Odor and Stain Removal

The dos and don’ts of odor/stain removal

Odor and Stain Removal

Monday, October 12, 2015 | NHS Behavior Department

Accidents happen. Unfortunately, pets are drawn to eliminate in areas where they have done so before. If your pet has had an accident in the house, it’s important to clean the area appropriately to stop the pet from returning there.

Follow the steps below to clean soiled areas

  • If the item is machine washable like bedding, wash as usual. You may want to add baking soda to the laundry detergent. Let the item air dry. If you can still see or smell the urine, rewash using an enzymatic cleaner. Follow the directions on the cleaner.
  • If the accident occurred on carpet or upholstery, soak up as much of the urine as possible with paper towels. The more you soak up, the easier it will be to clean the area. 
  • Rinse the area with clear cool water. Remove as much of the water as possible by blotting or using a wet vac.
  • If you have previously used any cleaners on the area, the enzymatic cleaners will break down the old cleaners but not the urine. It’s important to rinse as much of the old cleaner out of the carpet as possible. A wet vac may work well to remove the old cleaners. Don’t use any chemicals with the wet vac. They work better with plain water.
  • Next, apply a high quality enzymatic pet odor cleaner. Follow the directions on the label.
  • If the urine has soaked to the padding, you will need to replace that part of the carpet and padding.
  • If wood has been discolored, you should remove and replace the varnish or paint.
  • Some washable wallpapers and enamel paints may respond well to the enzymatic cleaners but be sure to test a hidden area first for staining.
  • To find all soiled areas, use your eyes and nose. A black light can also be helpful in locating urine stains. Use a piece of chalk to draw around the fluoresced areas.

What NOT to do

  • Do NOT use ammonia, as this may encourage your pet to eliminate in that spot to cover the smell.  
  • Do NOT use a steam cleaner for carpet or upholstery. The heat will permanently set the stain and odor by binding the protein to the carpet fibers.

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