Love your pet but can’t live without the luxury of soft floor coverings underfoot? Read on to learn how to remove pet stains from the carpet.
Natural and Inexpensive Cleaners Found in your Own Pantry
Keeping your carpets hygienically clean is a challenge with four-legged friends on the loose. When an accident occurs, it can be tempting to blitz it with the strongest chemical you can find. But it’s important to choose products that thoroughly remove stains and that are safe for your pet, too. Removing pet stains completely means treating the area immediately. Save valuable time (and money) by utilising two humble pantry staples.
#1 Vinegar, the Wonder Cleaner
Vinegar works on pet urine by disinfecting the area and breaking down the uric acid – the main culprit for that unmistakable smell. The odour must be completely eliminated or your beloved pet may return to the scene of the crime and commit the crime again! Vinegar leaves no residue so will dry clear and with no vinegary smell.
Of course, there are many varieties of vinegar but for the purpose of pet stain removal, distilled white vinegar is the way to go. Save the balsamic for your salads!
#2 Baking Soda aka Bicarb Soda
Baking soda is a non-toxic white, crystalline powder. Its alkaline properties help to neutralise any remaining odour. When sprinkled over your carpet, it works to absorb any lingering moisture and smells.
A Step-by-Step Guide
Follow this method to remove pet stains. Vinegar is safe to use on carpet but spot-testing for colour-fastness is advisable – just do it somewhere inconspicuous.
What you’ll Need
- distilled white vinegar
- baking soda (bicarb soda)
- paper towels or old bath towels
- spray bottle or white rag/cloth
- rubber gloves (optional but trust us, you’re going to want to use them)
First, remove any solid matter. Use paper towels or a scoop and take care not to spread the stain further or rub it deeper into the carpet. This job is not fun but it’s very important. Use gloves.
Next you’ll want to lift as much moisture out of the carpet fibres as possible. Paper towels work best to absorb liquid. DON’T scrub. Using a blotting action prevents driving the stain deeper into the pile and it won’t damage the delicate fibres of your carpet. For maximum absorption, lay down the paper towel and tread on it lightly. Repeat this action with a fresh paper towel until the towel comes up dry after blotting. This may take a while but it’s important so keep at it. If you don’t have paper towels on hand, old bath towels can also be used.
Make up a mixture of vinegar and water – a half and half solution is recommended – and begin applying it to the stained area. Using either a spray bottle or a white towel soaked in the solution (you don’t want to inadvertently transfer colour dye to your carpet), wet the area. It’s not necessary to flood the carpet but make sure you cover it well. Blot dry again with more paper towels or fresh bath towels.
Now sprinkle baking soda liberally over the affected area. At this point, you can gently massage the powder into the carpet for a few minutes and then leave it to dry completely. This may take a day or more.
Once completely dry, vacuum up the baking soda. At this point, the stain should be completely gone but sometimes vomit and poo can prove especially difficult to remove. In this case, you can repeat the previous steps again or you can follow an additional step.
Extra Step for Stubborn Pet Stains
What you’ll Need
- baking soda
- 1 teaspoon mild dish washing detergent
- ¼ cup 3% hydrogen peroxide (IMPORTANT – anything stronger than 3% could bleach your carpet)
- spray bottle
- rubber gloves
Sprinkle the baking soda liberally over the affected area. Mix ¼ cup of hydrogen peroxide with a tsp of dish washing liquid in the bottle and spray over the baking soda. Use your fingers (gloved, of course!) to gently massage the carpet fibres. Now leave to completely dry once again. Vacuum up the residue once done.