We returned our foster puppies to the animal shelter on Wednesday. It was a little sad but also a tremendous relief. We’ve both been looking forward to sleeping through the night and having a clean house again. Will was most concerned about the carpet which the puppies were never supposed to encounter but of course they broke out one day and pooped all over it. And I do mean all over it. Anyway, we decided to rent a carpet cleaner this weekend and do our spring cleaning a bit early. (It was about 60 degrees yesterday so it felt like spring even though it’s still February.)
Being the green-minded folks we are, commercial carpet cleaner solution just didn’t feel like an option. I did some internet research and one lady suggested running vinegar through the machine but admitted it took a long time for the odors to dissipate. We’ve been using quite a bit of vinegar lately for cleaning and the house was already smelling a bit like a fish and chips shop (do any of you actually use the term “chippery”?) so we decided to use a very diluted vinegar mixture (one cup vinegar per two gallons water). It worked very well and since the weather was balmy we were able to air out the house pretty well.
Vinegar and baking soda are often touted as miracle green cleaners and so far they’ve worked pretty well for us. To deodorize puppy laundry, I would soak everything in vinegar and water for a few hours (in the washing machine), then wash with a combination of our normal biodegradable laundry detergent and about a cup of baking soda. For personal deodorant, I’ve been using a mixture of baking soda and corn starch. [I have not yet been brave enough to try coconut oil as a deodorant; it just sounds gross.] I used vinegar as a hair conditioner for a little while but couldn’t get over the lingering smell. I also discovered that if I brush my hair immediately before washing it, I get almost no tangles.
Of course, we’ve been using Kroger brand distilled white vinegar because we’re cheap and we’re going through it in great quantity. For our house to really smell like a chippery, we’ll have to upgrade to the fancy malt vinegar stuff. But I think I’ll save that for the pub.