We all love our dogs, but those same feelings do not extend to pets' hair — more specifically the amount of dog hair that canines shed onto our carpets and furniture. Many different breeds of dogs shed hair with some more than others, but for as many dogs as there are shedding dog hair, there's almost an equal amount of tips and tricks that owners have to getting dog hair off furniture and other belongings.
Nearly every breed of dogs sheds, but some seem to shed enough to make a fur blanket! If shedding pets really upset you, you should stay away from dogs that shed the most including:
- Alaskan Malamute
- American Eskimo
- Chow Chow
- German Shepherd
- Great Pyrenees
There are many other breeds that shed a lot, but these are some of the top culprits. Breeds like the ones above are the types of dogs who don't just shed but their hair literally comes out in clumps during peak shedding times. Dogs like these need massive amounts of pet grooming and can be very high maintenance during spring and summer seasons.
It's not just long haired dogs that shed profusely either. Many short haired breeds can be big shedders just as well. It is impossible to tell by the look of a dog's coat how much they will shed. And although some canines will have less hair than others, none of the breeds are hypoallergenic. A hypoallergenic dog is a myth.
Keeping up with the endless task of loose pet hair is frustrating and no matter how many tricks you try, you can never keep up with it. Much like anything else you see on the internet or hear through the grape vine, not all dog hair remedies are valid, and some are more of a hassle than they are worth. Getting dog hair off furniture is no easy task, but there is something you can do to speed up the process and make it more efficient.
The shedding saga: Getting dog hair off furniture
Before focusing on how to get dog hair off your furniture, you should look at the source: your beloved pet canine.
Dogs shed hair naturally in order to get rid of damaged or old hair. How much they shed depends on their age, health, breed, and many other factors. It also depends on the season.
Interesting fact: Dogs that are kept indoors tend to shed less, and the amount they shed doesn't fluctuate as much as outdoor dogs.
Anyone that has ever had a dog that sheds a great deal understands the frustration that comes with the spring season. Many breeds develop a thick winter coat to help keep them warm when the temperature drops. But when the temperature begins to climb again in the spring, your dog will have to shed it off.
Brushing is the number one way that you can reduce and control the amount of dog hair that is shed in your home.
If you have a pooch that sheds a lot, try brushing her frequently (this is especially useful for longer-haired breeds like Collies). The more hair that you brush off your pet, the less loose hair is sticking to them and waiting to attach to your furniture.
RELATED: Top 5 best deshedding tools for dogs
By brushing the dog yourself, you’re able to control where your pet's hair spreads to and falls. Also, brushing your dog and grooming her frequently is an important sanitary step to ensure that the loose hair and dander in her coat doesn't stay in the “airspace” of your home.
“I do brush my dog regularly, but there is still dog hair all over my furniture. How do I get it off?”
After tackling your Fido's shedding problem at the source, it is inevitable that dog hair will still manage to find its way onto your clothing, your carpeting and your furniture. Since this is not a new problem, it means that many dog owners and petpreneurs have been long at work, hacking at the issue and attempting to find a way how to stop dogs from shedding, or at least decrease the amount of dog hair in your house.
There could be more solutions to keep your dog shed free, but here are five well-utilized methods to getting dog hair off your furniture:
- Tape or lint rollers
- Scrub brushes
- Window washing squeegees
- Rubber gloves
- Plain damp washcloth
These methods are targeted for any piece of furniture you have that seems to be a hair-magnet for your dog's fur: couch, chair, bed, etc. Let's take a quick look at every one of these tools that can potentially help you keep your dog somewhat shed-free, and remove dog hair off furniture with more ease and efficiency.
1Tape/Lint Roller for quick-and-easy dog hair removal
The first approach I suggest you to try should be a decent start, especially if your “pet hair on furniture” problem isn't that serious. This method involves duct tape, masking tape or a lint roller, and it is advisable for furniture that isn’t made of expensive fabrics and is not super-sensitive to friction.
For example, materials like velvet or velour would not be good for this tactic because it may do damage to those types of fabrics. However, for most others surfaces, tape/lint rollers and similar tactics should work like a charm. Simply using a two-inch wide tape, pull out 10-12 inches and lay the strip down on the couch where the loose hair is.
