Stylish Strategies to Weather Spring Storms

With April showers on the way, Martha Stewart offers 10 suggestions for surviving the sprinkles in style. Start by crafting an umbrella stand and making sure there are a range of repurposed hooks to hang the family’s soggy slickers and jackets. Then, keep your floors clean and dry by leaving “a double-doormat barrier” and tray for your wet Wellies at the entrances to your home. Keep a drying rack, mop and sponge handy, she says, and — as if a clean house isn’t reward enough — bake some lemony sugar cookies to treat yourself to a life well-lived.

Décor for the Fastidious Pet Parent

As a pet parent, your décor can affect how much dirt enters the home and stays, says Modern Dog. To keep dirt from getting in, use doormats and washable throw rugs at entrances to catch some of what those dirty paws track in; you can also keep a paw towel or footbath near the door for rainy days. Put trays under food bowls to catch any overflow or messes. And finally, pick out low-pile rugs, stain-resistant fabrics, and leather or vinyl upholstery, so that hair and stains will present less of a problem.

Confine Dirt to the Litter Box

Even an “indoor” cat can make it difficult to keep the home clean and odor-free. The litter box can become a major source of dirt and odors if you aren’t careful. Make sure that you place your litter box in a place you can access frequently to keep it clean, says IHeartCats. Pick a litter that suits your cleaning style, and make spot-cleaning stray litter and near-misses easy by having a handheld vacuum, broom and paper towels nearby. Mats and plastic liners and can keep the dirty litter confined, the site adds.

Keeping Pet Hair Under Control

Excess hair in the home is always an issue for people with pets. Most cats have a lighter-than air undercoat that sheds and renews throughout the year, while dogs that shed often have heavy seasons dictated by outdoor temperatures, making summers a challenge. To keep the dander down, brush your animal companions on a weekly basis, and sweep and vacuum the floors at least as often, Daily Mom says. Not only will your pets be more comfortable in the summer heat, the house will host fewer allergens.

Make the Dog Days Less Dirty

The “dog days” of summer can be hot, sticky and downright dirty when you have pets. Dogs, in particular, track lots of dirt and mud in from the outdoors, so if have a four-legged family member, it can be a struggle to keep your home clean. The first step is to keep your dog clean, says House Beautiful; establish a regular grooming schedule that includes bathing, brushing and professional treatments, if its breed characteristics and coat demand it. A cleaner dog means a cleaner home.