Somewhere between 67% and 84% of households in the United States have pets, and those numbers only include cats and dogs. As a country, we love our pets, and at Mulberrys Garment Care, we’ve seen evidence of that love plenty of times in the clothing that we’ve dry cleaned for our clients in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Eagan, Edina, and St Louis Park. The sad fact is that pets, especially those that are very young or very old, can be a little bit destructive at times.
There are several problems that pet owners face when it comes to their clothing: pet hair, “accident” stains, and any kind of mud, grass, or outdoor debris that pets can drag inside. Add in the chances that any of these could occur when you’re wearing your nicest clothing, and you can see how the pets vs. clothing battle can be a nightmare. While we always recommend seeking out a great dry cleaner to care for your most delicate or expensive fabrics, here are some ways to get rid of pet stains and other problems from your furniture and machine-washable fabrics:
Whether you have a cat or a dog, chances are you’ll have to deal with pet hair at some point. Most breeds of pets with fur shed their coats throughout the warm months, and cats, with their constant bathing, leave behind hair throughout the entire year. If your pet hasn’t had a bath or a brush recently, simply touching them as you walk by can leave hair all over your clothing. Something we’ve seen a lot as dry cleaners is blankets, or flannel shirts, with pet hair embedded deeply in the fabric; the more pet owners tried to wash the fabric, the worse the pet hair clung.
If you can get to the hair right as it’s transferred, a lint roller is the best option. Even the sticky side of packing tape can be used in a pinch. When washing, be sure that you shake out any fabrics with a lot of pet hair on them, and use both liquid softener and dryer sheets to loosen hair from clothing. You should also be very careful to clean out your lint trap and wipe out the inside of your washer between loads. If stubborn pet hair is clinging to fabrics that can’t be machine washed, like lace or mesh clothing, dry cleaning is your best choice for ridding the material of the hair for good.
Dogs and cats are both culprits when it comes to having accidents inside, especially when they are either very young and untrained, or very old and losing some bladder control. For clothing that can be machine washed, you can flush the area with cold water to force the smell of urine or feces out of the fabric fibers. Be sure you use very hot water when washing. However, if the accident was vomit rather than urine, use cold water when washing, because hot water can “cook” the proteins in the vomit, which sets the stain in deeper. You should never place a stained item into your dryer, because it will set the stain in; repeat the flush and wash at least once more before air drying.
Once again, for delicate fabrics, your best choice is to seek out our professional dry cleaning services in Edina, Eagan, Minneapolis, St. Paul, or the St. Louis Park areas, to ensure that your fabric isn’t harmed during the cleaning process. Using chemical cleaners that carefully remove stains and preserve fabric, we can make your pet-loving home a safer place for your clothing, which makes everyone in the family happier.