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Top 6 Home Remedies to Get Rid of Dog Urine Smells

jack russell dog lying near wet spot

A house that smells like dog pee can be frustrating and embarrassing. Being self-conscious about the state of your home’s odor can prevent you from having people come to visit and may be a constant source of irritation and anxiety. The good news is, dog urine is fairly easy to eliminate as a source of stinky smells. Locating the source and treating it will almost always result in the elimination of the odor.

Here are six home remedies to help get rid of dog urine smells in your house.

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The 6 Top Home Remedies to Get Rid of Dor Urine Smells

1. Immediately Clean Up Any And All Dog Urine

cleaning the floor
Image Credit: Andrew Angelov, Shutterstock

The easiest method for reducing the smell of dog urine in your home is to immediately clean up all the dog urine as you find it. While this may seem like a no-brainer, it can be easy to miss little spots. Accidents that occur out of view or on things like carpet can slip through the cracks and add up over time.

If you see your dog pee in the house, clean it up right away. Be sure to soak up all of the pee with a towel or rag and then proceed to clean the area to ensure that the source of the odor is addressed as quickly as possible. Once urine soaks in or dries, it can be almost impossible to find later, making odor-busting that much more difficult. Even dogs that do not have accidents often can sometimes sneak off to pee in hard-to-find places if you are not paying attention.

  • Most effective method
  • Quick
  • Hard to spot after the fact
  • Requires constant diligence

2. Use Baking Soda

Baking soda
Image credit: evita-ochel, Pixabay

Baking soda is one of the most effective odor busters on the market. After you are done cleaning a spot of dog pee, treating it with baking soda will help eliminate many of the smells associated with the accident. You can sprinkle baking soda on any offending urine spots and let it soak in before cleaning or vacuuming it up. Baking soda is a great choice because it is readily available and extremely affordable.

If you have an area that has a residual smell to it, you can put out the baking soda in cups and over time it should help to absorb many of the bad smells. In order for this to be effective in the long run, you have to ensure that the sources of the smells are taken care of. Simply putting baking soda out will not clean up urine spots. These two things should be done together for the best results.

  • Cheap
  • Proven results
  • Needs to be used in conjunction with other methods

3. Clean With Soap And Vinegar

vinegar and cleaning supplies on the table
Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock

Simply soaking up dog pee and putting out baking soda might not be enough to effectively eliminate all sources of urine smells in the house. Those methods work best when also paired with a good cleaning with soap and vinegar. Soap will break up the dried urine while the vinegar neutralizes the compounds that cause dog pee to smell rotten. Cleaning dog pee spots or smelly dog areas with soap and vinegar is a great way to ensure that the source of the odor is completely taken care of.

Clean with soap and water first, then mix some vinegar with some warm water and scrub again. Let the area dry. The results will be the purest that you can get while using basic home items.

  • Gets to the heart of the issue
  • No purchases are required in most cases
  • Multiple scrubbings required
  • Needs time to dry

4. Clean Your Furniture

cleaning sofa with spray
Image Credit: Lion Day, Shutterstock

Another source of canine urine smell could be your furniture. If your dog spends a lot of time on the couch, it could be contributing to the pee smells in your living room. Dogs can get pee on themselves even if they aren’t having accidents in the house, and they could be transferring that smell to your furniture. If you have more than one dog, sometimes dogs like to pee on each other even if you do not see them do it.

Cleaning your furniture can reduce the source of bad odors. You can get a special furniture cleaning device that is similar to a carpet cleaner. You could also periodically use an upholstery cleaner from a spray bottle to clean the furniture with a rag. Depending on how much furniture you own and how big it is, the cleaning process can be labor-intensive. Regularly cleaning your furniture yields the best results.

  • Helpful for common areas
  • Costs money
  • Labor intensive

5. Do Doggy Laundry

small white dog in dog bed on floor
Image Credit: Gladskikh Tatiana, Shutterstock

Does your dog have a favorite place to curl up? If so, that area could be the source of dog urine smells in your home. Many dogs have a favorite blanket or dog bed that they spend a lot of time in, and those areas can get smelly if not cleaned regularly. Doing your dog’s laundry can quickly cut down on bad smells, including urine smells.

Sometimes dogs will pee small amounts on areas that they consider to be theirs as a way of marking their territory. In other cases, old dogs can sometimes pee themselves in their sleep without you even knowing. Gathering up your dog’s bedding material and washing it at least once a week will help to reduce those pesky pee smells.

Unfortunately, some of these behaviors are ingrained, and after you wash their blankets, they might pee on them again. Keeping up with doggy laundry needs to be a regular thing in order for it to be effective in the long run. Doing the dog laundry will also help to keep your dog cleaner as well.

  • Eliminates another source of potential odors
  • Easy to do
  • Needs to be done regularly
  • Adds to detergent and water costs

6. Bathe Your Dog Regularly

golden retriever dog taking a bath
Image Credit: 135pixels, Shutterstock

Giving your dog regular baths can help to rid your house of dog urine. If you have done all the other steps on this list but still find yourself catching a whiff of dog pee from time to time, the source of the offending odor could be your dog itself. More often than they realize, dogs pee on themselves, either on purpose or by accident, and can be carrying the smell on them even if they do not piddle in the house.

Bathing your dog once a week can help reduce the last pockets of the annoying scent. You can use regular soap, or you can buy special dog shampoo designed to break down the kinds of dirt that dogs accumulate over time. The problem is not all dogs are compliant about baths. If your dog doesn’t sit still in your bathtub, you can always try and give them a bath outside using a regular garden hose and some soap.

  • Makes your dog smell good
  • Can eliminate hidden urine odors
  • Dogs can be frustrating to bathe

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Why Does Dog Urine Smell So Badly?

The source of the recognizable urine odor is high levels of nitrogen. Dog pee has a ton of nitrogen in it which offends the nose. When dog pee sits over time, it transforms into alkaline crystals and salts, which emit offensive odors over time. Breaking up these salts is key to breaking up the urine smell. Dog pee also has chemicals and proteins in it that are designed to smell to warn off other dogs but it is also recognizable and stinky to the human nose as well.

puppy near puddle on floor
Image credit: New Africa, Shutterstock

How To Prevent Dog Urine Smells In The House

The number one way to prevent dog urine smells in the house is to prevent your dog from peeing in the house. Young dogs are not always properly trained and will have accidents inside. Similarly, old dogs have a hard time holding their bladder compared to regular adult dogs. Every dog can be house trained; it is just a matter of time, effort, and willpower. Effective training and doggy diligence is key to keeping those bad smells out of your house.

If a dog does have an accident inside, prompt cleaning is necessary to reduce the effects of the accident. Letting the pee sit and soak in will make finding and cleaning the source much more difficult.


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Why Is My Dog Suddenly Peeing In The House?

Dogs that suddenly start peeing inside when they don’t have a history of accidents can be suffering from a medical problem. The most common issue is a urinary tract infection which can cause dogs to pee more frequently. Dogs that are on steroids or suffer from Cushing’s Disease will also pee more frequently. If your dog starts peeing inside out of the blue it is a good idea to talk to your vet to make sure that there is not something going on medically with the dog.

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Stinky dog pee stains can be an annoying problem to have in a home, but it is a treatable problem. Unlike other stains and odors, dog pee is easy to eliminate. It just takes a little bit of work and a little diligence. These six remedies can effectively eliminate nearly every source and cause of dog urine smell inside the home.

You might also be interested in: How to Remove Black Urine Stains from Hardwood Floors: 10 Practical Options

Featured Image Credit: Reshetnikov_art, Shutterstock


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