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Removing Pet Urine Stains and Odors

March 4, 2024

Removing Pet Urine Stains and Odors


As a pet owner, dealing with pet urine stains and odors is an inevitable part of life. Thankfully, there are many effective ways to tackle these pesky issues. In this article, I will provide an in-depth look at the various methods and products that can be used to fully remove pet urine stains and eliminate lingering odors.

Locating All Pet Urine Stains

The first step is identifying all affected areas in your home. Here are some tips for locating pet urine stains:

  • Use a blacklight flashlight – These special flashlights make dried urine stains glow, making them easy to identify. Be sure to check carpets, upholstery, and hard surfaces.

  • Smell problematic areas – Get on your hands and knees and sniff near baseboards, carpet edges, and furniture to detect urine odors. Pets tend to repeatedly pee in the same spots.

  • Look for visible stains – Check for dried urine stains on carpets, rugs, furniture, and hard surfaces. Stains may appear darker or discolored.

  • Feel for moisture – Use your fingers to feel for damp spots on carpets, cushions, or hard floors, which may indicate fresh urine.

Removing Stains From Carpets and Rugs

Carpets and rugs tend to absorb urine, resulting in stubborn stains and odors. Here are some effective carpet cleaning methods:

Blotting and Enzymatic Cleaners

  • Immediately blot wet stains with absorbent towels to soak up as much urine as possible. Avoid rubbing, which can spread the urine deeper into the fibers.

  • Next, use an enzymatic cleaner specifically designed for pet stains. These break down the compounds in urine that cause odors. Spray or pour directly on the stain.

  • Allow the cleaner to sit for 5-10 minutes to work. Blot up any excess liquid.

  • For set-in stains, reapply cleaner and let it soak for several hours or overnight. Blot thoroughly.


  • Mix 1 part white vinegar with 1 part water and spray onto the stain. Vinegar is acidic so it helps neutralize urine and bacteria.

  • Allow the solution to sit for 10-15 minutes then blot thoroughly with towels.

  • Repeat application and blotting until stain is removed.

Hydrogen Peroxide

  • Mix 3% hydrogen peroxide and dish soap in a 1:1 ratio. Apply directly to the stain and let sit for 5-10 minutes.

  • Use an old toothbrush to gently scrub the solution into the carpet fibers.

  • Blot thoroughly with absorbent white towels. Rinse the area with clean water and blot again.

  • Allow carpet to fully dry before assessing if the stain is gone. Repeat if needed.

Baking Soda

  • Cover the stain with a generous layer of baking soda. The alkaline powder will begin neutralizing the acid in urine.

  • Let the baking soda sit for 2-3 hours before vacuuming up. It may require repeat applications over several days.

  • You can also mix baking soda withhydrogen peroxide to make a paste. Apply to stain, let dry fully, then vacuum up.

Removing Stains From Upholstery and Furniture

Pet urine can also soak into upholstered furniture and mattresses. Try these techniques:

  • Blot wet stains immediately with paper towels. Use an enzymatic cleaner and let soak in for 10-15 minutes before blotting.

  • Mix equal parts water and white vinegar in a spray bottle. Lightly mist the stain and allow the solution to sit for 3-5 minutes before blotting.

  • Sprinkle baking soda liberally over the stain. Allow it to fully dry then vacuum up. Repeat if needed.

  • Use a soft brush to gently work a bit of dish soap lather into the stain. Rinse with clean water and blot dry.

  • If stains have reached the inner cushion or mattress, try using a wet/dry vacuum to suck up as much urine as possible.

Eliminating Odors From Hard Surfaces

Even after stains are removed, odors may linger. Here are some tips for hard surfaces:

Deep Cleaning

  • Mix an enzymatic cleaner with hot water and use a mop or cloth to wash hard floors. For tile, use a grout brush to fully reach into grout lines.

  • Rinse thoroughly with clean water and allow to fully dry. enzymatic cleaner residue can attract dirt if not rinsed properly.

Vinegar Mopping

  • Fill a bucket with 1 part white vinegar to 4 parts hot water. Mop hard surfaces with the solution.

  • Vinegar neutralizes odors and disinfects. For tough odors, let the solution sit for 10 minutes before rinsing.

Baking Soda

  • Sprinkling baking soda liberally on hard floors can help absorb odors. Allow to sit overnight when possible before vacuuming up.

  • You can also place bowls of baking soda around problem areas to deodorize. Replace every 2-3 days.

Preventing Future Pet Accidents

While removing current stains is important, prevention is key to avoid recurring issues:

  • Take your pet to the vet to check for underlying health issues leading to accidents.

  • Stick to a regular feeding and bathroom break schedule. Most pets need to relieve themselves shortly after eating or drinking.

  • Restrict access to previously soiled areas until they are fully cleaned and dried.

  • Try synthetic pheromone diffusers to help reduce pet stress that can cause marking.

  • Clean accidents immediately with an enzymatic cleaner to prevent residual odors that attract repeat urination.

When to Call a Professional

For severe pet urine damage or persistent odors, professional carpet, upholstery and floor cleaning may be needed:

  • Pet odor removal services use truck-mounted extraction systems and commercial-grade cleaners to thoroughly clean, deodorize, and disinfect.

  • They have access to subfloor treatments, microbial agents, and odor encapsulation sealants not available to consumers.

  • Technicians can assess if pet urine has soaked into subflooring or building materials, and recommend repairs or sealing.

  • A deep cleaning can reset the area to a neutral state, making future re-soiling less likely.


While the prospect of removing pet stains and odors can be daunting, there are many effective solutions. By identifying all problem areas, using the right enzymatic and natural cleaners, and taking preventative steps, you can successfully tackle set-in pet urine stains and odors in your home. For severe cases, don’t hesitate to call in a professional cleaning service. With some patience and diligence, you can restore problem areas and maintain a fresh, clean home environment for both you and your pets.

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