If your dog toys do not get destroyed within the week, then from time to time, your dog toys need to be cleaned. After weeks of being chewed and carried around the house and outside, they get dirty. Washing off germs and bacteria will keep your dog healthy, the dog toys looking better and your home cleaner.
- Collect all your dog’s toys from around the house including soft plush toys, vinyl, plastic and even bones. Look under couches, tables and beds. Go outside and collect toys that are hidden under decks, trees and bushes.
- Sort the dog toys into groups. Put all plush, fabric and cloth toys into a laundry basket. Put all vinyl, plastic, rubber and nylon toys in a mop bucket. Place all natural bones in the kitchen sink. Discard any toys that are broken, torn or have small parts hanging loose. They may pose a choking hazard.
- Fill the mop bucket with hot water. Add one-half cup of bleach to the bucket and let the toys soak in the bleach water solution. After they have soaked for at least 30 minutes, use the scrub brush to loosen any dirt. Dump the bucket of bleach water, and refill with clean, clear hot water. Let the toys soak another 30 minutes. Remove the toys from the bucket, and hand rinse each toy under a faucet. Be sure no smell of bleach is left on the toys. Allow the dog toys to dry on a towel before giving them back to your pet.
- Use the scrub brush and hot water to clean the natural bones in the sink. Loosen any mud or dirt from outdoor play. Do not use any chemical cleaners on natural bones. Allow the bones to dry on a towel before giving them to your dog.
- Start a load of laundry for your plush and fabric dog toys. Select the hot water wash, and a partial load if you don’t have many dog toys. Add your laundry detergent before the toys so they don’t absorb all the soap. Add a small amount of bleach to the water. After the wash cycle is complete, put the dog toys into the dryer on the hottest drying cycle. This will help kill any germs and bacteria on the toys.
You’ve finally gotten that family pet that you and your children have always wanted. A pet can be a wonderful experience for children, teaching them about responsibility, love and how to care for another living thing. But it can take some work from you to teach children how to care for pets.
You may want to make a pet care chart in order to keep track of your child’s responsibilities.
- Talk to your child about their responsibilities regarding the pet. Decide with your child what your child’s chores will be when caring for the pet. Be willing to negotiate and compromise. Perhaps you will take care of cleaning up after the pet, if your children take care of feeding and watering the pet.
- Make sure your children’s chores are age appropriate. A 5-year-old child may be able to help you clean a hamster cage, but they won’t be able to do it on their own.
- Make up a pet care chart that clearly explains your child’s chores. Whenever your children take care of a chore, check off a box or put a sticker on the chore chart. Give them a prize, such as a movie out or a pizza night whenever they get a certain amount of stickers or checks.
- Teach children the benefits of having pets. Not only should they have the responsibilities associated with pets, but they should have the joys too. Teach young children how to pet dogs and cats and show them how to hold smaller animals such as guinea pigs and hamsters. Teach children to be gentle around the pet so your pet doesn’t fear your child. Allow children to feed, train, give treats and play with the pets so your pets become bonded to the children and not only to you.
- Expect to remind your children of their responsibilities in caring for the pet. In a perfect world, you would not have to remind your children over and over again to do their chores, but children need the repetition. Expect to have to remind them, but don’t expect to have to do the chore yourself, unless your children are very young.
Tips & Warnings
A pet that has gone through some training will be easier for your child to care for.
If a pet becomes aggressive with a child, separate your child from the pet.