In the last few years, offices have become a lot more “like home”, and we don’t just mean the millions of people working remotely. In the office, you’re also more likely to see people actually cooking and sharing meals in office kitchens, bringing blankets and space heaters from home, decorating with more personalisation and – everyone’s favourite – the office pet.
Whether your office is dog-friendly and invites employee dogs to visit or you have an office cat whom everyone loves to give a scratch when they pass the lounging spot, office pets are on the rise. Heartwarming as they are, office pets also increase the need for regular and thorough cleaning and maintenance to ensure that the pet and employees are all comfortable sharing the same space.
In honor of all our favourite office pets, at home and at work, we’ve put together a helpful step-by-step guide for keeping an office clean when fur is factor.
1. Prepare for Fur Control
First and foremost, prepare for fur control. Vacuum more often, and more thoroughly, than you would without a fur-baby in the space. Don’t forget the corners and the upholstery – and if it seems like your vacuum isn’t picking up enough fur, check the bag and beaters. You may need to clean out either during a vacuum session – especially for pets with particularly fine or coarse hair.
2. Post a Pet Brushing Rotation
Office managers should make it a shared duty to brush the office pet – if mammalian – and to clean out the brush each time. Regular brushing can significantly reduce the amount of shedding, allergies, and clean-up that all source from a loving office dog or cat. Plus, it’s an important bonding activity that makes pets feel loved. Those who bring their pets to work should b advised to brush daily to reduce in-office shedding.
3. Frequent Air Filter Changes with a Higher MERV Rating
When there’s a pet, air filters should be changed more often – at least once a month. You may also consider increasing your MERV rating from the standard MERV 8 to MERV 11 or higher in order to reduce allergies in the office caused by pet dander or any pollen they bring in from time spent outside.
4. Wipe Down the Feeding Station
Pet feeding stations are a source of joy, but also a source of mess. These areas often need to be cleaned regularly, so it’s a smart task to add to your office pet cleaning checklist. Remove the water and food dish, then spray and wipe down the entire area. If you have a raised feeding station ( more comfortable and cleaner or the pet) then lift it up and wash the floor underneath, as well.
5. Regularly Change Food and Water Dishes
Keep backup food and water dishes, at least two of each, so you can empty and clean them when cleaning the office. This ensures your office pet is never drinking water from a slimy dish and that their bowl is never “all crumbs” at the bottom.
6. Use and Wash Floor Covers in the Pet’s Area
One of the best ways to keep an office pet’s play and napping area clean is to use a floor cover – the same as you might with a children’s play pen or the floor of a play room. A vinyl floor cover or perhaps even foam puzzle floor pieces can be easier to clean than office carpets, water-proof for accidents, and can be mopped or changed out when it’s time to deep clean the space.
7. Have a Backup Space for the Pet When Cleaning Occurs
If the office pet lives at the office, make sure they have a backup space to be while you clean their primary space. Office cats are often quite content simply to lounge nearby and quietly watch the activity. An office dog, however, may need a separate pen or perhaps time spend in an enclosure or on a long leash outdoors while you clean their indoor space.
Smaller pets like hamsters, gerbils, or even lizards may benefit from a backup habitat or terrarium – though you might try a hamster ball for good fun – and fish have their own tank-cleaning procedures to follow.
8. Considerations for the Pet’s Potty Space
Dogs and cats both make good office pets, but they have very different potty needs. Make sure your landscapers are on the job of cleaning up the potty area of an office dog, while indoor catbox duty should be conducted wearing gloves along with nsoe and mouth protection because – precious as the kitty may be – cat boxes are toxic. Be sure to use clumping and deodorising cat litter and consider an auto-cleaning box to reduce the need for this unpleasant daily chore.
9. Vacuum and Wash the Pet Bed or Habitat
Don’t forget the pet’s favourite bed. They won’t mind if you vacuum and wash it occasionally, especially since pet beds tend to fill with shed fur. Vacuum pet beds regularly, wash occasionally, and use dryer balls to keep them fluffy when drying.
For smaller pets, washing the pet bed may include changing out their woodchips and placing a clean washcloth to use as a blanket.
10. Schedule Regular Pet Baths
Finally, it may not be your duty to wash the pet, but your job will be easier of the office pet receives regularly scheduled pet baths. There are even mobile bathing units that will swing by for a curbside wash, brush, and trim to keep your office pets smelling nice and shedding very little.
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