My entire house is carpeted (with the exception of the kitchen and bathrooms.) The carpet in my living room, hallway, and upstairs bedrooms is off white. And it’s the original carpet, so it’s almost 40 years old. Between the home’s original owners and me, my carpets have dealt with a total of seven cats so far. Nobody who walks into my house believes me that the carpet is that old.
How I care for my carpet
I vacuum weekly, and for the first 20+ years that I’ve lived in this house, I’ve had my carpets professionally cleaned. I discontinued the professional cleanings a few years ago. Between Buckley’s heart disease, and Amber getting older, I didn’t want to stress them out by having to lock them into a bathroom for the time it would take to get the whole house cleaned. Allegra hates being locked up so much that she actually starts trying to dig her way out from under the door, and Ruby is terrified of the sound of the vacuum cleaner, so professional cleanings weren’t going to be happening any time soon at my house.Continue Reading
My entire house is carpeted (with the exception of the kitchen and bathrooms.) The carpet in my living room, hallway, and upstairs bedrooms is off white. And it’s the original carpet, so it’s about 35 years old. It has been through as many years of homeowners with cats. Between the original owners and me, my carpets have dealt with a total of seven cats so far. Nobody who walks into my house believes me that the carpet is that old.
I vacuum weekly, and for the first 20+ years that I’ve lived in this house, I’ve had my carpets professionally cleaned. But for the last few years, I discontinued the professional cleanings. Between Buckley’s heart disease, and Amber getting older, I didn’t want to stress them out by having to lock them into a bathroom for the time it would take to get the whole house cleaned. When Allegra and Ruby joined me, I thought that the time was right to have the carpet cleaned professionally again, but Allegra hates being locked up so much that she actually starts trying to dig her way out from under the door. And Ruby is terrified of the sound of the vacuum cleaner.
Many commercial cleaning products are not safe to use around cats. The chemicals in these products can be extremely toxic, and even deadly. Cats are especially susceptible since they groom themselves by licking and as a result ingest anything that comes in contact with their feet or fur.
Additionally, the chemicals in and fumes resulting from cleaning products can cause allergic reactions in cats (and humans, for that matter). Many chemical cleaning products pollute the air inside your home by off-gassing toxic fumes, or they contain antibacterial substances that are not only unnecessary, but can actually contribute to bacteria becoming more resistant to killing agents.
Thankfully, there are alternatives to these chemical products that are not only safer for your cats, but also gentler to the planet. And they’re inexpensive! Allegra was kind enough to pose with two of my go to cleaning products for this post. You’d be surprised what you can do with vinegar, baking soda, olive oil and lemon juice.Continue Reading
When was the last time you crawled around your house on your hands and knees? As strange as that may sound, you may want to give it a try sometime – because this is how your cats experience your home much of the time. Things that seem innocuous to us can present a real danger to your cat.
Protecting your cat from hazards in your home is not all that different from child-proofing a house. The following tips can protect your cat from common household hazards.Continue Reading
When it comes to cats and vacuum cleaners, there seems to be no grey zone: cats either hate them, of, if a slew of videos on YouTube is to be believed, love them. I’ve never had a cat who loved the vacuum cleaner, and with the exception of Allegra, all my cats have always been afraid of “The Monster,” as we call it at our house.
It’s not surprising that most cats dislike vacuums. They’re loud – even to us. Imagine what they sound like to far more sensitive cat ears. They move at the cat’s level, and seem to be able to go anywhere. They eat everything in their path. What’s not to be afraid of?
Feebee was terrified of the vacuum cleaner and would hide under the bed until I was done. Amber’s hiding place was the shower stall in the downstairs bathroom. Buckley was neutral about the vacuum cleaner when she was my office cat at the animal hospital and would watch it go by while sitting on my desk. Continue Reading
Today is Earth Day, and it’s a good day to remember what going green means: making conscious choices every day about protecting our environment. Recycling, buying organic, and using eco-friendly products are only some of the everyday choices that contribute to a healthier planet.
