Tips for removing pet stains and odors from carpet

Most people who keep animals in the house know that the joys of pet ownership come with a few prices. Even pets that have been trained to use a litter box may have an "accident" from time to time, leaving stains on your carpet and causing unpleasant odors.

Here are a few tips for eliminating both stains and odors from your carpet:

Removing stains

Avoid using steam cleaners or strong chemicals. According to the Humane Society, a steam cleaner will only make pet stains and odors worse, as the heat will cause the protein to bond to the carpet's fibers.

Chemicals such as ammonia or vinegar not only give off unpleasant odors of their own, they might actually make the spot more attractive to your pet as a place to relieve itself in the future.

You will have much better results if you use an extractor or wet vac. Use water and not cleaning compounds. Not only is water more effective, it's also healthier. Cleaning compounds can give off small amounts of toxic chemicals, creating dangerous indoor air pollution that you and your family might inhale.

Removing odors

Pets stains can also cause odors that cling to you carpet. Two simple, inexpensive and natural ways to fight pet odor involves using baking soda and corn starch.

Sprinkle the baking soda over the affected area and use a broom to work it into the carpet. Sprinkle on a second layer, and let it sit for about 24 hours. Then, vacuum up the baking soda, and the unwanted odor should be gone.

For stronger smells, you might want to add some water to the baking soda, and then allow the paste to dry before applying the vacuum. The procedure is basically the same if you use corn starch, although in this case, you'll definitely want to use water as well.

Call in the professionals

If you can still see the stain or smell the odor after trying the methods listed above, you should consider hiring a professional carpet cleaning company. Sign in to Angie’s List to read trusted consumer reviews on highly rated carper cleaners in the Chicago area.


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