Written by Anna Hollisey
Whether you’re potty training a new puppy or rescue dog, your faithful companion is getting old and experiencing a few accidents, or there’s just been a one off little mishap, every dog owner will at some point have to clean up pee. Don’t panic. You can rescue your furniture, clothes, or upholstery with our time-saving hacks for cleaning dog urine!
If you’re here, there’s probably a damp splat of dog pee on your carpet. And if you’re wondering why it smells so truly terrible, you’re not alone. Even the smallest puddle of urine can produce a horrifying odor in a matter of hours.
Why? Dog urine contains ammonia. As it dries out, ammonia turns into methanethiol, which is a bad-smelling gas. That’s what you’re sniffing, and that’s why dog pee needs urgent attention as soon as it happens.
Although you can buy some great carpet sprays, did you know that it’s possible to make your own carpet freshener at home?
All you need is baking soda and, if you want, some essential oil. (Choose an oil that you know is safe for your dog – lavender is a good choice – because some essential oils can be dangerous for animals).
You’ll need a container for shaking the powder, such as a sugar or flour shaker. All you need to do is layer a cup of baking soda with a couple of drops of oil. Repeat the layer again, then seal and shake. Keep it for a few hours to develop a stronger scent or use it right away.
To apply, shake generously all over the carpet. Ideally you’ll now leave it overnight; if kids or pets are incoming, try to leave it alone for at least 20 minutes before vacuuming it up again. The result: refreshed, lightly scented carpet.
Old dog pee stains can become intensely annoying. But did you know that regular dishwashing soap can remove most stains from upholstery? Mix it up with warm water and scrub into the stain. If that doesn’t work, it’s time to bring in the hydrogen peroxide. Choose a 3% solution – and be sure to test it on the underside of a cushion in case it fades your upholstery.
Something’s started to smell funny… but you didn’t see your dog doing their business in the house, and you can’t see a puddle. When you just can’t find the source of that smell, here’s a cool trick. You’ll need a UV flashlight (the type used to check currency is genuine). Scan the carpet and the flashlight will show old urine left by cats, dogs or rodents. Beware though: this ‘illuminating’ hack could give you a whole new To Do list.
We don’t replace our flooring very often but when we do, it’s worth including our pets in the decision!
Whether your animals are young or old, bleach-cleanable carpet is an investment that you’ll likely appreciate for many years. Ask in the showroom for carpets that can be scrubbed with bleach: many modern carpets can be beautifully restored with a diluted bleach solution.
If you’re not keen on carpet, how about one of these:
We’ve already mentioned the natural wonder-cleaners: vinegar and baking soda. Here’s a fun cleaning hack that combines them both (and requires no prep). Pour undiluted white vinegar liberally over the stained area, then sprinkle generously with baking soda. They’ll fizz and bubble, getting into the carpet fibers and absorbing uric acid. Leave to dry and then vacuum very well.