(ARA) - Pet owners understand extra cleaning is part of the deal when bringing a puppy into their homes and lives. Cleaning up after a dog is enough work in itself, so the last thing any owner wants is a pooch that is agitated by the sights and sounds of cleaning. There are several techniques that can help your dog stay calm when you reach for your sponge and Swiffer.
"Your attitude and approach to cleaning up after and around your pet is critical," says Cesar Millan, renowned dog behavior specialist and host of the Emmy-nominated series, Dog Whisperer. "If you are stressed or frustrated when you pick up a cleaning tool, your dog can pick up on this negative energy and associate the cleaning tool with negativity. This can create instability and can result in problematic behaviors."
Millan offers his top tips to create a pet-friendly environment, from combating pet hair to preparing for a new puppy at home:
* If you feel yourself getting frustrated, take a step back and recharge for five minutes before starting, and reconsider your cleaning tools. Tools that can do two things at once can make you more relaxed about the process - and dogs pick up on that.
* Cleaning introduces new smells into the environment, and a dog's sense of smell is its strongest sense. If your dog gets tense or upset when you clean, pay attention to the scents you are using. Try cleaning products that are available in a Lavender and Vanilla scent, which can be soothing to your dog.
* Focusing on efficiency and multi-tasking can make cleaning chores easier and more expedient. Supplies that accomplish more than one task can save time and avoid agitation, especially tools that handle all kinds of pet messes. Try the newly redesigned 2-in-1 Swiffer SweeperVac, which tackles all messes, vacuuming pet food and clumps of hair, while trapping crumbs, dirt and dust to get floors thoroughly clean in one quick and easy step.
* When you first bring home a puppy, involve the entire family in the process. Even younger children can participate in the various responsibilities by making sure there is fresh water in the dog's bowl or accompanying a parent on the puppy's walks.
* One important part of the housebreaking process is cleaning up after your dog has an accident. If he's had an accident in an area once, he's more likely to go there again because of the odor. The best cleaning methods eliminate both the mess and the smell.
Find more tips on cleaning up after pets at www.swiffer.com.
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