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12 Surprising Ways to Use Common Household Products for Dogs

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While there’s a specially made product for just about anything dog owner’s will deal with, from smells and stains, to fleas and other pests, to dealing with a dog that digs, and everything in between, it turns out many of the household products you’re already using serve dual purpose for pet parents!


In this article, we’ll discuss 12 new ways to use the same products already in your pantry to make life a little easier for those with a dog in the house.

1. Has bathing the dog left the bathtub less than inviting? Clean stubborn stains and deodorize the entire bathroom using liquid fabric softener! Just fill the tub with warm water, add 2 tablespoons of fabric softener, and let it soak overnight. Surfactants in the fabric softener loosen dirt and grime so it easily rinses away and the fragrance will leave the entire room smelling fresh.

2. Is your dog a messy eater? Instead of risking ruined walls around the dinner bowls, adhere a sheet of shelf and drawer liner to the wall behind your pet’s bowls. The laminated surface makes clean-up a breeze. Just wipe away messes with a damp sponge.

3. Are you finding stubborn stains in your dog’s ceramic food bowls? Simply fill the bowl with a brown cola, like Coke or Pepsi, let sit for an hour, and rinse stubborn stains away. The phosphoric acid in the cola dissolves the food, dirt, and drool stains.

4. Speaking of your pet’s bowls, do you have a problem with ants making their way into your dog’s dinner? Just smear a dab of petroleum jelly around the bottom rim of the bowl to stop the pesky insects from stepping foot in your dog’s bowl.

5. Does your dog use a doggy door? Put that door on double-duty with some Velcro! Just adhere a strip of velcro along both sides of the bottom edge of the flap. When your dog comes and goes, he’ll rub against the Velcro which will grab and hold onto any loose hairs, preventing them from ending up all over the house.

6. Does your dog scratch or paw at a door or cabinet either to go outside or to get to the treats? Instead of repairing damaged doors, adhere a sheet of sandpaper to the area being scratched. This way, instead of destroying your doors, he’ll file his own nails.

7. Do you trim your dog’s nails yourself? If you accidentally trim a nail a little too close to the quick and don’t have any styptic powder in the first aid kit, safely stop the bleeding by pressing the bleeding nail into a dab of lip balm. Wax in the lip balm will put an end to bleeding.

8. Are you finding fleas in your dog’s bedding? Instead of spraying the bedding with harsh, dangerous chemicals or pesticides, use a mortar and pestle to crush fennel seeds into a fine powder. Sprinkle the powder into your pet’s bedding to naturally keep fleas away.

9. Some dogs, for a variety of reasons, are known to snack on either their own stool or the stools of other dogs in the home. To put an end to poo-eating, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of 100% pure canned pumpkin to your dogs’ bowls at each meal. Not only will the pumpkin add beneficial fiber to your dog’s diet, the papain in the pumpkin will change the taste of the poo to something a little less appealing (if you can imagine that!).

10. To quickly and safely kill fleas without the use of poisons, chemicals, or pesticides, reach, instead, for a bottle of Dawn dishwashing liquid. With your dog in a tub, starting from the neck and working your way down, lather up a small amount of the dishsoap with clean water and work down your dog’s body. Allow the soapy suds to soak on your dog’s skin and fur for at least 5 minutes. This method actually works better than many flea shampoos at killing and ridding a dog of fleas.

11. Quickly and easily rid carpet and upholstery of shed dog hair using a pair of rubber gloves. Just run a gloved hand under water, then wipe away shed hair. The wet rubber glove will attract loose hairs. Just rinse the glove and repeat as necessary.

12. To keep dogs from digging or playing in flowerbeds or vegetable gardens, sprinkle the garden beds with ground black pepper. Because of their incredible sense of smell, most dogs will catch a whiff of the pepper and steer clear of your garden.

Got any other unique tips or tricks for pet parents? Please, share them in a comment below!

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