Selling a House with Pets? Stock Up on These 16 Products, Pronto

Every pet owner knows to expect the unexpected. Even your most low maintenance furry friends can get sick one morning or track in mud from outside, leaving you to clean up the aftermath. Pets are always worth the trouble, but when you sell your house, you have to be extra vigilant to hide the evidence of any mishaps!

Even if your pet isn’t a destructive dervish, you’ll feel better if you’re equipped with the right emergency supply kit at home and products that make living with pets easier and cleaner. Plus, new routines and the stress you feel can put your pets on edge.

So, we’ve combed through leading pet blogs and tons of product reviews to bring you this array of recommended items for shaping up your house when selling with pets. Take a look, create your shopping list, then stock up so you’re never left to clean up any mess with just tap water and paper towels.

selling a house with pets
Source: (Brett Jordan/ Unsplash)

1. Rocco & Roxie Professional Strength Stain & Odor Eliminator

Why we recommend it:

An Amazon.com top seller with thousands of reviews, this product is effective on pet urine and other messes, thanks to natural enzymatic bacteria that activate on contact with organic material. Chlorine-free and color-safe. Gentle enough around children and on all types of carpeting, upholstery, hardwood flooring, tile, concrete, litter boxes, garbage cans, and diaper pails.

How to use:

Spray liberally on affected area. Let stand for five to ten minutes. Blot with a cloth and let air dry.

Where to buy:

Amazon.com ($19.97 for 32 oz.)

2. Bissell Professional Pet Stain and Odor Remover

Why we recommend it:

Good Housekeeping put its coveted seal of approval on this enzyme-containing formula that also keeps pets from returning to soil the same area. Good for carpets, mattresses, upholstery, and inside cars (if Fido tosses cookies after you had to leave the house in haste for a showing, this will come in handy).

How to use:

Spray on affected area. For heavy stains and odors, cover with a moist towel for 12 to 72 hours, then uncover to dry.

Where to buy:

Bissell.com ($7.99 for 22 oz.)

3. Resolve Pet Carpet Cleaner Powder

Why we recommend it:

If you’re worried about overwetting your carpet, this moist powder works on ground-in soil as well as pet odors. A good choice for more delicate carpeting, except for antique or oriental rugs.

How to use:

Sprinkle on affected area and spread with a soft brush. Wait about 20 minutes for the granules to dry, then vacuum.

Where to buy:

Amazon.com ($7.81 for 18 oz.)

selling a house with pets
Source: (Amazon, Bissell)

4. Angry Orange Pet Odor Eliminator

Why we recommend it:

If persistent odor is an issue instead of stains, this product uses a commercial-grade citrus odor eliminator (originally formulated for industrial use at feedlots and poultry farms) made from the oil in orange peels. Biodegradable and non-toxic, it also can eliminate odors in the yard that might be bothersome.

How to use:

Pour 2 tablespoons of concentrate into a clean sprayer bottle and fill the rest with water. (One bottle makes up to a gallon of solution.)

Where to buy:

Amazon.com ($22.97 for 8 oz.)

5. Paw Plunger

Why we recommend it:

Once your floors are clean, keep your pup from trekking in muddy messes (and paw-irritating winter salt, come to think of it) with this gentle cylindrical washtub that focuses on the feet. No need to wrestle with your dog for a full bath.

How to use:

Add water and dip each paw into the container. No soap or detergent needed. Comes sized for small, medium, and large dogs.

Where to buy:

Chewy.com ($12.95 to $24.95)

selling a house with pets
Source: (Amazon, Chewy)

6. simplehuman Large Pet Food Storage Can

Why we recommend it:

As a pet owner, you may just keep your furry friend’s food in the bag that it came in. That’s fine. Yet when the time comes to sell your house, you need a better solution for odor control and appearance. The simplehuman Large Pet Food Storage Can isn’t cheap, but it is the best option because:

  1. It’s airtight and therefore keeps the smell of kibble from wafting throughout the rest of the house.
  2. It has a sleek design and also comes on wheels so you can easily stow it away somewhere.
  3. You can use it long after your house sells to protect your pet’s food from pests and contaminants. Plus the food will stay fresh longer.

How to use:

Fill the container up with food, use the lock-tight handle to clamp it shut, then store it away. That’s it!

Where to buy:

Amazon.com ($119.42)

7. Vansky 51 LED Ultraviolet Black Light Flashlight

Why we recommend it:

Even if you’re meticulous about cleaning up after your pets, what you’ve missed might surprise you. This light illuminates any dry pet stains not visible to the naked eye. (It won’t pinpoint wet puddles or potty pads.)

How to use:

Turn on like a regular flashlight and shine around any suspected areas. Works best in darkness. (The manufacturer notes that on some dark fabrics, the reflected bluish color of the stain may be tough to see).

Where to buy:

Amazon.com ($12.99)

selling a house with pets
Source: (Amazon)

8. Bissell Pet Stain Eraser 2003T Cordless Portable Carpet Cleaner

Why we recommend it:

For quick touch-ups, this cordless, rechargeable cleaner sucks up wet spills and attacks stains on carpet and cushions before they sink in. It has powerful suction, a lithium-ion battery that has 15 minutes of running time, and weighs less than five pounds.

How to use:

It includes a ready-to-use cleaning formula, which stores in the machine. This one device sprays, scrubs, and suctions.

Where to buy:

Bissell.com ($84.99)

9. Eureka FloorRover Upright Vacuum

Why we recommend it:

You may already have a vacuum, but this one earns top marks from testers and consumers for picking up pet hair from bedding, upholstery, stairs, carpet, and hard flooring. Its swivel steering makes it easy to maneuver.

