy your dog beds at Homegoods!  They have a great deal on little toys and dog beds.  DON’T fall for the crazy prices at PetCo!
  • Speaking of PetCo and PetSmart – check out their website before you go shopping.  We’ve found coupons that you can print out and save some bucks.
  • If you’ve got a CostCo membership, Kirkland has great dog food!  We’ve been getting Callie’s food there for eternity, and now Gino uses the puppy food.  You’ll save some dollars from the normal pet store.

If you’re thinking about a puppy or are tackling one already, try out some of these great finds!  They’ve been lifesavers over the past month.  Stay tuned for more Gino pup-dates and great pictures!

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