How to get the smell of pet urine out of carpet
When your dog accidentally pees on the carpet, follow these steps to get out the odor.
Dog lovers know the benefits that a pet brings to their lives. But, as all pet owners know, accidents happen from time to time.
Some of our furry friends only occasionally slip, whereas others urinate on the carpet more frequently — especially older pets. These smells contain a strong ammonia odor that can stink up the entire home.
So, how can you go about removing dog urine odor from your carpets? Try these proven methods for cleaning up stains and salvaging the carpet.
Clean up any urine that's still wet. If the urine dries, it stains the carpet and increases bacteria growth. To best remove the stain, place a layer of several paper towels over the wet area of the carpet. Walk on the paper towels so that they absorb as much of the pet pee as possible. Removing wet urine reduces the smell.
Neutralize the odor
For new or set-in stains, create a cleaning solution consisting of one part white vinegar to one part water. Vinegar neutralizes the ammonia smell of urine without fading carpet fibers, making it a good choice for cleaning and protecting your carpet.
Learn more at the Angie's List Guide to Carpet Cleaning
Slowly pour the solution on the stained area of the carpet. The solution needs to reach the lower fibers in the carpet to completely neutralize the area. After allowing the carpet to absorb the solution for 10 minutes, use a layer of paper towels to soak up the liquid.
Once the carpet is almost dry — which could be several hours later — sprinkle a little baking soda on the area to absorb the odor. Allow the baking soda to settle into the carpet fibers for about 15 minutes, then vacuum the area. This should remove pet urine odor from the carpet.
Use commercial pet stain removers
The market is filled with commercial pet stain removers, deodorizers and air fresheners. Turn to these products if using vinegar and baking soda fails to remove the urine smell from your home.
Some products work better than others depending on the type of carpet you have, such as natural versus synthetic fibers. Read the label on these products to find the one that can best removes pet odor from carpet.
Hire a carpet cleaning service
If the carpet odors are longstanding and accompany urine stains that you can't remove, contact a professional carpet cleaner. These experts have a wide range of machines and solvents at their disposal to clean your carpet, remove odors and make it look good as new.
Editor's note: This is an edited version of a story originally posted on Oct. 4, 2012.