Tips For Moving Into A House That Had Cats (How To Clean And Deodorize)

If you’re moving into a house that had cats or dogs, you might want to consider taking a few extra steps when cleaning just to ensure the home is properly cleaned.

I have a small dog myself, and lucky for me he is hypoallergenic so I’ve never really had to worry about dog hair and pet mess when moving houses. However, I have most certainly moved into a house that had cats, and cat smalls can be quite difficult to remove.

While the previous home occupant may have done a great job at covering up the smells with a cleaning agent, that cleaning agent will eventually wear off and the cat smells will linger. Ask me how I know!

You might find yourself faced with damaged carpets from pets urinating on them, or walls that are stained with cat spray. All of these areas of the home will be easy to miss during an initial walkthrough, especially since they can be covered up temporarily, but you don’t really want to live with that permanently.

It is especially important to properly and thoroughly clean a house that had cats if you have any allergies to pets. Your allergies may not flare up right away, but over time, since you are living in a home that is contaminated with hiding pet fur and other pet messes, your allergies will start to surface and you may not even realize the cause of them immediately.

Thank goodness there are ways to get your home clean and in tip top shape, ready for you to live inside.

Here are my best tips on cleaning a house that had pets.

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Tips For Moving Into A House That Had Cats

Before moving into a new house, I would ask the previous occupants of cats or any other pets who have lived in that home. Hopefully, they are the kind of people who will disclose the proper information to you and you can find out if there are possibilities of pet messes to clean in the future.

If there were cats or dogs that lived in the home, I would take extra steps to clean the house properly before moving in your belongings. It will be much more difficult to properly clean the house if you have to move the couch around, and shift all your furniture just to get into those hard-to-reach spots to get a proper clean.

Open The Windows

Before you move into a home that previously had pets living inside of it is to open up all of the windows and let the fresh air inside the home. This is great to do even if it is the dead of winter because the cold will come inside and freeze some of the dust mites that might cause you allergies in the future.

Letting sunshine inside the home can also be helpful because the sun has to disinfect properties that are natural and can help disinfect the house. It’s still a good idea to do a deeper clean later, but opening the windows and letting in the sunshine and fresh air is a good start to getting rid of dust mites.

Dust Well

Even the house looks clean before you move into it, go over it once more and dust it really well. It is nearly impossible to have a dust-free home, even if all the furniture has been moved out. There is always dust lingering on the fireplace mantel, baseboards, top of the door frame, window frames, and more. Dust is literally all around you, and pet dander mixed in with regular dust and dirt can prove to be inconvenient if you have allergies.

Here are some more resources on dust to help you keep up with the dust in your home.

Deep Clean All Parts Of The House

When moving into a new home, you might be lucky enough to have had a professional cleaning company come in and do a deep clean on the home for you. Even if you did have a cleaning crew come in, you should still consider doing your own deep clean inside the house simply because then you would have a peace of mind knowing you cleaned all the proper areas of the house.

You’ll definitely want to wash the walls and remove any curtains and blinds that were left behind and give them a proper cleaning. I would also do a deep clean on the dishwasher before you start using it regularly.

Another area of the home you will want to deep clean is all the air vents. Lift up those covers and vacuum up the inside of the vents.

This is important because some pets can poop and urinate inside of these vents, and the cleaning crew won’t look in there or clean in there for you. If you’re moving into the house in the summer, you may not notice any smells coming from the vents until wintertime. This is pretty gross, and many pet owners don’t know that their pets have done this in the past so there has been no reason to clean there.

Get Rid Of Carpets / Deep Clean Carpets

If your new home has carpets and you have the chance to get rid of the carpets, do so right away. Homes that have had pets living inside will most likely have damaged carpeting, which can be a health hazard for you and your family members. If you simply cannot get rid of the carpets in your home, I highly suggest doing a deep clean of the carpets using a steam cleaner and professional-grade carpet cleaning solution. You can rent steam cleaning machines if you do not have easy access to one at home.

This is important, if you can simply get rid of the carpets or replace them then giving them a deep clean is the next best thing. This is my favourite steam cleaner and carpet cleaning solution for cleaning carpets.

