Every pet owner dreads having to clean up after their pet’s messes. It’s one thing if your pet has an accident every so often. It’s totally another when you find yourself terrified of leaving your dog or cat alone in a room with your brand new couch or carpet. Fortunately, you don’t need to live in fear anymore. From stain prevention to stain removal, there are tons of ways to make sure your pet doesn’t end up ruining your furniture after a few untimely accidents. Even if your housebreaking isn’t going too well, you can quickly get on top of pesky pet stains in a snap by cleaning upholstery the smart way. For some helpful tips on pet stain removal from carpets and furniture, read on.
Treat Stains Gently and Quickly
The first step to effective stain removal is beating the clock. If you find yourself with a pet stain on your hands, waste no time in treating it. All pet owners should have a stain removal kit handy in the (extremely likely) event of an accident. This goes double for new puppy owners. Whether your pet is housebroken or in the process of being pad trained, they’re going to want to keep gravitating to the spots they’ve already marked. That’s why it’s so important to not only treat each stain for bacteria, but for odor as well. If you’re looking at a rug stain, use a gentle stain remover or dish soap and blot it with quick, light motions. Because dog and cat urine tends to be acidic, you’ll want to work fast before the acid starts to create visible damage. If you’re looking at an upholstery stain, use a gentle, preferably green pet stain spray and, being careful not to over-saturate, dab up the excess with a white cloth or paper towel.
Use the Right Remover
When it comes to pet stains, some pet removal products do a much better job than others. Because of the acidic content in pet urine and feces, the right removers will use natural ingredients to break down the acid and kill any bacteria before the stain sinks down into your carpet or couch’s fibers. While it’s not strictly necessary to use a targeted pet stain remover rather than an all-purpose one, choosing the right cleaner will help to prevent your pet from returning to the same spot again and again. The best types of pet stain removers use enzymes to break down the harmful content in your pet’s waste naturally. Once you put down an enzymatic stain remover, don’t mix it with anything else to avoid the risk of neutralizing the enzymes and preventing them from doing a thorough job. Your stain remover should ideally be the last step in your routine, after cleaning your stain with water and soap.
Don’t Over-Treat Your Stain
As with any stain, you want to avoid soaking the area, applying too much pressure, or using hot water instead of cold. Treating a stain too aggressively could cause it to sink further into your rug or sofa, making the odor even harder to get out. Don’t use any harsh chemicals like bleach, ammonia, or white vinegar. Because of the nature of pet stains, only enzyme-based cleaners are formulated to break down pet smells effectively, rather than just masking them. This has the potential to backfire in a big way since your pet will still smell their scent and will be tempted to re-mark their territory after you’ve cleaned.
Neutralize Odor to Prevent Repeats
A pet’s odor is their calling card. In the first few weeks of training, your pet will be tempted to spray all over the place simply to mark their territory. One of the most difficult parts of potty training is trying to get your pet to understand that it’s not acceptable to do their business indoors. Because of this, you’ll need to work to eradicate pet stains and odor to stop yourself from having to go in circles cleaning up after your pet. The best pet cleaners work to break down odor and bacteria so that your pet won’t recognize their own scent and will be redirected to a different area. However, if you’re still running into trouble, try using your pet’s scent to encourage them to go elsewhere. Putting used pads or newspaper outdoors can be a helpful way of preventing your pet from returning to the same spot on the rug every time, creating long-lasting damage. Even if you’ve thoroughly cleaned and treated a pet stain, it’s possible that the acidic content can keep doing damage afterward. If you’re running into this issue, take your rug in for a professional cleaning as soon as you can.