I don’t think that there is any argument about everyone wanting a clean house. Not only is it good to live in, but it is much better for our health too. It is also important for the health of everyone that lives in the home; including pets. As the owner of three cats, I want to make sure that my home is as green and safe as possible, for my cats and the rest of my family. Generally, though, our homes can be filled with cleaning products that ironically, make our homes more toxic. They are filled with harmful chemicals that will hurt not only us but our pets. Now, you can’t just not clean your home. When you have young children and pets, your home will need to be cleaned more than ever. So today I am going to share with you various products that we can use. They will not only clean our home, but they are natural. So they won’t be harmful to us, or importantly, our pets either.
Vinegar is a little-known secret when it comes to cleaning the house. It has a multitude of uses, for various surfaces and materials. It can be used inside the home as well as outside the home. So you need to stock up. Now, the kind of vinegar I am talking about is white vinegar. Not the malt vinegar you might put on fries or the balsamic that you’d use on a salad! You can buy it in bulk which is a great way to go. It makes it cheaper that way, as well as always guaranteeing that you have cleaner in. To use vinegar on windows, mix it up with water (around 2 pints for a quarter cup of vinegar). Put it into an empty spray bottle if you find that easier. Then scrunch up some newspaper to polish and wipe. This works on any glass, so windows, glass coffee tables or televisions, for example. Newspaper works, honestly; If you’re concerned about the ink from a newspaper, then wear some gloves when you clean.
If you want to clean floors with vinegar, then use a cup of vinegar with two gallons of warm water. It works wonders on vinyl, tiled flooring or ceramic tiling. You might get some spills in your home from your cats. They might urinate on the carpet or knock things over that could cause a problem for carpet. But the great news is that vinegar can be used on carpets too. It is great for eliminating carpet odor. Use a one to one ratio of vinegar and water. Then you just apply a little to the stain so it can soak in. Then use some paper towels or a cloth to blot the carpet dry. Keep repeating until the carpet is looking good and smelling fresh.
The smell of vinegar can be quite strong. So if you don’t want the smell to linger, then think about using something like essential oils. Lemon is a great oil to add when cleaning. It helps to de-grease, as well as make the home smell lovely.
When you’ve got a pet like a cat or a dog, then there might be a lot of hair left on the carpet and around the house. One great non-toxic way to clean is using a steamer. All it does is use water. But because it is heated, it makes a big difference. It can eliminate bacteria due to the heat. So it can be used on carpet, floors, the bathroom, and even their litterbox. It is much nicer than using harsh chemicals to eliminate bacteria.
If you find that the stray hairs are getting out of control, then you could something like a lint roller. Then you can just pick up the hairs quickly and easily, in between steam cleans. You could use a brand like SuperiorMaker, for instance.
Like vinegar, baking soda is a great cleaner at home, that has a lot of uses. So it might be worth trying out using both to clean. Then you can see what you prefer. Baking soda has less of a smell than vinegar, which is why some people prefer it. They can be used together, though. Then you’ve got the ultimate in green cleaning. Baking soda is great for cleaning bathrooms and your pet’s bed or litter box. For things like pet beds, you can use baking soda by sprinkling it on. Rub it in the fabric with a sponge. Then just rinse and dry out the fabric. This works just the same for countertops and flooring. Sprinkle, scrub, rinse and dry.
In a bathroom, baking soda is best used to clean things like limescale or soap scum. All you need to do is sprinkle it on the bathtub. Then scrub it down with a sponge or a scrubber. To make more of an impact for our bathtub, you could pour some vinegar down the drain. That will help to keep it clear and smelling fresh. It reacts with the baking soda when you rinse the bath down. The water goes down the drain and then, boom, your drain will be cleaned too.
You can make a paste with baking soda and water too. It means mixing small amounts together until it is a thick paste. Then you can use on things like carpets or shower curtains. Basically, anything that needs to be cleaned and to get rid of smells. Then you know your pet cat or dog can wander around the home, and it will be all good.
As I have mentioned above, lemon essential oil is great to use in cleaning. You can just use a regular lemon if you don’t have essential oils. The juice does work wonders too. Lemon juice, mixed with olive oil, can make a great furniture polish. Use double the amount of olive oil than lemon juice. Then apply to furniture with a cloth and rub until polished. How nice to be able to clean our homes this way? Then our children and pets that climb all over the furniture won’t be getting covered in toxic chemicals.
Cats also aren’t normally a big fan of the smell of lemon. So you could use the juice to keep pet cats away from indoor plants or plants in the garden. Any stray cats won’t go near your plants if they are sprayed with lemon.
There are plenty of other great essential oils that you can clean with. Lemon I have mentioned. One other is eucalyptus oil. It is great for removing anything stick from surfaces. So if you have any gum or jelly stuck in the carpet, on furniture or on tables, try using eucalyptus. It has been known to get ink out of fabrics too. So if you have a toddler that has drawn all over your couch, give it a try. You might get a bit of a residue. But it can just be washed off with some water and a little soap if needed. On a side note, you can also use this oil when taking off band-aids. It just helps to get rid of that stick residue.
Other antibacterial essential oils are peppermint, cinnamon, lavender, and rosemary. All of these oils could be used by themselves as a cleaner, or mixed with vinegar or water, to make them go further. They all smell divine too, right? So you could choose certain ones to use at certain times of the year. Cinnamon is perfect for the holidays, isn’t it? Then you won’t need to fill your home with toxic paraffin scented candles.
Pine is an essential oil that is already in a lot of cleaners. But if you are using the therapeutic grade version of it, then it will be even better for you. It is great for killing spores, as well as E.coli and general household germs. Plus, it smells great! It can be cleaned all over the home. But I think that it works best on wooden floors and in bathrooms, to get rid of mold. Thyme is also a great oil for green cleaning at home. You could make some homemade dish soap using it, as it is just so good. It can protect you against salmonella. So it is great for countertops and surfaces, as well as for cleaning your hands with. You can use it on your chopping boards too. I just love that oils are so safe. You can wash them on your chopping board and then prepare food on those boards. No chemicals in sight.
The great thing about essential oils is that they are completely natural. Some may need to be diluted with a carrier oil if they will touch or children or pets directly. But they are nontoxic and won’t harm our homes or us when they are used correctly.
Do you find it hard to have a clean home with pets? What are your tips for cleaning naturally?