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How to Clean Up Dog Urine from Carpet

clean up dog urine

Ooops – I made a mistake. I’m sorry!

Ooops – your dog just made a mistake and now it’s time to clean up dog urine from the carpet. Before you get too frustrated, remember that accidents happen, even with the best trained dogs. Unfortunately, when your pet has an accident on your carpet, you can’t just shampoo the carpet, because soap and water can’t eliminate the odor causing urine crystals.

Step 1 – Extract the Urine

It’s a bit trickier to clean up dog urine from carpet is than hardwood (see our article about How to Clean Dog Urine from Hardwood Floors), primarily because it’s hard to see if you absorbed all the urine as it soaks into the carpet.

For a wet urine “accident”, take some paper towels (or regular) and press them into the carpet where you think the urine is. Apply pressure to the paper towels (easiest is to step on them with your feet and use your body weight). You want to repeat this until wetness is no longer absorbed by the paper towels. Alternatively, you can also try sucking out the wet urine with a carpet cleaner. Also make sure to check the surrounding areas because if your dog was marking, you might have missed some spots.

If the urine spots have already dried, you can still find these spots with a black light. The urine stains will fluoresce under the ultra violet light in a darkened room. You can have a little fun with this and pretend you’re filming your own CSI episode. Use a sweeping motion and gradually move farther away from the generally smelly location or accident spot you’ve already discovered. The pet urine that you’re looking for should show up as a yellow/greenish color. You may be surprised to find a stain farther away than you thought. Put some tape around the spots you find so that when you put the lights back on you know where to clean.

Step 2 – Getting the Smell/Urine Out

Before you try any of the below solutions, test an inconspicuous spot on your carpet first to ensure the cleaning solution you use will not damage your carpet.

One of the best home solutions is white vinegar (do not use other types of vinegar – only use white vinegar). Some people use it straight and others dilute it with water. Pour the white vinegar over the urine spot and let it sit long enough to reach the bottom carpet fibers for fifteen minutes on a fresh stain and at least an hour on old stains. As before, soak up the white vinegar with paper towels (or regular towels) or suck out the liquid with your carpet cleaner. Make sure wetness no longer comes through the paper towels. Then allow the area to air dry.

If you can’t or prefer not to use white vinegar, then you should check out some of these store bought solutions:

Rocco & Roxie’s Professional Strength Stain & Odor Eliminator
This professional strength bio-enzymatic formula guarantees to virtually eliminate any stain and odor from urine, feces, vomit, and other organic stains. Discourages pets’ attraction to stained areas by making odors disappear while removing stains from carpeting, rugs or upholstery. It has earned the Seal of Approval from the trusted Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI).

Nature’s Miracle
Nature’s Miracle is one of the top brands to clean up dog urine and has a large variety of pet stain and odor removal products. Check out their Nature’s Miracle Deep Cleaning Carpet Shampoo.

Bissell 2X Pet Stain & Odor Formula
You love your pet. But you don’t have to love the mess. Bissell 2X Pet Stain & Odor Formula is designed to loosen and remove the stains and soils that your pet leaves behind. Since it contains odor control technology, the formula will remove odors and help prevent your pet from going back and soiling the same area again. In addition, it will help neutralize general pet odors so that your home feels and smells fresh.

Important Tips:

  • Remember to always test an inconspicuous spot on your carpet first to ensure the cleaning solution you use will not damage your carpet.
  • Be patient – to completely remove dog urine odor, the process may need to be repeated several times over a few days or even weeks.
  • Never use Windex or ammonia to clean a urine spot. Dog urine is partially made of ammonia and thus if you clean with it, your dog will think it is ok to go back and mark the spot.
  • As with all household chemical projects, you should wear rubber gloves.

 

How to Clean Dog Urine from Hardwood Floors

How to Clean Dog Urine from Hardwood FloorsNo matter how well your dog is trained, dog accidents happen – perhaps your best friend is under the weather or you have a new puppy. As a pet parent, you need to forgive, move on and clean up the mess.

If the accident happens on a hardwood floor, you’ll need to clean up the mess as well as the smell. Sometimes the human nose might not pick up the smell, but dogs will as they have much more sensitive noses. It’s important to remove the smell for them so that they don’t return to the same area and have another “accident”.

There are a few ways to clean dog urine (and other mistakes) from hardwood floors.

 

Store Bought Solutions:

Shout Pets Enzymatic Hard Surface Stain & Odor Remover
This product contains a complex enzymatic formula to remove tough stains, odors and odor-causing bacteria from hard surface areas. Apparently, it also prevent dogs from repeat marking and works on old stains. It’s made to tackle pet vomit, urine, and feces.

Nature’s Miracle
Nature’s Miracle has a large variety of stain and odor remove products. You might want to try their Nature’s Miracle Hard Floor Stain and Odor Remover or the Nature’s Miracle Stain and Odor Remover.

