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How can I Remove Pet Hair from my Clothing?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 17, 2024
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As pet owners know, it can be immensely difficult to remove pet hair from your clothing. Cats and dogs have short, pointy hair that seems to be ideally suited for clinging to fabric of all types and colors. A number of products are marketed to help remove pet hair from fabric, and by combining these products with steps to reduce the amount of fur in your life, you can keep your clothing clean and fur-free.

The first step you should take is to remove pet hair from your environment. While shaving your pets might seem like a tempting option, there are less drastic approaches to take. Regular cleaning will assist greatly: sweep hard floors and vacuum carpeting on a frequent basis to take up pet hair and get it out of the house. Use furniture covers to protect your furniture and wash them frequently, especially if your pets are fond of a particular couch or chair.

There are also some measures which can be taken to reduce the amount of hair on your pets themselves. Use a pet hair brush to remove dead hair before it gets a chance to disperse itself around the house. If you have a dog, bathe it frequently to remove dust and hair, which will lead to an overall reduction around the house. If you have a cat, consider using a specially designed pet hair roller directly on your cat to remove loose hair. For large animals like horses, cows, and goats, groom them frequently to reduce the amount of shedding, in addition to using designated “farm” clothes that are not worn indoors.

After you have reduced the amount of pet hair that your clothing can pick up, you can focus on ways to remove it from your clothes. Many companies design lint brushes or hair rollers that can be run over clothing to pick up hair. For a cheaper solution, you can use duct tape or any type of thick, sticky tape to remove pet hair from your clothing. You can also try whacking your more sturdy clothes against a hard surface to remove the hair: beating will loosen trapped hair, and should of course be done outside. You should also wash garments regularly to remove any pet hair.

It is also an excellent idea to hang your clothing or fold it and put it away. Pets often enjoy snuggling with clothing, especially when it is warm and freshly washed. After you have gone to great lengths to remove pet hair from your clothing, do not give your pets an opportunity to cover it in fur again. In addition, try to keep pet clothes separate from regular or dress clothes. If you take your dogs on walks or roughhouse with your cats, use designated clothing that you don't mind getting a bit dirty. When you are ready to go out to work or a social event, pull your hair-free regular clothes out of the closet, and avoid handling your animals after you are dressed.

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Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a WiseGeek researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
By anon1001121 — On Mar 11, 2019

Bathing every day can remove skin micro "bugs" that help protect the immune system of your pet - a "first barrier". With a great diet and other care any pet should not have "skin" issues. That said many shampoos for pets and humans are highly toxic.

You remove oils that can take days to go from his skin to the hairs.

This is not a great way to prevent allergies.

By ysmina — On Feb 19, 2013

@turkay1- I know that this isn't an option for most people, but hand-washing and line-drying clothes is the best way to get rid of pet hair.

You could machine wash clothes and then line-dry them. Giving them a shake before hanging them gets rid of most of the hair that's stuck on the clothes.

They also sell these special pet gloves to use while bathing pets to remove all the loose hair. My sister uses one and said that it's great.

By discographer — On Feb 19, 2013

One thing that reduces hair fall out immensely with my cats is omega 3 and biotin supplements. I've noticed that since I've been given them these, their hair doesn't fall out as much.

By candyquilt — On Feb 18, 2013

@anon120540-- I agree with you. The washer and dryer seem to make pet hair stick to clothing even more.

Fabric softener seems to help a little, but I'm still trying to figure out how to remove cat and dog hair during laundry.

By anon120540 — On Oct 21, 2010

The washer and dryer really isn't removing any hair.

By anon77319 — On Apr 14, 2010

I like this post. I have a pet dog with a long hair and I clean it every day and bathe frequently. I know a few pet owners find it difficult to do it but it’s not that difficult. I love my pet and enjoy doing it.

By anon40910 — On Aug 11, 2009

I have both cats and rabbits indoors. I've found that using a water mister on my hands or the surface to be de-haired, helps the fur cling to my hands as I roll the hair off into balls. They sell rubber "pet" brushes, but I found that a rubber squeegee and mister can remove lots of hair fast from a large area.

I found by accident that a chunk of packing foam from a disk drive (don't know exact type - maybe closed cell?) I cut it into a brick about 2x4 and 3 inches long. I use it to roll up the hair by rubbing the dry sponge in a circular motion on my oriental carpets and carpeted stairways.

Last tip - as you wash the hairy stuff last on wash day, be sure to use a dryer sheet. it helps the hair release from the fabrics so it collects on the lint screen - clean that lint screen often. I even clean it during and after a "hair" load is run.

By anon39273 — On Jul 31, 2009

I had a lab that I bathed every day since it was 6 weeks old. If you get all the soap out, it is just the same as washing your own hair. He never had any skin problem or hair problem. Most people don't get all the soap out, which as you can imagine, would cause your own head to be dry and itch.

I took him to the basement where I had a short hose hooked to the faucet. He didn't mind at all since he'd been bathed every day since he was so little.

I used the hose to direct water everywhere I needed it to be, so he was completely rinsed. Took about 15 minutes overall. Clean dog, clean house. No allergies.

By anon38921 — On Jul 29, 2009

I don't like the idea of bathing pets frequently. That might cause skin problems for the dog.

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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