As much as we love them, our pets do sometimes leave stains on the carpet. Puppies, especially, can have a few accidents during house training. While there are lots of chemical cleaners on the market, you probably have the ingredients to make your own natural stain remover right in your kitchen cabinet. This method is easy and it can be safer for your pet.
Why is natural better?
Your pets can be more sensitive to many chemicals and cleaners than humans are. Since they walk, sit, and lie on the floor, they can come into close contact with any harsh chemicals used. The fewer manufactured chemicals and cleaners you use around your pets, the better.
When your dog or cat leaves a mess on your living room carpet, try this pet-friendly cleaning method.
This method also works on other mild stains that aren’t left by your pet. For instance, if you drop spaghetti sauce on the floor, this method will clean and deodorize without leaving any residue behind.
Before you start
Be sure to act quickly when you have a pet stain. If pet urine soaks through your carpet padding it can be nearly impossible to remove the stain and odor. You may have to replace the carpet or hire a professional carpet cleaner to clean your carpet. Clean the stain right away!
Don’t use a steam cleaner to clean up pet stains. Although this may seem like a good idea, the heat from a steam cleaner can actually bond the protein in pet urine to your carpet fibers. This can make the stain and odor nearly permanent. Just follow the simple method provided here to remove stains naturally and you should get rid of both the stain and any odor rather easily.
For this natural cleaning approach you’ll need:
- Paper towels or towels – paper towels often work best
- Baking soda
Step 1: Blot (no rubbing)
Use a paper towel to blot the area with the stain or accident dry. Do NOT rub the area. Rubbing will only spread the stain or cause it to soak into the carpet, making it permanent. Blot and gently pat the stain with paper towels. You can use a towel but paper towels often work best and you can simply toss them away.
When the paper towel is no longer soaking up the urine, use a new paper towel.
Continue to pat and blot the stain until the area seems reasonably dry.
Step 2: Pour the vinegar mixture on the area
Mix together a solution that is half vinegar and half water. You can use a bucket, water bottle, or spray bottle. Proceed to soak the stained area with this solution of vinegar and water.
The vinegar and water will cut through the stain – helpful if the stain is very stubborn. It also re-wets the stain so you can be sure all of the urine has come out of the carpet. Vinegar – an acid – also neutralizes the ammonia in the pet urine. This helps get rid of the odor.
At this point you can start to scrub hard with paper towels. Make sure you scrub the vinegar and water mixture deep into the fibers in the carpet to remove any pet urine that might still be there.
If the stain is especially bad or really smelly, you can use 100 percent vinegar instead of mixing it with water.
Step 3: Add baking soda and wait
While the area is still wet, add some baking soda and a little of the vinegar and water mixture to it. You may remember from your school chemistry class that vinegar and baking soda mixed together will fizz and crackle and that’s exactly what will start to happen on your carpet. The mixture on your carpet will work to remove the stain and odor. It’s helpful to rub the baking soda on your carpet with your hands or a brush so you can work it deep down into the carpet fiber.
Now you wait. Let the baking soda remain on your carpet until it’s completely dry. This could be overnight or it could be a day or two, depending on how soaked the stain area was and how much of the vinegar and water solution you used.
After the baking soda is thoroughly dry, use your vacuum cleaner to vacuum the baking soda from your carpet. Presto! Your carpet should be as good as new. No more stain and no more odor.