Suck It Up! Controlling Fur/Hair in Your Facility
By Mel Forbes
Photo by Health Technology
Hair! Hair! Hair! Everywhere. It’s on the floors, the ceiling tiles, window seals, in the groom room, underneath the desk, in the intake vents of our HVAC systems, and sometimes we even find that stray strand of fur that somehow made its way into our mouths.
Every day we are excited to see our pet friends come into our facilities for a fun filled day of play. But with them comes fur. Cleaning areas where loose fur can accumulate is a repetitive process that needs to be done every day to get the best results. Just like brushing our teeth or taking a shower regularly, we need to “just clean it”. The simpler we make removing fur/hair, the more likely it will end up getting done every day.
While there are a variety of different vacuums and vacuum systems available, one of the simplest and most effective types is a commercial back pack vacuum. These vacuums come with a wand that can reach ceiling tiles, intake vents, tops of book shelves, behind the washer and dryer machines, rubber flooring, the front counter, computer keyboards (don’t forget to vacuum the fan for the CPU), cages, crates, drop ceiling T–Bar, chairs, and puppy playground equipment. Back pack vacuums are a great tool to use because they reduce fatigue, are easy to maneuver, extremely quiet, efficient and can be fun to use.
Fur that has fallen off of our pet friends can hold a lot of odor and, in some cases, even harbor ringworm and Walking Dandruff (also called Cheyletiellosis, which is a mite.) So let’s “suck it up”! Vacuuming intake vents in the ceiling of your facility should be done every week during your designated detail cleaning day.
Recently, H3N2 (influenza A virus) has become a major concern since cases are popping up all over the country. Dogs are getting sick from the air they breathe and from direct contact with the virus on hard surfaces. Implementing a vacuum protocol to clean intake vents will remove dust and fur, therefore increasing air movement in and out of the building. Vacuuming and cleaning all washable surfaces with a cleaner disinfectant designed for animal care facilities are two tried and true, best–practice ways to help prevent outbreaks.
Every time you vacuum your facility, pay close attention to removing hair/fur from underneath and on top of the cages and kennels. Hard to reach places are easily overlooked and can harbor “tumble weed” like hair balls that roll out onto the floor at the most inopportune time, like during a tour with a potential customer.
Two of the top criteria customers use to decide if they are going to leave their pets with you are: How does the facility look and how does it smell? Daily vacuum protocols to remove fur/hair will keep your facility looking and smelling incredible. Your customers will love you for it!
Mel Forbes is an animal care cleaning consultant for Health Technology Professional Products Inc. Mel’s passion for teaching a simplified approach to sanitation in animal care facilities has been the hallmark of his 13-year career. Working closely with veterinary, pet boarding, animal sheltering and pet retail staff, Mel is able to identify areas of major concern and helped implement a leading brand of products and equipment that are simple for staff to use. Mel is proud to be a part of the Health Technology Professional Products Inc. team specializing in animal care cleaning solutions since 1989.