You can also help the planet by making choices for your cat that will not only benefit the planet, but will also keep your cat healthy.
Feed natural and organic food
Natural and organic pet foods use meats that are raised in sustainable, humane ways without added drugs or hormones, minimally processed, and preserved with natural substances, such as vitamins C and E. Certified-organic pet foods must meet strict USDA standards that spell out how ingredients are produced and processed, Continue Reading
Many health problems, in both cats and humans, chronic or otherwise, are caused by day-to-day exposure to toxic substances such as chemicals and other molecules that are foreign to the body. These toxins accumulate in the body over a period of time, often over many years. Research on the human side suggests that more than 75% of cancers are caused by diet and environmental factors. In addition, toxic exposure is a contributing factor to cardiovascular diseases, strokes, and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. Environmental pollutants stockpile in the body contributing to the chronic diseases.
Now consider how much smaller our cats are. It most likely takes a much smaller load of toxins for our pets to cause problems. Additionally, as cats groom themselves, it’s easy for them to ingest any environmental toxins they may have accidentally come in contact with on their fur and paws.Continue Reading
Cats are self-cleaning, as Allegra demonstrates in this photo. Unfortunately, our houses aren’t, so we have to use cleaning products to get the job done. Many commercial cleaning products are not safe to use around cats. The chemicals in these products can be extremely toxic, and even deadly. Cats are especially susceptible since they groom themselves by licking and as a result ingest anything that comes in contact with their feet or fur.
Thankfully, there are many options for cat-safe, chemical-free and green cleaning products available. I particularly like the Method and Seventh Generation lines of products.
Some of my favorite cleaners, and also the safest and least expensive, are baking soda and white distilled vinegar. Some suggestions for use are:Continue Reading
Many commercial cleaning products can be extremely toxic, and even deadly, to pets. Cats are especially susceptible since they groom themselves by licking and as a result ingest anything that comes in contact with their feet or fur.
While it’s getting easier to find natural and eco-friendly cleaning products, even in regular grocery stores, not all of these products may be safe to use around cats. In particular, stay away from products containing essential oils. Even though many manufacturers of essential oils claim that they are safe to use around cats, this is not always the case. Tea tree oil especially can be deadly to cats.
As a result, I’m always looking for “all natural” cleaners that are truly safe to use around cats. When the folks at Sea-Yu Enterprises® offered to send me a couple of their Clean+Green® cleaners to test, I was more than happy to accept.
Sea-Yu’s eco-friendly cleaning products are made from organic and biodegradable ingredients. They’re even packaged in recyclable containers. Their ingredients are labeled “cosmetics safe”, and they disclose the ingredients on their website. The only thing I didn’t like was the “proprietary blend of botanical extracts.” I understand that companies need to protect their unique formulas, but I would prefer to see a complete list of ingredients.
I tested the carpet & upholstery product on my off-white carpet, and while I didn’t have any fresh stains to test it on (and I wasn’t about to ask Allegra to create some for me especially for this product test!), I used it on some very old stains of indeterminate origin (most likely source: cat vomit). Even though I try to avoid chemically based cleaners, I had used everything from Resolve® to OxyClean® to hydrogen peroxide without making much of a difference. A couple of treatments with Clean+Green’s carpet & upholstery cleaner, and much to my surprise, the stains actually disappeared. You can’t ask for an easier application: just spray and allow the area dry. No need for scrubbing or blotting.
And the best part? The product is completely unscented. I don’t like scented cleaning products of any kind, whether they’re chemically based or natural, and I’m guessing if cats had their say, they’d prefer unscented products, too.
They also sent me the furniture refresher product. I can’t say that I’ve ever had any need for a product to refresh my furniture – I’m thinking that’s more of an issue with dogs than it is with cats. So the most I can say about my experience with it is that it, too, meets my requirement for being completely scent-free.
You can learn more about the Clean+Green product line on their website, and you can find them on Facebook and on Twitter.