How to Remove Dog Pee and Other Stains From Carpet—Without Harsh Chemicals · The Wildest

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How to Remove Dog Pee and Other Stains From Carpet—Without Harsh Chemicals

The next time your dog pees on your favorite rug, be prepared with this simple, three-step method.

by Marcus Molina and Savannah Admire
Updated February 22, 2024
dog near pee spot on carpet
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No matter how well-trained your dog is, accidents happen: Maybe they release some “excitement pee” when a new friend comes over, or they’re sick and have a bout of diarrhea on the rug. Whatever the situation, every pet parent should have a strategy for cleaning up pet urine and poop stains. 

While a special floor or carpet cleaner can ensure those stains and odors disappear, some pet parents prefer not to use potentially harmful chemicals. This simple, three-step pet stain and urine odor remover uses natural, eco-friendly products that you probably already have in your pantry or cupboard. Best of all, it works just as well as store-bought, pet-stain removers — without any harsh chemicals. Learn how to get dog pee out of carpet with this simple, handy dog pee stain removal solution.

How to get dog-pee smell out of carpet

This homemade stain-and-odor remover also works well for mild stains like spaghetti sauce — it cleans and deodorizes without leaving any residue and doesn’t use any potentially unsafe chemicals. You can also store this premixed solution in a spray bottle to apply to pet pee stains and odor quickly.

Before using, test this pet-stain-removing technique on an out-of-the-way spot to be sure it won’t discolor your carpet. Here’s everything you need to know about how to get dog pee out of a white carpet or rug. When you notice a urine spot, make sure to treat the stain as soon as possible; otherwise, the stain and odor may be difficult to remove even with a dog-pee-odor remover. 

What you’ll need

  • Paper towels or cloth towels (paper towels seem to work best)

  • White vinegar

  • Water

  • Baking soda (and time for the baking soda to absorb any smell)

  • Vacuum

Step 1: Blot, don’t rub the stain

Figure out where the urine-soaked area is and clean it up swiftly. Use a paper towel to blot the pet stain dry. Rubbing the stain with a towel only serves to spread the stain or urine more, so unless you plan on rearranging your furniture to cover that stain, pat the stain with a paper towel. 

Replace the paper towel with a fresh one when it’s no longer soaking up the dog urine. Keep blotting the stain until the spot is fairly dry and little urine comes up on the towel.  

Step 2: Apply the vinegar cleaning solution

To get the pee smell out of carpet, mix together a dog-pee-smell remover solution of equal parts water and white vinegar in a small bowl. Soak the area with the water/vinegar solution and then let it sit for five minutes. Scrub hard to make sure you get deep into the fibers below the carpet’s surface to remove any lingering pet urine. 

For particularly bad pee smells or stains on your carpet, use a 100 percent vinegar solution. It’s important to let the solution soak into the carpet because it does two things: It helps to cut through the pet stain if it’s being especially stubborn and re-wets the stain so you can make sure that all the pet urine is lifted off the carpet. The vinegar neutralizes the ammonia in the dog urine, which helps to neutralize the smell and cleaning the urine from the carpet. 

Step 3: Sprinkle baking soda, then wait

While the spot is still wet, sprinkle baking soda on the affected area. Pour a little of the vinegar solution on top and mix. Right away, you’ll see and hear it fizzing and crackling as it starts to lift the pet stain and urine smell from the carpet. It helps to rub in the baking soda with your gloved hands or a brush to get it deep down into the carpet fibers. 

Leave the baking soda on the carpet until it’s completely dry. This might take a day or two, or it could just be overnight, depending on how much water/vinegar solution you used and what the temperature is like in your home. Once the baking soda is completely dry, vacuum your carpet thoroughly, and voila, your carpet is as good as new. 

The importance of thorough rinsing

When applying any sort of cleaner to carpet, make sure to rinse and remove any soapy residue. If you don’t, the smell will stick around — and may even get worse. Rinsing is a key step that many professionals use to remove pet stains from carpet, so it’s a good idea to follow their lead. 

How to get dried dog pee out of carpet

If you’ve found a spot of carpet with urine that has already dried out, there’s nothing to fear — especially once you know how to get the dog pee smell out of carpet. This vinegar solution also works remarkably well for dried dog urine which has set in, although you may have to use a little elbow grease. The older the stain, the harder it will be to remove, so be ready to put in the work!

Step 1: Scrape up solids first

Before applying the cleaning solution, scrape up any solids in the stain (which happens more often with vomit or poop than pee). 