How to use:

The vacuum has an easy-to-empty dust cup, so there’s no need to buy vacuum bags. It also includes a 16-inch crevice tool, a pet turbo brush, and a 2-in-1 upholstery tool.

Where to buy:

Amazon.com ($179.99)

selling a house with pets
Source: (Bissell, Amazon)

10. Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner Spray

Why we recommend it:

If you don’t have carpeting, this gentle cleanser will keep your hardwood floors fresh without dulling residue. Good for dried-on stains but also tackling tracked-in messes. Free of harsh chemicals and safe for all unwaxed wood floors that are finished with polyurethane.

How to use:

Spray on floor surface, then mop.

Where to buy:

Target.com ($6.19 for 22 oz.)

11. Clorox Scentiva Disinfecting Wet Mopping Cloths

Why we recommend it:

These pads work with other wet mop frames but have textured cloths that pick up dirt on multiple floor types (glazed tile, laminate, finished wood, linoleum, vinyl, and quartz). They also kill bacteria, including Salmonella enterica and Influenza Virus Type A2. Available in three scents.

How to use:

Snap onto sweeper head, mop floor surface, and allow to dry. Dispose of cloth.

Where to buy:

Walmart.com ($7.97 for 24 cloths)

selling a house with pets
Source: (Amazon)

12. Ubbi Steel Odor-Locking Diaper Pail

Why we recommend it:

Cat owner Kristine Gill, writing in Real Simple, banished her home’s kitty litter smell by emptying the waste into this powder-coated steel pail. (She also scoops the litter box daily but said unless she carried the waste outside immediately, the odor lingered.) This pail’s locking lid and rubber seal keep odor from seeping out, and it fits any standard-size garbage bags. Plus it comes in twelve colors.

How to use:

Dump the litter box waste into the pail and down into the bag, which anchors under the lid. Slide the top closed to seal shut.

Where to buy:

Amazon.com ($69.99)

13. Reopet Silicone Pet Food Mat

Why we recommend it:

While you’re keeping your home show-ready, protect your floors from spilled food and water with this waterproof, non-toxic mat. It has a raised outer border to guard against spills and comes in six colors.

How to use:

Rinse or wipe clean. Also dishwasher safe.

Where to buy:

Amazon.com ($9.99)

14. Scotts EZ Seed Patch & Repair Sun & Shade

Why we recommend it:

If you don’t have a St. Augustine lawn or sod, which you can cover with plugs or sod pieces from a garden center, this product will grow grass that fills in those bare spots. It includes a combination of high-performance seed, continuous-release lawn food, and growing material that keeps the seed from drying out. (Note: It takes at least two weeks for seedlings to develop, so don’t expect an overnight fix.)

How to use:

Rake the bald spot to loosen the soil, apply the seed, the water lightly each day (or as needed, depending on the weather) for at least two weeks.

Where to buy:

Target.com ($12.99 for 3.75 lb.)

selling a house with pets
Source: (Target, Walmart, Amazon)

15. Minwax Gel Stain

Why we recommend it:

For scratches on natural wood doors, the Family Handyman website recommends Minwax Gel Stain, which doesn’t drip, to mask the damage.

How to use:

Sand the scratches lightly with a fine sanding block, feathering into the undamaged portion. Wipe off all dust. Apply stain with a dry brush, wiping with a rag dipped in thinner to avoid blotches. (Start with a lighter stain, which you can darken, or mix a few colors to get the right shade.)

Where to buy:

Walmart.com ($5.49 for a half pint)

16. Minwax Wood Hardener

Why we recommend it:

For windowsills and other wooden areas that your pet has chewed, a liquid wood hardener will bind and reinforce the area without having to replace it outright.

How to use:

Smooth the affected area with 200-grit sandpaper, then apply the hardener with a paintbrush according to the product’s instructions. Add epoxy filler as necessary with a putty knife, then sand and paint.

Where to buy:

Lowe’s ($12.98 for 16 oz.)

selling a house with pets
Source: (Walmart, Lowes)

According to a national survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association, dogs are in the most common pet, living in about 60 million households, followed by cats (47 million households). For simplicity’s sake we’ve focused on products for these two types of pets, but if you need more guidance, check out HomeLight’s guide on How to Sell a House with Pets, which has pro tips for fish, horses, birds, and rabbits!

Selling a house with pets: Make it easier with the right supplies

The bottom line? While it’s reasonable to think you might encounter a fellow animal lover while selling a house with pets, top-selling real estate agents like Pete Veres, of Albuquerque, N.M., advise not taking the chance on bad smells or obvious signs that Pets. Live. Here.

“It all depends on the home. A lot of my clients, you won’t even know they have a pet, and with other people, it’s really difficult,” said Veres.

Veres recommends a thorough cleaning and refers sellers to local vendors, who clean and deodorize the carpeting. He’ll also note during walk-through minor repairs, such as filling scratches from claws in doors and molding. A professional carpet cleaning costs an average of about $24 to $48 per room nationwide, plus extra for “steam cleaning” to extract stubborn stains and odors.

selling a house with pets
Matt ODell on Unsplash

Once you’ve done the basic cleaning and prep work, then having your pet-friendly stock of cleaning solutions and products on hand can save you in the case of a surprise home showing.

And remember, moving can be stressful for pets, too. The ASPCA recommends placing food or treats inside your pet’s crate so that they become acclimated to getting inside for showings or moving day, especially if they haven’t spent much time in crates or cars. Perhaps have them eat their meals in the crate with the door shut.

Don’t forget to reward them with playtime after crate time—think of it as one way to reduce your moving anxiety, too!

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