Tips for removing backyard pet odors

Tips for removing backyard pet odors

What can I do to eliminate pet waste odors in my backyard?
— Angie's List member Amber Swope

Andi Schmidt, owner of highly rated Poop B Gone Inc., a pet waste removal service in Mt. Prospect, Ill., suspects urine is the culprit. "Fecal matter dries up and stops smelling in the sun, but urine will soak into wood or just sit there on the concrete," she says. She suggests making sure the dogs urinate on grass or into gravel atop dirt.

She also recommends a disinfectant, such as Top Performance Lemon-256, to clean the area if it's concrete. She applies disinfectant at no charge for clients whose dogs leave waste on concrete. Her waste removal service fees start at $39 for two monthly visits.

Chuck Peterman, owner of highly rated Yard Patrol pet waste removal in Plainfield, Ill., suggests cleaning all waste up as soon as possible. "I recommend using a hose and plain water to dissolve leftover waste into the soil," he says. "I wouldn't use any solvents or cleaners, in order to keep the decomposition a natural and organic process."

He also recommends investigating the source of the problem. "If the dog's waste is always very soft and runny, and this is the reason for the difficulty in cleanup and smell, the next step would be to look into the pet's diet," he says.

Paul Chesler, president of the Association of Professional Animal Waste Specialists, suggests avoiding deodorizers. "They don't work on grass very much in my experience," he says. A good pooper scooper will check every inch of the yard, he says, and that kind of meticulous care will minimize odors over time.

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