Step 2: Rinse and blot

Remoisten and rinse the stained area with water. Then blot the spot, just as you would with a fresh stain, which can help to remove some of the urine. 

Step 3: Apply baking soda paste to lift residue

A mixture of baking soda and water can help remove odor and any residue from an old pee stain. Apply this mixture and let it sit for a little while before cleaning it up with a dry towel.

When removing dog-pee smells and stains from carpet:

Clean up pet urine quickly

When it comes to pet urine, it’s best to act quickly because, if the pee gets soaked into the padding underneath the carpet, the urine odors may be impossible to get out. At that point, you may need to replace the carpet or get a professional carpet cleaner that uses water extraction methods to get your carpet clean. 

Do not use steam cleaners

Avoid using a steam cleaner to clean pet stains and urine. The heat can actually bond the protein from the urine into the carpet fiber, making the stain and smell virtually permanent.

Avoid pet stain removers

Although it may be tempting, do not use ammonia-based cleaners or other cleaning chemicals with strong odors to clean pet urine on carpets. Ammonia-based cleaners do not effectively cover the pet odor and may actually encourage your dog to reinforce their urine scent mark

Leave baking soda to absorb

Baking soda is known for its smell-eliminating powers, but it can take time to work its magic. Tackle canine-created odors in your carpet by sprinkling baking soda on the surface, waiting 15 minutes (up to 24 hours for strong smells), then vacuuming. You can do the same with your dog’s bedding. 

Hydrogen peroxide is your friend

If the vinegar solution doesn’t remove the pet stain, try upping the power with a bit of hydrogen peroxide. Use a ratio of 1:1 cup vinegar and water along with 1/4 cup of 3% hydrogen peroxide. This solution is safe for pets and carpets (but be sure to test this solution on the corner of the rug to ensure it doesn’t cause discoloration). 

Use enzyme-based pet urine remover

Another great choice as an alternative to the vinegar solution is an enzymatic cleaner. These specially formulated cleaners use natural ingredients to remove stubborn urine odors. The enzymes actually digest the stain- and odor-causing proteins in the pet urine, neutralizing the smell. 

Homemade cleaning sprays

You can take advantage of a number of household products to help clean up pet pee stains, including vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, and baking soda. Once you know how to get dried dog pee out of carpet DIY methods, you can then use this strategy on other stains. 

Baking soda can help neutralize odor. Just sprinkle a little bit over the affected area, let it sit for around five minutes, and then vacuum it up. Next, a mixture of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle can work to remove stains. Just liberally spray the urine spot until it’s saturated. If you’re extra worried about stains, you can use warm water and dish soap as a final step to clean the carpet, after the baking soda and vinegar solution.

When to call in the professionals

If you’re unable to remove your dog’s pee stains or odors, it may be time to invest in professional carpet cleaning surfaces. Urine can easily cause damage to carpet and other surfaces, so it’s important to clean these messes up thoroughly. 

If your dog continues to pee on the carpet, there may be an underlying health issue, like a urinary tract infection (UTI). Visit your vet and talk to them about the problem and whether urinalysis and other tests may be necessary. 

FAQs (People also ask):

How do I get the smell of dog pee out of the carpet?

Baking soda is a safe and natural way to eliminate odor in carpet. Apply baking soda to the affected area and let it sit for at least 15 minutes before vacuuming the area clean. 

How do I get dog pee out of a white carpet?

Start by soaking up the urine with a paper towel or cloth. Then apply a mixture of distilled white vinegar and water to the area. Let the mixture sit before cleaning up the solution with a dry towel. 

What is the fastest way to get dog urine out of carpet?

When you find a spot where your dog has peed on the carpet, make sure to clean it up right away. Soak up the liquid with a paper towel and then apply the natural cleaning mixture. 

Are there natural products I can buy to remove pet stains from carpet? 

Many household products are useful at removing pet stains and odors from carpet, including baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, dish soap, and white vinegar. All can help you eliminate urine spots and odor. 


marcus molina

Marcus Molina

Marcus Molina is the President of Scrubbi, your premier eco-friendly house cleaning service servicing homes across the US and Canada.

Savannah Admire

Savannah Admire is a writer, editor, and pet parent to two dogs and a cat. When she’s not writing, you can find her reading, playing Animal Crossing, or being an obnoxious nerd about her favorite movies and TV shows. She lives in Maryland, where she constantly debates whether or not to get a third dog.

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