Lint rollers are easy to work with and they do the job well, but for more stubborn pet hair, lint rollers usually won't be strong enough.
Lint rollers work best on softer dog hair and hair that haven't yet made its way deep down into the fabric. Strong tape, like duct tape (e.g. pictured on the right), works much better for large amounts of hair and it's also a much cheaper solution.
If you take the Shurtech Duct Tape for example, when you peel the tape back, you will see that it removes most of the pet hair that’s there. Keep using the tape method until it is completely covered and you need to get a new piece. This technique is perfect for furniture that has dog hair deeply embedded into it. The friction of the tape is strong enough (especially if you have industrial-strength duct tape) that it can rip out even the most stubborn of dog hairs.
Top 5 best selling lint rollers for dog hair on Amazon:
- Scotch-Brite Lint Roller
- Bounce Free Sheets
- Remington Battery Operated Fabric Shaver
- Evercare Pet Hair Extra Sticky Lint Roller
- Evercare Lint Magik Brush
* The above top 5 picks for best selling lint rollers for pet hair are based on Amazon’s current Best Seller ranks [June, 2015].
2Traditional Scrub Brush for pet hair removal
The second method you have to getting dog hair off furniture is using a scrub brush (similar to the stiff ones you use around the house to clean tile floors). This is a thorough process that will require more work to clean up after your pet.
Once you have the scrub brush, run it along the furniture that has pet hair on it. The tough bristles on the brush will trap the hair and yank it off of the furniture. It is best to always go in the same direction or in small circles when using a scrub brush to remove dog hair. If you scrub all over the place, you are going to be spreading some of the hair around and it will make for more work in the long run.
RELATED: Top 5 best dog hair trimmers
After the brush has picked up all it can, pluck out the hair caught in it and run it across the furniture again until there is nothing left to pick up. As with the duct tape tactic, this is best for furniture that is not extremely sensitive and you do not run the risk of ruining your own furniture.
Dog owners who have a delicately upholstered couches and sofas, running a wiry and bristly scrub brush along it may cause damage that is unnecessary — there are other ways to solving the problem of dog hair that are much gentler.
3Window Washing Squeegee as the unusual method
A window washing squeegee is yet another effective method for getting dog hair off furniture. It’s an unusual method, considering that one never really plans to take that piece of equipment to use on their couches and chairs. However, it works on pet hair because it has such an even and defined way of peeling back hair from the furniture (much in the same way it has a thorough method of removing stains from car windows).
To remove pet hair using a car window washing squeegee, gently dampen the it (you don’t want it sodden, but you do want it a little moist to pick up dog's fur more easily) and run it across your furniture. The hair will be plucked up by the dampness and removed from the furniture.
I'll list some of the better window washing squeegees below from Amazon, but if you don’t have a window washer in your house and do not wish to buy one, simply use a slightly damp long mop; the kind with the sponges on the end, not the strings. Remember that although you want the mop/squeegee to be damp, you don’t want to get it too wet or it won’t pick up the hair and might even end up damaging your furniture.
4Rubber Gloves as a cheap alternative to other methods
You can also get dog hair off furniture by using a more common household item: rubber gloves (latex can work too). We all have them, whether they’re for doing dishes, scrubbing floors or even the thin medical kind that you may have in your first aid kit in the bathroom closet. Rubber gloves are a more specific and tactical way to remove pet hair from the furniture.
The way you do this is you lightly dampen the rubber gloves and run your hand across the upholstery. Hair will come off in clumps big enough for you to pick up and throw out. This is a cheap way to get rid of unwanted shedding on the furniture, and it is especially useful for interestingly shaped upholstery that wouldn’t easily conform to a mop or squeegee’s method of cleaning.
Some furniture has tiny ridges and crevices that a squeegee couldn't reach, but your rubber gloved-fingers will be able to get down in there. This might not be the most effective technique, but it works with small amounts of pet hair that isn't too stubborn. Try it and see if you can save the money by avoiding all those purchases mentioned above.
