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How to Get Dog Pee Smell Out of Carpet Without Vinegar

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By Nicole Cosgrove

akita inu puppy peed in the carpet

All dogs—puppies or otherwise—use the bathroom inside the house at one point or another. Although this is an inevitable part of canine ownership, living with the smell of dog urine in your home is not. With the right technique, you should be able to remove the smell.

Although many people prefer using a vinegar method on carpet because of its effectiveness, it is not the only product that can remove the odor. In this article, learn how to clean dog pee from carpet without vinegar.

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Why Does Dog Urine Smell?

Whenever a dog pees, the mess might not smell right away, but it often smells as it sits. The reason behind this is that the urine undergoes chemical changes. For example, it leaves behind alkaline salt and bacterial gas. When mixed with humidity, the smell gets even worse, given that humidity creates a breeding ground for bacteria.1

Cute puppy lying on carpet near wet spot
Image Credit: Africa Studio, Shutterstock

Why Do People Use Vinegar to Clean Up Dog Pee?

Often, people use white or apple cider vinegar to neutralize the smell of the urine spot. When baking soda is poured over the area, it reacts to the vinegar and properly removes the stain and odor.

Although it is effective, the vinegar and baking soda method can be messy. Not only will the mixture have to sit on the floor for a while, but you will also have to vacuum it up. If you don’t want to make your house messy or have different reasons for not wanting to use vinegar, you have other options.

vinegar cleaner hand with glove
Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock

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How to Remove Dog Pee Smell From Carpet Without Vinegar

When it comes to removing the pee smell from your carpet, the task can be tough. If the pee has set and dried in the carpet, the smell may seem impenetrable.

Nevertheless, here is how to remove dog pee smell from carpet without vinegar:
  • Find the Source: Find where the pee is located on your carpet. If the pee is wet, the task should be easier. However, you might have more trouble finding it if the pee has dried.
  • Soak Up Wet Urine: If the urine is wet, try to soak it up. Place paper towels over the affected area, and put pressure on it. If the pee is dry, though, there will be no point in trying to soak it up.
  • Neutralize the Affected Area: Neutralize the area by buying an enzymatic cleaner. You should be able to find one of these cleaners at any grocery store or pet store. Follow the instructions on the package.
  • Work It In: If you have used the cleaner and the smell or stain remains, use the cleaner again. This time, use a toothbrush or another small device to gently scrub into the carpet fibers.
  • Add Spray: After you clean following the cleaner’s instructions, add a Febreze Animal Odor Eliminator. This spray isn’t scented like most traditional Febreze products, but it helps to eliminate the residual smell.

At this point, the smell should be out of the carpet, but you might need to repeat the process if the urine has been sitting for too long. If the smell remains after three cleaning sessions, contact a professional.

Cute puppy sitting on carpet near wet spot
Image Credit: Africa Studio, Shutterstock

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Tips for Cleaning Up Dog Pee From Your Carpets

Getting dog pee out of your carpets is tough. Here are other tips you might want to use to make sure the scent is gone for good.

1. Treat It Sooner Rather Than Later

The longer the urine sits, the harder it will be to remove the smell. Instead of procrastinating, try to treat the affected area immediately. Not only will the home smell better, but you also won’t have to scrub as much!

person cleaning the carpet
Image Credit: VGstockstudio, Shutterstock

2. Get On All Fours

When finding the affected location and treating it, don’t be afraid to tap into your inner dog by getting on all fours. That way, you can see the entire area up close and make sure you are treating it appropriately.

3. Use Blacklight

If you have gotten on all fours to the point that your knees are sore but still can’t find the affected area, you might need to use a blacklight. This will let you see where the spot is when your natural eyes can’t see it. Under the light, the dog pee area will show up yellow or dull green. Smell around the area to confirm that it is pee.

4. Use Dish Soap on the Stain

Say that you use the enzyme cleaner, and it effectively removes the odor but not the stain; you can use dish soap instead. Mix a bit of soap with warm water, and pour it on the stain. Continue to blot the carpet using a paper towel or rag to remove the stain.

person cleaning carpet
Image Credit: Andrey_Popov, Shutterstock

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Final Thoughts

Dogs are cute and lovable members of our family, but they can have accidents on the floor. When that happens, you want to pick up the mess sooner rather than later. Unfortunately, that isn’t always an option, such as when you’re away from the house or the dog pees in a hard-to-see area.

Either way, cleaning the affected area is a must once the smell gets to you. Although you can use vinegar, an enzyme cleaner may be more effective and less messy for cleaning up the issue. We hope that this article has helped you to remove the urine and get your home smelling fresh once again.

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Featured Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock

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