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Tips on how to remove pet hair

how to remove pet hair
How to remove pet hairAleksandarNakic - Getty Images

More than half of UK households own a pet, and while we all love our four-legged friends, cleaning up after them isn't exactly the best thing about being an animal lover.

Unless you have a snake, Sphynx cat or goldfish, pet hair is probably something you have to contend with as a pet owner. Shedding is healthy and natural - but no one wants fur all over their clothes, furniture and carpet, so here's how you can clean it up.

Start with your pet

When your pet sheds their coat, this allows them to get rid of their old damaged hair and maintain a healthy uppercoat.

You can combat excessive shedding by brushing your pet regularly - plus, what better way to show them some love!

Your vet or groomer will let you know the best way to reduce shedding if it’s hard to manage, or you have a heavy-shedding breed of dog or cat, e.g. Labrador Retriever, German Shepherd, Chartreux, Ragdoll, Russian Blue.

how to remove pet hair
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Choose pet-friendly fabrics

Fabrics with a nap — like velvet, corduroy, velour and loose knits — will attract and gather pet hair more than others. And natural fibres, including cotton and wool, will attract more hair than synthetics.

However, the static produced by some synthetic fabrics can also attract pet hair, making it difficult to remove. Luckily, hair will slip right off satin, leather and other shiny materials.

Vacuum

If you let your pets on the sofa or they have a favourite armchair, be sure to vacuum these regularly using the upholstery tool. We rate the Shark Anti-Hair Wrap Vacuum as it lifts pet hair easily. Invest in an anti-static spray to apply after the surface has been cleaned and use a lint roller, too.

Use the dryer

If washable clothing or bedding is covered in pet hair, we’d recommend running it through the tumble dryer for couple of minutes on the cool setting. The action of the drum will actually loosen a lot of the hair, pulling it into the filter. However, you will need to clean the filter out straight away after use.

GHI Tip: A dryer sheet is a great tool that helps to reduce static and stop pet hair clinging to fabrics.

how to remove pet hair
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Use rubber gloves

You’ve probably got a pair of rubber gloves lying about somewhere, and they can be really handy for removing pet hair. Gently wet the gloves and brush them over the surface of the fabric. They’ll create static which, coupled with the textured surface of the glove, will lift pet hair with ease.

Clean the gloves by plunging them in hot water and the hair will simply come away. Repeat as necessary.

Deal with bedding

Take care not to wash pet bedding in the washing machine until after you've removed any loose pet hair. This is because it can contribute to blockages and drainage issues. Otherwise, you will need to learn how to clean your washing machine. A lint roller or the rubber glove trick we’ve just mentioned can help lift hairs away before laundry day.

Wash pet bedding according to the care label, on the highest temperature it allows. Some pet beds feature removable covers, while others can be thrown into the washing machine whole. Use a pet-safe detergent such as Pro-Kleen Pet Bedding Laundry Washing Detergent. Remember to remove any loose pet hairs from clothing before you wash these too.

Use a damp duster or mop

A damp duster works wonders anywhere pet hair has gathered. Run it along skirting boards and walls, and the duster will pick up the hair as you go. For flooring, use a damp mop to pick up hair.

how to remove pet hair
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Invest in an air purifier

An air purifier is a fantastic investment if you’ve got pets running around the house. For one, the carbon layer featured as part of the filter can help deodorise the space. And two, the HEPA filter can catch pet hair and dander, reducing its presence on your carpets and furniture.

Of course, an air purifier won’t solve your pet hair problems, but it can help you stay on top of them and contribute to an allergy-free home in the process.

Cover up

If you don’t want to keep removing hair from your sofa, armchair, or duvet, cover them with blankets for your pet to sit on.

Make your own anti-static spray

A mix of water and fabric conditioner makes a quick and easy anti-static spray. Use this to stop hairs clinging to furniture with a quick spray, then wipe it off.

Clothes troubleshooting

Even the cheapest of lint rollers are a great way to remove pet hair from clothing, so stock up. Alternatively, use tape wrapped around your hand, sticky-side up, and brush down the surface of the clothing.

Give clothing a spritz with an anti-static spray when you put them on to make it easier to remove pet hair with a brush or lint roller.

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