Messy accidents are part of life for any dog owner, and if not promptly cleaned up, can trigger more accidents later, especially for young puppies in the process of house training. While homemade remedies might not match up to professional enzyme cleaners, they’re easy to use in a pinch. For your convenience, we’ve come up with the four best ways to clean up dog pee and keep the smell from lingering in your house. Read on for what you’ll need and how to go about it.
The 4 Home Remedies to Get Rid of Dog Urine Smells & Stains
1. Use Paper Towels for Absorbency
Young puppies don’t pee very much, but nearly any dog can have an accident in the house. Bigger dogs, especially, can leave shockingly big puddles of urine that are hard to clean up.
Your very first step is to physically remove as much urine as possible, and with it, the bulk of the smell. High-quality paper towels are the go-to solution here, and you can liberally dab them over any accidents to soak up the worst of your mess. Don’t be afraid to use as many paper towels as needed—get as much moisture soaked up as possible.
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2. Mix Your Own Vinegar Cleaning Spray
Though you’ve soaked up most of the urine already and might not smell it, your dog definitely can and will remember that spot in the future. Enzyme cleaners are usually the go-to, but white vinegar and plain old water work in a pinch to help erase any trace of dog pee from your floor.
To mix your own vinegar cleaning spray, start with a heavily diluted 50/50 mix of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. After soaking up the accident with paper towels, liberally spray this mix onto the area and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. This maximizes the chances of it totally erasing any urine smell you or your dog can detect. For older accidents, you can use a sponge to scrub at the spot and let it sit a few minutes longer.
3. Baking Soda Treatment for Lingering Odors
The vast majority of the time, white vinegar should do the trick to remove unpleasant urine odors from your carpet or flooring. With thick carpet, though, urine can soak in and leave a very minor but unmistakable pee odor even after your best efforts with a vinegar spray.
For extra deodorizing power, simply sprinkle some baking soda directly onto your affected area and let it sit for 15 to 30 minutes. For spots where your dog seems magnetically drawn to repeatedly pee on, you can even let it sit overnight. Either way, vacuum it up later, let dry, and give it a test sniff to see if that did the trick.
4. Dish Soap & Water Cleaning Spray
Vinegar and baking soda are in most homes, but in the rare cases you run out of both or want to avoid discoloring your floors, dish soap can work. Just mix a small cap of your dish soap with warm water and use a sponge to dab your dog’s accident area, scrubbing if necessary. Dish soap isn’t as effective as enzyme cleaners or even vinegar at preventing more accidents down the line, but it can do the job if you’re truly desperate.
We dog parents love our canine companions to pieces, but even occasional accidents can leave long-lasting musty odors. The key is to first remove as much of the urine as possible, preferably ASAP, followed by a vinegar-water scrub and baking soda if the first two steps don’t do the job well enough.