Pets can be an important part of living well. Dogs provide a source of near-constant energy to keep you on the go, while cats are companions who give both independence and love. Having a pet in the house can bring joy to you, your friends, and your family, but there’s no doubt that our furry friends bring some funky scents along with them.
Figuring out how to get rid of pet odor often involves chemical sprays with dizzying ingredient lists. Every spray seems to promise it all – any odor, any stain, any fabric, any pet! But after ordering product after product, chemical after chemical, we were in search of some natural ways to eliminate pet odors. The best part is, you probably have everything you need around the home already!
Don’t Wait for Scents to Set In
Before we get into making gallons of cleaner and odor remover, it’s important to remember just how far an ounce of prevention will go. The best way to beat pet odors is by staying ahead of the scent – cleaning and freshening carpets, furniture, pet beds, and mattresses routinely. Of course, some odors are unavoidable, like when your new puppy shows how much he loves you by relieving himself all over the carpet.
But you want to avoid allowing your pet’s scent to get stuck in the various fabrics around your home. For this, we recommend a simple mixture of warm water, baking soda, and essential oil:
– 1 tablespoon baking soda
– 2 cups of water
– Essential oil as desired – at least 3-5 drops
Mix it all in a spray bottle and you’ll have a natural air and fabric freshener on hand at all times!
Spray fabrics lightly once or twice a week and give your home a clean, fresh fragrance. You can even spray different rooms with different oils: Lavender for the living room, lemongrass in the kitchen, and rosehip in the bedroom!
For Lighter Stains, Add Vinegar
The great thing about using this natural pet odor eliminator is that it can be easily turned into a natural pet stain remover by simply adding vinegar (and some more baking soda)! It is essential that this formula only be used for fresh stains that have been thoroughly cleaned and patted down with a towel. Otherwise, you may leave behind odors that your pet can detect, making the more likely to use the same spot as a toilet again!
The vinegar and baking soda will react to make quite a fizz, so watch out for it bubbling over if you’re mixing it in a two-liter or other thin bottle. For this solution, you’ll want:
– 2 cups warm water
– 2 cups vinegar
– 2-4 tablespoons of baking soda,
– Essential oil as desired (at least 5-10 drops)
These ingredients can be premixed and sprayed, or you can mix them right on the carpet. To do this, sprinkle the baking soda on the stain spot first, then add your warm water/vinegar mix. After the solution fizzes up, let it sit for at least 10 minutes or more, depending on the severity of the stain. Then scrub, dry, and put down a few drops of essential oil to leave a great scent!
For a slightly less powerful cleaning solution, substitute the baking soda for salt – 4 tablespoons per cup of water/vinegar mix.
When the Going Gets Tough, Go Enzymatic™
You’ll notice that many pet and fabric cleaners tout some proprietary formula of “bio-enzymatic” magic sauce. What they’re really talking about is harnessing the nature’s power for our cleaning purposes.
Enzymes are molecules that greatly increase the speed of chemical reactions. Chemical cleaners work by using harsh chemicals to destroy molecules of dirty stuff. Enzyme cleaners clean by using natural biological enzymes to break molecules down into smaller, not dirty stuff (like carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen). These cleaners should be used on tough, non-urine stains, or on urine stains that have dried in the fabric.
Fortunately, enzyme cleaners are cheap and extremely easy to make. Unfortunately, they take two weeks to three months to ferment. You can read our enzyme cleaner recipe here. If you need something in a pinch, there are plenty of options to be found online.
As always, be happy, be healthy, and leave a comment below if you love this post or think we left something out!