Change Out Furnace Filters

Replacing the furnace filters in your new home should already be standard practice, but if it is not, and you are moving into a home that previously had pets inside then getting a new filter should be a priority. Having a clean filter can ensure that your home isn’t circulating old pet hairs and strange odours around the house. you should always replace the filters when moving into a new house, but it really is more important when you’re moving into a house that had pets.

How to Get Rid of Pet Odor in Hardwood Floors

Let’s look at the most effective methods for removing pet odour from hardwood flooring.

Because hardwood floors are an expensive luxury, it’s critical to preserve them in good shape.

To protect yourself from your pet’s urine, use gloves for all of these procedures.

Using Baking Soda

This one is ideal for dealing with messes caused by pets.

This one is ideal for dealing with messes caused by pets.

  • Using paper towels, soak up as much pee as possible.
  • Using a moist towel, wipe the area clean.
  • Using a towel, dry the area.
  • Apply a substantial amount of baking soda to the area where your pet peed.
  • Allow at least eight hours for the baking soda to dissolve. Baking soda absorbs moisture and eliminates smells.
  • Carefully vacuum it up.

Use a hardwood-safe disinfectant to clean the flooring.
To kill germs from the urine, wash the towel at a high temperature and dry it in the tumble dryer.

Using Special Pet Odor Remover

This procedure is excellent for hardwood floors that have been sealed. In our cabinet, we have two large bottles of pet odour removal liquid. 

Simply ensure that the product you purchase is suitable for use on hardwood floors.

  • Using paper towels, soak up any extra pee.
  • Using a moist cloth or sponge, clean the area.
  • Using a towel, thoroughly dry the area.
  • Spray the affected area with the odor-removing product.
  • Allow it to sit for the specified amount of time on the package.
  • Using a clean moist cloth or sponge,https://thecleaningmommy.com/clean-with-vinegar/ wipe the area clean.
  • Fresh water should be used to rinse the area.
  • Using a clean towel, thoroughly dry the area.

To kill germs, wash the cleaning products you used — sponges, rags, and towels — in a hot wash.

Vinegar Baking Soda Mix

Don’t have a pet odour eliminator and don’t want to sand your flooring back? This is a wonderful way to get rid of old pet stains and odours from any type of wood floor.

  • In a cup, combine 13 cup distilled white vinegar, 14 cup baking soda, and a drop of dish soap.
  • Fill a spray bottle with it and soak the affected area.
  • Allow for 15 minutes of resting time.
  • Using a clean cloth, wipe it down.
  • Overnight, sprinkle baking soda over the affected region.
  • Vacuum first thing in the morning.
  • If the odour persists, repeat the procedure.

To ensure that your flooring are not damaged, test in an inconspicuous location first.

Will Hydrogen Peroxide Damage Hardwood Floors?

Hydrogen peroxide is not harmful to hardwood flooring. We haven’t recommended it because it’s more for stains than scents. Even if you’ve removed the odour but still have a stain, this is a smart option to consider.

  • Fill a spray bottle with 3 percent hydrogen peroxide and apply it on the stain.
  • Allow for some time to pass before wiping with a microfiber towel.
  • For tough stains, you’ll need to put in some elbow grease.
  • Rinse the area well.
  • Thoroughly dry the area.

To make sure the hydrogen peroxide won’t stain your floors, test it in an inconspicuous area first.

Cleaning A House That Previously Had Pets

If you have any sort of allergies to pets and are moving into a place that has had animals, then you might want to take these things very seriously and follow the steps to ensure your home is very very clean before you move in.

Dander loves to hide in carpets, so I would personally consider living in a home that had more laminate or hardwood flooring instead of carpets throughout. Laminate flooring is much easier to clean. Personally, I like to vacuum my laminate flooring daily because I can see all the dust that the children and the dog brought in from outside. Once a week I’ll use my vacuum mop, unless things get really dirty, in which case I use a spin mop to quickly get rid of surface grime.

Regardless of the type of animal that might have lived in your home before you moved in, there is still a chance this microscopic dander ends up all over the house even if you cannot see it. This is why a proper and thorough cleaning must be done prior to moving in.

Do you think you have all the information you need to feel comfortable moving into a house that had pets before?

Frequently Asked Questions

You can get rid of pet odour in your new home with these tips. Our four fantastic ways will assist you in combating deep permeating odours, but I still urge that you deal with the problem right away.

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