Do you have a pet?
Furry friends are a welcome addition to any household. They offer protection; they keep us company, and they’re always there for us. Many people love the idea of a pet for companionship; they’re just scared away by the work owning a pet may entail. They don’t want to have to clean up after a pet and even worse, they don’t want to have to contend with pet odors. When you’re in the same house every day it may not be something you notice, but the reality is, other people can tell you live with an animal just by walking through the front door. Why? Because that’s when the smell hits them.
A house that smells of a pet doesn’t necessarily indicate bad housekeeping on the home owner’s part. Even the tidiest homemaker can have a stinky pet. Because dogs and cats spend a lot of time laying and rolling around on the floor, their body odors permeate into the fibers. Add to that the smell of pet accidents and well things can get a bit gamey. If you’ve ever played host to house guests who wrinkle their noses upon entering your front door, perhaps what’s written here can help. Read on for tips for ridding your carpet of pet odors.
- Since most pet odors are due to accidents on the part of your pet, your first line of defense is to deal with the stains these accidents leave behind. If a pet has left a stain due to urination, vomiting or defecation, you’ll need to deal with it, immediately. Just picking up the solid waste and swiping at the stain isn’t enough.
- You have to give the soiled area a good cleaning. This can be done with vinegar, which also makes a wonderful deodorizer or mild dish soap. After the stain is completely gone, rinse by blotting with a damp rag or paper towel.
- Sometimes with pet urination, wicking can occur. This means the stain went deep down into the lower fibers of the carpet and has pooled at the bottom. You may feel you got the entire stain out, but in a few hours or even a day or two, the stain will magically reappear as the liquid rises up through the fibers to the top of the carpet. To eliminate wicking, take a thick towel or rag and place over the stain. Weigh it down with some books or other heavy items and leave it there for a few hours or even overnight. This should absorb all of the liquid. Clean the stain once again to make sure it’s all lifted.
- Avoid using a steamer to clean pet stains or a hairdryer to dry them. Heat causes stains and odors to set, making them virtually impossible to remove.
- Once a week or so, sprinkle a deodorizing powder on your carpet. This will help to keep your carpet smelling fresh. A more frugal option is to use baking soda. Baking soda doesn’t have an odor, so if scented deodorants aren’t for you, this is the alternative.
- Visit your local pet emporium for some good heavy duty pet smell removers. These are more expensive than those found in the supermarket, but this may be necessary if common household deodorants don’t work.
- Contact your vet for a recommendation. They have to contend with pet smells on a daily basis and will certainly have some advice or product recommendation.
- If you smell pet urine but can’t quite locate the stain, a black light may be in order. Be prepared for a rude awakening, however, as these lights will expose all your carpet’s impurities and may send you running for a professional.
- Don’t use ammonia or acid-based product to clean your carpet, a pet may mistake this scent for the smell of its own urine and continue to use your carpet as the bathroom.
- If none of the above methods work, contact a professional carpet cleaner. They’re experts and will have the stain removed and your carpet looking like new in no time.
Once the carpet is cleaned and freshened, it’s time to clear the air.
- An electric air purifier will remove pet odors still lingering in the air and keep your house smelling fresh.
- Letting a pot of vinegar simmer on your stove will also keep your house smelling fresh. The vinegar neutralizes, deodorizes and removes impurities from the air. The smell isn’t pleasant but it’s better than the alternative.
We love our pets. Unfortunately, they do have their stinky side. Most of us agree, however, that having a dog or a cat is worth the extra work it takes to keep our house smelling clean. If we train our pets properly and follow some guidelines for keeping the carpet smelling fresh, pet odors shouldn’t be an issue. Don’t put off adopting a pet because you’re afraid your house might smell. Once you experience the warmth and unconditional love that comes from owning a dog or cat, odor won’t even be an issue.