Pet dander consists of dry skin, pet hair and animal urine. Often it collects on an animal after cleansing and attaches itself to the animal's skin and fir. Upon the animal moving, the dander detaches and becomes airborne or falls directly onto hard surfaces or carpeted areas. Many individuals have allergies associated with pet dander. Those who do not have an allergy specifically may find that dander creates an unpleasant odor or sight once it begins to build up.
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Steam cleaning the dander-affected areas is an effective method of removing pet dander from a home. When used in combination with vacuuming and dusting, the cleaner can remove a significant amount of dander from the area. Steam cleaning will also kill any odor-causing bacteria that may reside in or around the dander itself.
Cover up central air vents before cleaning to eliminate spreading the dander through the ducts during the cleaning process. Thoroughly dust and vacuum or sweep the area you want to steam clean beforehand. Use an air purifier throughout the process, if possible, to remove any dander that becomes airborne while cleaning. Place any washable rugs or fabrics into the washing machine using the hottest settings possible for the particular fabrics. You should vacuum the carpet with a vacuum that contains a high-efficiency air filter, or use a unit specifically for removing pet dander or hair.
Use pet dander specific cleaner with your steam cleaner for the most effective results. Always use hot water when steam cleaning the area to kill bacteria that may reside within the dander. Use an upholstery attachment on the steam cleaner to eliminate dander from non-machine washable furniture upholstery or linens. Allow the area to completely dry before vacuuming or sweeping once more to remove any lingering traces of the dander.
Bathe your pet frequently to eliminate the buildup of dander on your pet's skin or fur. Use pet shampoo specifically for the elimination of pet dander if available. Oral medication is also available for your pet to eliminate the generation of pet dander. To avoid steam cleaning every area of the home each time, keep your animal in certain areas of the home if possible.
Steaming surfaces, fabrics and flooring should occur at least once a month. You should steam clean more frequently if anyone in the household is allergic to the dander. If you have an animal that has long hair, brush them often to expel pet dander and excess pet hair in a central location. If you cannot groom your pet frequently and are still experiencing excess dander, vacuum and dust two to three times per week, and steam clean twice per month.
- Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America: Information About Asthma, Allergies, Food Allergies and More!
- Sam’s Club: How Do You Clean a Room to Be Allergy Free?
- American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology: Allergist: The Best 5 Tips for Managing Pet Allergies
- Health Guidance: What is Pet Dander Allergy?