If you have a dog, it is always a good idea to have your carpets professionally cleaned once or twice a year in order to remove hair, pet dander, and oils. However, if you are on a tight budget or are unable to find a suitable carpet cleaning company near you, DIY carpet cleaning is a suitable alternative. You will, however, want to follow these tips.
1. Vacuum and pre-treat before you shampoo.
Before you shampoo your carpet, make sure you give it a good, thorough vacuuming. Use the carpet brush on your vacuum as this will reach deeper down between the fibers to remove the dog hair. Vacuuming will suck up more of the dog hair so that it does not block your carpet shampooer and keep the machine from extracting water properly. Also, pre-treat any stained areas with a good carpet stain remover. This way, you won't have to expel so much water on these areas with the shampooer, and they won't take as long to dry.
2. Make sure your water is hot.
It's always important to shampoo your carpet with hot water, but even more so when you have a dog. Hot water is simply better at dissolving and removing any odorous skin oils that your dog has left behind. Put hot tap water into the shampooer, and make sure you wait the recommended time — usually 20 minutes — for the water to heat up inside the shampooer before you use it.
3. Use a detergent made for households with pets.
Look for a shampoo that is specifically advertised as being good for homes with pets. There are two reasons for this. First, such shampoos are usually better formulated to remove hair and pet odors. Second, these shampoos are pet-safe, so you don't have to be worried if your silly dog decides to lick the carpet after you've shampooed it.
4. Keep your dog off the carpet until it is dry.
Do your best to keep your dog from walking over the freshly shampooed carpet until the carpet is completely dry. The damp carpet fibers will cling to your dog's hair and dander, rendering the carpet dirty again. Once the carpet is dry, this debris will stay on the surface. If you don't have a good way to lock your dog out of the freshly shampooed room for a day, see if a friend can dog-sit.
Keeping carpets clean takes some effort when you're a dog owner, but with the tips above, you can do it.
For more information or help, contact a local carpet cleaning service.