Most of us love our pets like they are truly members of the family. Occasionally, that bond is tested when our loveable fur ball has an accident on the carpet. Getting rid of the stain and odor in your carpet can seem like an impossible task. In this article we walk you through all the steps you’ll need to make it seem as if your pet’s accident never happened.
The most important thing is quick action! Cleaning poop or urine as soon as possible keeps the stain from setting and the odor from embedding into the carpet. Both cats and dogs rely on their sense of smell to tell them things about their surroundings. Getting rid of the odor completely is critical to keep your pet from thinking that the spot is where it should go potty every time.
Before You Begin to Clean
No matter how close you are to your pet, you should always protect yourself when cleaning up its waste. Cat and dog feces can carry all sorts of parasites and germs which don’t hurt your pet, but can make you very sick. Wearing gloves and washing your hands thoroughly after you’re done is the best protection against this.
Once you’ve removed as much solid waste from your carpet as possible, throw it away immediately, preferably outside, to keep the smell from sticking around. Having your ‘tools’ handy in one convenient spot before an accident happens can help you clean up quicker and reduce hassle. Keep some cloth rags, a pooper scooper, and cleaning agents in an easy to reach location.
How to Clean Pet Urine From Carpet
1. Absorb Excess Liquid
The faster you can get as much urine out of our carpet, the less chance it has to seep deep into the carpet and padding underneath where it is harder, if not impossible, to clean thoroughly. Carpet fibers will soak up urine very quickly so you need to move fast. Once it gets under the first few layers of carpet, urine odor can be very hard to get rid of.
As soon as you discover that your pet has wet the carpet, grab a towel you don’t mind throwing away and place it on the spot. Gently apply pressure to help absorb as much urine as possible. It’s helpful to leave this towel in place for about 10 minutes. If you don’t have time or don’t want to hang around urine, you can use a heavy phone book. Once you think the towel has absorbed as much as it can, grab another one and repeat the process.
2. Wet the Area
Pour some cold water on the area, starting at the edges of the stain and slowly moving towards the center. This keeps the stain spot from spreading. The water will lift any urine that is setting into the carpet fibers.
3. Use an Enzyme Cleaner
Enzyme cleaners like Nilodor 128, are great at removing urine. They are non-toxic and very safe. The enzymes break down the organic compounds in the stain, including those that cause lingering odor. Spray the enzyme cleaner directly on the stain, following the manufacturer’s guidance. Enzyme cleaners may need to sit on the stain for awhile, so make sure you read the instructions for best results.
Keep In Mind:
If you have a wool or silk carpet, DO NOT use enzyme cleaners as they can damage the organic fibers in what are usually very expensive carpets. On other carpets, try testing first (maybe before your pet has an accident) on a hidden spot to make sure the cleaner you use won’t discolor the carpet.
4. Absorb the Cleaner
Use another cloth or paper towel to soak up any excess cleaner. You can use the method of using a heavy object like a phone book. Leave the pressed cloth overnight. The next morning the stain and any odor should be gone. You can wash the towel or throw it away. We suggest you wash it and keep it for next time.
How to Clean Pet Poop From Carpet
1. Remove Any Solids
Before treating the stain, you have to get any solid poop off the carpet. We recommend a pooper scooper but you can also use your hand inside a plastic bag. Just turn the bag inside out and use it to pick up the poop so you won’t have to touch it.
2. Mix a Solution
Mix one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid, such as Dawn, and one tablespoon of vinegar in a bowl, bucket or spray bottle. Add in two cups of warm water and mix.
3. Sponge the Stain
Dip a clean rag into the mixture and use it to soak the stain a little. Don’t overdo it since you don’t want excess moisture in your carpet. Use another clean cloth to blot the stain gently until the liquid is soaked away from the carpet. Repeat until the stain is gone.
If The Stain Is Persistent
If the stain is really tough to get out, try using a little hydrogen peroxide. This will help lift out the nasty color left by the poop. Use only on light colored carpets since hydrogen peroxide can ‘bleach out’ original colors as well.
4. Apply Enzymes
Enzyme cleaners are very good at destroying the stains and odors from pet accidents. For poop, we recommend the Bissell Professional Stain and Odor cleaner.
If it is a concentrated cleaner, be sure to dilute with water as directed. Apply and leave on the stain per the manufacturer’s instructions.
5. Blot Dry
Using a clean cloth or paper towel, blot up the excess cleaner liquid. Start on the sides of the stain and work towards the middle.
Once the area is completely dry, vacuum the carpet. This will clean up anything leftover and will put your carpet fibers back in their original place.
Here are some other methods that have been proven to remove pet accidents from carpet:
Vinegar and baking soda: Odor from old dried urine can be tricky to get rid of. Baking soda combined with vinegar can remove the stain and deodorize it. First spray vinegar on the area then sprinkle on baking soda. Cover the area with a towel or cloth for 24 hours, then rinse with cold water. Dry with a clean cloth when finished.
Avoid ammonia: Ammonia like that found in bleach won’t really help with pet accidents. As a strong alkali, it will leave behind a slimy, sticky residue and can damage the original carpet fiber. It will also make the odor more likely to return as it may mask it with a strong chemical smell but not actually get rid of it. Once the ammonia odor dissipates, you will still smell urine or poop.
Consider replacing the padding: If you don’t get to the accident quickly enough, perhaps you only discover it after you come home from work, it might not be possible to eliminate the odor. You may have to replace the padding beneath the carpet.
Getting Rid of the Mess
Even the best behaved, best trained pet will have accidents sometimes. It’s key to be ready and treat it as soon as you can. Getting rid of the odor keeps your house from smelling and your pet from remembering that it used that spot before.