Dog with sunglasses sitting in the driver's seat of a car

Tips for Keeping Your Car Clean with a Dog

How to Minimize Dog Hairs and Odors in Your Vehicle

Many dog parents love bringing their furry companions along wherever they go. Whether you are taking Fido to the vet or bringing your pet along for a car ride, you’ll eventually come across some dog hair and odors left behind in your car. How do you minimize this? Here’s a few tips you should try to help keep your car clean while owning a dog.

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Set a Cleaning Schedule

If you have hairs and odors in your car, it’ll only get worse over time. You should consider setting a cleaning schedule, so you make sure that your car gets cleaned on a regular basis.

Happy dog sitting inside of a car

To clean fur and dirt left behind, vacuum the seats and flooring throughout your vehicle. Make sure to be more thorough in the areas that your dog is often in.

Odors, on the other hand, will need to get washed out. Use car shampoo designed for pet stains and follow the instructions on the bottle to properly apply it. Never soak the fabric in your car as mold can form from the moisture. If cleaning the car this way doesn’t help eliminate the smell, try using baking soda. Place a bowl of baking soda inside your vehicle and leave it there overnight. For strong odors, this may take several days. A quicker way to remove odors is by mixing an equal amount of water and white vinegar together. Pour this mixture into a spray bottle and lightly spray the interior of your car. Allow the cabin to fully dry.

Ways to Prevent Large Messes

While you should always be cleaning your vehicle, especially while owning a dog, the task can feel more daunting if precautions aren’t taken to minimize the mess left behind. Luckily, there are numerous ways to help prevent large messes and save you time later. These include:

  • Designating one car to your car if you own more than one vehicle.
  • Restraining your dog to one area of the vehicle. Whether you use a harness or a crate, keeping your dog in one spot will help contain messes.
  • Using a seat cover. Hammock seat covers are fantastic for dogs that want to lay down and will help protect your carpet.
  • Placing all-weather floor mats inside your car.
  • Regularly grooming your dog. This helps keep fur out of your car.
  • Bathing your dog on a regular basis.
  • Combing your dog and rinsing its paws if you were hiking or camping.

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