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Removing Pet Stains and Odors
Before we give you tips for cleaning, let's start out with a couple of "DO NOT" points; since many folks never ready to the end, and then find out they missed an important "DO NOT" that was essential. ;O)
DO NOT use ammonia or vinegar based solutions to clean, not even on linoleum. These merely mask the odor with another layer of scent that invites your dog to re-mark the area with their own scent.
DO NOT use a steam cleaner to clean your carpet or furniture as the heat will bond the protein and stain to the fibers.
DO NOT use any cleaner on your carpet or furniture until you "safe test" a small area to ensure it will not damage the fabric.
If your item is machine washable: use the cold water setting and a baking soda detergent to wash. You can add baking soda to any detergent to help remove odors. Then line-dry. Remember HEAT will set the stain.
If you can still see or smell the stain, re-wash using an enzymatic cleaning solution. Follow the instructions for using an enzymatic cleaning on machine washables.
If you are cleaning carpet or furniture:
- Soak up as much urine as possible with a paper towel. The more you can soak up, the easier it will be to clean the area thoroughly.
- Pick up any feces.
- Place urine soaked towels and feces in designated area in the yard (reinforcing the house-breaking tips).
- Rinse the area with cool water. Remove as much water as possible by blotting or using a wet-vac.
- If you have previously used other cleaners on the carpet or area, be sure to rinse thoroughly as the enzymatic cleaners will break down the cleaners and not the urine.
- Remove as much of the water you use to remove the cleaner as possible using water and a wet vac. Do not use cleaners with the wet vac as the density of cleaners is not as easily removed. Wet vacs work best, using cool or cold water.
- After thoroughly cleaning area with water/wet vac, apply your enzymatic cleaner, following the instructions on the container.
- If the urine has soaked into the padding, you may have to replace that section of carpet and padding.
- Use your hand-held rotary brush to clean furniture. Again, follow the instructions on the label of your enzymatic cleaner.
To clean floors and walls:
- Test an area to be sure your enzymatic cleaner (spray) will not discolor things. Follow the instructions on the label. But, in a nutshell, spray, let sit for 30 secs and wipe with a dry towel.
- Some washable wall paper and enamel paints respond well to enzymatic cleaners. However, if the varnish, paint or wood is discolored, you will need to replace it.
To deep clean an entire room; First use a black light to locate the stains quickly. The fastest way to see them is to do this with minimal lighting. Second, don't panic when you see that the entire room glows with urine spots under the black light. Then, using a piece of chalk, outline the stained area(s). Pre treat with enzymatic cleaner, as instructed above, on each spot. Once you've done this, you can redo the entire room, using water to thoroughly rinse-clean the room.
If you are selling your house, you will want to replace badly stained carpet, even if it looks good. You never know when a well-informed pet owner will bring their own black-light to pre-inspect your carpet. ;O)