STINK FREE Instantly! Urine Odor Remover for Pet Urine
STINK FREE Instantly Urine Odor Remover for Pet Urine is an aggressive, multi-functional (non-enzyme) formula works instantly on contact. We were surprised it was a non-enzyme formula, but it has great reviews on Amazon, so we decided to include this as an option. Apparently, it eliminates both the odor and its source through the process of oxidation, which breaks down and changes chemical compounds into odorless and inert substances. It’s also powerful, fast acting, non-toxic, non-flammable and biodegradable.

Homemade Solutions:

White Vinegar and Water:
White vinegar is a common natural household cleanser. It’s acidic and dissolves mineral salt deposits, a basic component of dog urine. Because of it’s strength, dilute the white vinegar by at least half. Use a sponge or mop to clean the area thoroughly.

Baking Soda and Water:
If the white vinegar and water solution does not work, you can increase the odor removing strength by adding baking soda to the white vinegar and water solution. Pour baking soda onto the area first, then add the diluted vinegar-and-water mixture. Note that it will likely make a fizzing sound. Baking soda has odor-absorbency properties and can help with particularly tough odors.
Alternatively, stir baking soda into water until it forms a paste, and scrub the paste into the affected area. Let it sit for several hours, and rinse it with fresh water.

Lemon and Salt:
Pour some lemon juice into a bowl and add a handful of salt. Use the salt and lemon juice solution to scrub into the urine-affected spot.

Important Tips:

  • Remember to always test an inconspicuous spot on your hardwood floor first to ensure the cleaning solution you use will not damage your hardwood floors! Hardwood floors have many different types of finishes and may react differently depending on the solution.
  • Be patient – to completely remove dog urine odor, the process may need to be repeated several times over a few days or even weeks.
  • Never use Windex or ammonia to clean a urine spot. Dog urine partially made of ammonia and thus if you clean with it, your dog will think it is ok to go back and mark the spot.
  • No matter how frustrating in terms of time, always let wood dry thoroughly before repeating applications of a cleaner.
  • As with all household chemical projects, you should wear rubber gloves.

Check out our other post on How to Clean Up Dog Urine from Carpet.

Hello Dog – How to Properly Greet a Dog

Hello Dog ! Many people and hello dogchildren love dogs and would like to greet them in a friendly way. Despite their good intentions, sometimes humans and dogs are “lost in translation“. Many people use approaches are not really dog friendly or at least a dog does not understand it to be friendly.

The easiest way to say ” hello dog ” is to remember the acronym WAIT:
Wait to make sure a dog looks friendly.
Ask the owner’s permission to pet the dog.
Invite the dog to sniff the person before petting.
Touch the dog gently on its back, away from its face and tail.

Some other good tips:
– Let the dog approach you first
– Don’t scream or speak loudly around a dog
– Let the dog sniff your hand
– Do not pat the dog on their head. Approach them on their back or on the side of their body
– When petting a dog, don’t tap them. Use a soft smooth stroke from the head towards the tail
– Don’t grab their tail

Here’s a fantastic illustration on how NOT to greet a dog:

Hello Dog

Want to learn more? Check out our post on How to Read Dog Body Language!

Dog Belly Bands – do they work?

Dog Belly Band

When Kobi, our male Havanese dog, was a puppy and I was house-training him, there were a few times I would get totally frustrated with the whole process. So I decided to try out a dog belly band. Since we live in a highrise, I couldn’t just open the door to let him out to do his business in the backyard. I thought the dog belly band might be a good way to help house-train him. As a human, this appeared to be a big signal: “Hey puppy, this is not the time to pee. You’ve got a belly band on. It’s covering your weenie – so please respect and don’t pee when you’re wearing it.”

Unfortunately, Kobi just didn’t understand my human logic and still peed in the apartment while wearing the dog belly band. So what did I do? Well as a New Yorker, I thought I must have gotten the wrong model and needed an upgrade. Clearly all these people on the internet are selling belly bands so they must work (right?).

So I upgraded from one similar in construction to the above photo to another dog belly band which was more like a pouch and a belt and made out of suede. (Looking back, I realize how absurd this is.)

Alas, Kobi was happy to keep peeing while wearing all of them. The dog belly bands fit Kobi fine, but he just never understood them as a deterrent to pee in the house.

As a result, I cannot recommend the dog belly band. In hindsight, I should have first asked myself: How many dog belly bands have you actually seen in use? Do any of your friends’ dogs have them? I’m guessing the majority of them don’t. Perhaps there are a few successful dog belly band owners out there and we’re happy to get their feedback. In the meanwhile, save your money and pass on this dog product purchase.

For house training, we recommend skipping the dog belly band and using the traditional crate method. Also, check out our Clean Up & Indoor Dog Potty shop section.