“Bark” to School & “Bark” to Basics

Photo Courtesy of Daily Dog Tag

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  Bells will be ringing…school bells that is.  And with back to school comes after-summer cleaning, organizing back-to-school supplies and updating closets with new clothes and shoes.  For most of us our dogs are like our children and while they are not necessarily going back to school, it is still an opportune time to deep clean, organize their supplies and even get a new pair of shoes!

Keep It Clean!  Organization Junkie has a bunch of suggestions on how to periodically freshen up your home.  By neutralizing odors with an enzyme cleaner and using a mini-vacuum (or a squeegee to lift up the hair) to pick up pet hair, you won’t be able to smell any evidence of a pet in your house nor have any unwanted hair clinging to your new back-to-school clothes (don’t forget your trusty lint roller, too).   Additionally, brush and bathe your dog outdoors to avoid the hair from getting all over.  You can keep your air clean as well with an air purifier and by washing stuffed toys in the washing machine; if your dog has a bed, get a removable cover so that can be easily washed too!  Slip covers on your couches will help too if they prefer snuggling with you.  Finally, if it is

Photo Courtesy of Hill’s Pet Nutrition

muddy, rainy or snowy outside, keep a towel and water bowl near the door so your dog’s paws can be easily cleaned upon reentering the house – Saltsox would eliminate this dirty paw problem too!  Simply put the Saltsox on to prevent your dog’s paws from getting muddy or wet before they go outside and take them right off when they come in to save your white carpeting.  They will also protect your dog’s paws from the elements…especially once the snow comes.  Brrr!

Put It Away!  Like children’s toys, dog’s toys can easily get everywhere.  While it may be a bit hard to train a dog to put their toys away, use these simple tips to keep them organized:

  • Bins are great for keeping pet toys in one place but Frugal Ginger suggests getting a pet toy box – you can even personalize it with their name!  

    Photo Courtesy of Hometalk
  • Maybe you have a particular theme you want to stick with…I know the Farmhouse theme is really popular now.  Hometalk says to use a burlap bucket and decorate it with stencils to go with your decor.  
  • Instead of a regular plastic bin, use cute foldable cloth storage cubes – and even go a step further and use a storage unit to keep all sorts of items.  Organize 365 says to use these cubes as toy baskets especially if you live in a multi-level home.  You can keep one upstairs and another downstairs for quick pick-up.

Put Your Shoes On!  Now we are to the best and most exciting part of back-to-school…new shoes!  When going back to class it’s always fun to show up with your new threads and kicks.  It’s almost time to stow away our sandals and Lavasox and strap on our snow boots and Saltsox, the ideal cold-weather boot for the urban dog when it comes to protection from salt, snow, ice and freezing temperatures.  And like any other footwear, it’s important to get the right fit.  You may have been wondering how to pick the proper size for your dog’s paw.  So grab your rulers and let’s get to measuring! 

Measure the front paw by having your dog stand on a piece of paper.  Lift the opposite paw and mark the widest points of the paw pad on the paper. Measure the distance between the marks and compare to the chart below:


Now that our houses are smelling fresh and are free of pet hair, all of our pup’s toys have a spot and they are all measured-up for their new shoes, we are all set for the most wonderful time of the year…snuggling with our pups on fur-covered couches after playing with every one of their freshly organized toys on our squeaky clean floors.


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