Pets have earned an increasingly important place in our hearts, and we want them by our side as much as possible. This includes taking them along as copilots on our road trip adventures, whether we’re heading around the corner or across the country. Of course, you can’t have an adventure without making a little bit of a mess. And the mess pets make most often in our cars is pet hair.
“Our pets are family, and they occupy multiple spaces in our lives, like our sofas, our beds, and our cars,” says Nitasha Rohatgi, Senior Brand Marketing Manager at Evercare, a leading manufacturer of lint rollers. “It’s important to have practical solutions for keeping these spaces clean and comfortable, especially when it comes to pet hair.”
With all its confined spaces, nooks and crannies, and different surface areas, the car is a particular mess magnet. Whether fur is flying in the air, embedding itself in the carpet, or drifting around the car like a tumbleweed, car travel with a pet is inevitably going to lead to a hairy situation.
There are two main ways of dealing with pet hair in cars: prevention and cleanup. A little bit of both will get you the best outcome. Try a few of these options and see what works for you.
Prevention won’t necessarily take care of all of the mess, but it will help dramatically and make cleanup easier.
Routine use of tools like undercoat rakes, shedding brushes, and deshedding shampoos and conditioners can dramatically reduce the amount of unwanted hair your pup produces long before he ever sets paw in your car. There are a wide number of shedding tools to choose from, including breed-specific varieties that advertise custom results. Whichever you choose, consistency is key, both to accustom your pet to the grooming process and to get control of shedding.
Back Seat Hammock
A back seat hammock is a practical way to keep fur off car seats and carpets. Hammocks are typically made from soft, waterproof fabric, which is suspended lengthwise between rows of seats. This allows the dog to relax comfortably, while keeping messes contained. A hammock is preferable in several ways to traditional seat covers, as it completely covers the gaps between seats and leaves the floor protected. When the car ride is over, you can easily slide it out and clean it.
This L-shaped cover is designed to keep the back cargo area of a minivan or SUV nice and clean. It’s designed to fit snugly against the back of the rear seat and the floor, keeping pet hair (and other messes) off of both. Once you’ve reached your destination, you can easily remove it and clean it off.
Believe it or not, this unusual tip really works. Fitting your dog into a snug tee or sweater before the trip will dramatically reduce the amount of hair that ends up in your car.
Cleaning up pet hair after a drive is certainly a chore, but it must be done. This will prevent fur from blanketing your dashboard or worse, matting into your carpet or fabric seats, making it even more difficult to remove. We have some tips and options for those stray pet hairs that inevitably break through our best defenses.
A lint roller is a handy, efficient, low-tech option that is easy to tote and store. There are plenty of lint rollers out there to choose from, but our pick is Evercare. Not only are they a leader in the lint roller industry, they have a lint roller line specific to pet hair.
Evercare’s pet line features several different sizes, including a small roller that easily fits into a car cup holder, making it handy for a quick cleanup of dashboards and front seats. Then there’s the mega roller, which includes an extendable handle that you can use to reach the entire carpet. Evercare’s lint rollers are also super-sticky and have sturdy, ergonomic handles, making them a dependable, high-quality option.
For a deeper occasional clean, you may want to invest in a shop vac. Companies like Dyson and Black + Decker feature powerful cordless models specifically made for pet hair. If you frequent the beach or the lake, you could go with a wet/dry vacuum that will suck up wet, matted pet hair from your car’s surface. Many standard hand-held vacs have pet hair attachments. And there’s always the mini-vac option – these don’t always have the power of larger cordless models, but they do have the advantage of being easy to stash and store in the car.
This is a great option for leather and vinyl seats, as well as dashboards and interior doors. These cloths are soft, non-damaging, and easy to stow anywhere. Plus, pet hair literally clings to them which makes cleanup simple, and they can be tossed in the wash and reused until they wear out. Casabella Infuse makes a durable microfiber cloth with a rough side that’s great for trapping hair and scrubbing grime, and a smooth side that’s great for shining smooth surfaces.
Latex rubber glove
This is another unique tip that really works well on fabric seats, as well as a vehicle’s carpeted areas. Simply put on an ordinary latex glove and run your hand over the surface you want to clean. The pet hair comes right up and bunches into a pile that you can easily pick up and toss out.
Cleaning up the car after pet rides might be tedious, but it’s a job made much easier by using these simple tips and devices. Besides, it’s worth the extra bit of effort to bring our furry kids along wherever the road takes us!