1. How to Create a Tidy-Up Station for Your Pet
  • How to Create a Tidy-Up Station for Your Pet

    Keep dust, pollen and pet waste from hitching a ride inside on your pet’s fur or feet.

    Clean-pet checkpoint

    It’s easy enough for us humans to remove our dirty shoes when we walk through the door. But what about our pets who tend to track in pieces of the great outdoors? You know, the same lovable furry friends that roll all over your couch or bed.

    One way to keep toxins and other trouble from entering your domestic domain is to create a pet cleanup station just inside the door. Make your station as crafty or as simple as you like—a box or bin works just fine. Stock it with these basic items and you’ll never have to hunt around for supplies while the dog waits at—or dashes away from—the door.

    • A shallow plastic tray and a stack of towels

      Fill the tray with warm, soapy water. Dip each paw into the tray, then towel dry. And remember to machine wash dog towels frequently and on the hottest setting.

    • Alcohol-free wipes

      Keep these on hand for a little extra cleaning power—or for when you’re in a hurry and don’t have time for the tray routine.

    • Tweezers, cotton balls, rubber gloves and antiseptic spray

      When you find a tick on your pet, you’ll want all your pest removal tools within arm’s reach. Make sure you put gloves on before removing a tick, since they can carry infectious agents.

    • Treats and water bowl

      Paw pampering is not every dog’s idea of a good time. Help them warm up to the new routine with some positive reinforcement.

    • Brush or detangling tool

      Perfect for the post-hike tick inspections, and Fluffy gets a mini-grooming each time you come in the house.

    • Scissors

      What’s that awful smell? Why, it’s the dreaded poop-caught-in-dog-fur scenario. No need for a bath—just pull on the rubber gloves and cut your troubles away. Make sure to compost or safely dispose of waste-matted fur as soon as possible.

    • Dog boots

      Great for muddy days. Even better for winter in urban areas, when de-icing crystals cover city streets. The salt can wreak havoc on sensitive paws, which are already dry in winter.

    • Leash and pet waste bags

      Let your station be the one-stop shop for everything your pup needs to enjoy a walk or romp outdoors, too. Balls, Frisbees, bones—it’s all ready to go when they’re ready for playtime.