5Damp Washcloth for fast low-cost dog hair removal
Along the same lines as rubber gloves, washcloths are also something that everyone has in their house. The cotton or polyester in washcloths is gentle enough so that they can be used on any type of furniture surface. All you need to do is lightly dampen the washcloth and run it across the furniture to pick up any loose hair that may be lurking around.
Much like rubber gloves, this method works great for oddly shaped furniture or furniture with gaps, crevices, and ridges. Since you most likely have a washcloth handy, this is also one of the most cheap techniques to rid your furniture off dog hair, because it shouldn't cost you anything.
Unfortunately, using a damp washcloth with pet hair is not the most effective approach, but it does work to an extent. Oftentimes, the washcloth method may leave behind some stubborn hairs, but it will collect a large amount of the shed hair on your furniture. If your dog's shedding case is more serious, then my advice would be not simply not waste your time with damp washcloths and move on to something more effective mentioned above.
Top 5 most popular dog hair removal products on Amazon:
- FurMaster Deshedding Tool
- Scotch-Brite FurFighter Hair Remover Kit
- Scotch Pet Hair Roller
- Pet Buddies FurBeGone TPR Broom
- Chemical Guys Professional Rubber Pet Hair Removal Brush
* The above top 5 picks for most popular dog hair removal products are based on Amazon’s current Best Seller ranks [June, 2015].
Tips to reduce shedding in dogs and make cleaning pet hair off furniture a much simpler process
An excellent tip I'd like to mention first is that you should try to vacuum the hair-covered piece of furniture before trying any of these hair removal methods. Though the vacuum may not remove hair embedded deeply into the furniture, it can get enough of it up that it’ll only take a few swipes with a dampened cloth or scrub brush to remove the rest. It may save you a lot of unnecessary scrubbing and wiping.
Here's our list of ten best vacuums that you can use to help remove pet hair off furniture. And aside from brushing your dog regularly, there are also a few other things you can do to help keep her shedding to a minimum.
Did you ever realize that the food you feed your dog affects the amount of hair that they shed? A pet's coat condition is almost always directly related to the dog food that they eat. A higher quality pet food with supplements for skin and coat health will drastically reduce the amount your pooch sheds.
RELATED: Top 10 best grain free dog foods
Bathing your dog regularly, especially with a shed-reducing shampoo will also help to keep her shedding level low. These specially formulated shampoos work in the same way that a healthier dog food does. They have additives that enrich your dog's skin and coat, causing her to shed less.
In the most severe, hard-to-handle cases of shedding, it may be beneficial for you to cover your furniture save the home decor and keep the hair on the cover and off your couches and chairs. You can buy traditional furniture covers to protect against dog hair, but you can also find covers that are specifically made to collect dog hair. Below I have a few examples from Amazon that dog owners seems to like the best.
Top 5 best rated furniture covers for pet hair on Amazon:
- 100% Waterproof Mambe Furniture Cover for Pets
- Sure Fit Deluxe Sofa Pet Throw
- K&H Manufacturing Furniture Cover Couch
- Sure Fit Quilted Suede Sofa Pet Throw
- K&H Furniture Pet Cover for Couch
* The above top 5 picks for highly rated furniture covers for pet hair are based on Amazon’s current star ratings and customer reviews [June, 2015].
These furniture covers are not only made to collect the pet hair, but when you throw them in the washing machine the hair is easily released. If you choose to buy a traditional dog hair furniture cover, remember that some of your Fido's hair may still be stuck to it after you wash it. There's a chance that you will still need to use any of the tools mentioned above to completely rid your furniture cover off that annoying pet hair.
Prevention is definitely the best step you can take to reduce the amount of dog hair that is being shed around your house. With regular grooming and proper skin and coat care for your pooch, you should be able to drastically decrease the amount of hair your Fido sheds.
In absolute extreme cases, or for dog owners that don't have the time to clean up after their shedding pooch, you can always reach out and contact a professional cleaning service to help you get rid of the unwanted hair, but that is most definitely the most expensive option and is rarely a necessity. Happy cleaning!