Household Products for Removing Pet Odors

There are products you can buy especially made to remove pet odors, but you can also use household products, often as effectively. This is a guide about household products for removing pet odors.


April 4, 2007 Flag
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When my three grandchildren came to live with me, they each had a kitten. The kittens grew up and started reproducing, all about the same time. Needless to say, one litter box per cat was not enough and there were numerous spots that the cats/kittens chose to potty. The smells were very strong and I tried numerous products to eliminate them and nothing seemed to work until, my son accidentally spilled a bottle of vodka on one of the 'potty" spots. The odor was gone.

I purchased a large bottle of vodka and put it in a spray bottle. When I came upon a potty spot, I immediately cleaned it with a mild detergent, rinsed, and then sprayed it with the vodka and the odor was gone. The vodka kills the bacteria that causes the odor. I don't know the difference between vodka and straight alcohol, but straight alcohol does not work. All the cats/kittens are gone now, but I still keep the spray bottle handy for other hard to remove odors.

By Patti from Clever, MO

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April 4, 20070 found this helpful

Now, that's what I call using a bad thing for a good use! I may have to try that myself as I have 2 dogs and a cat, assuming that Vodka isn't too expensive.

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April 4, 20070 found this helpful


You sure live in the right town!

Was it named after you?

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April 4, 20070 found this helpful

I was advised by a Vet to use a laundry powder we have here in Australia, called Bio-Zet. It removes cat urine smells from clothing & bedding, and is also good for carpets & vinyls etc. It is an excellent deodoriser for all laundry, especially smelly socks. It is not the cheapest detergent, but I find it the best, so I stick with it.

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April 5, 20070 found this helpful

did you know that each cat is supposed to have his own litter box on each level of the house. ie 3 cats 3 boxes down stairs and 3 upstairs. fyi

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April 5, 20070 found this helpful

July 12, 2007 Flag
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When animals soil the carpet, all you have to do from keeping them from soiling it again is use vinegar mixed with a bit of apple cider. Together, it eliminates the smell.

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March 4, 2010 Flag
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I have a rather odd question and I'm hoping someone out there can tell me yes or no, and if no, then why not. They say that using enzymes is the best way to get pet odors out of carpets. But the enzyme containing stuff they sell at the store is awfully expensive.


So here's what I'm thinking. What about using septic tank cleaner (generic Rid-X) instead? I pay $2.75 for the stuff I've been using for many years and it is all enzymes.

Would it be possible to use this on the carpet? Maybe sprinkle it on, then spritz it damp and vacuum it up when it's dry? If not, then why not? I know, sounds odd, but it would be a lot cheaper than the stuff they sell.

By Cricket from Parkton, NC

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March 4, 20100 found this helpful

Oh, I would not try the Rid-X; I suspect you would stain your carpet...and those enzymes are not necessarily the same ones that take care of odors; and they're in a base that makes it easy to flush them and has nothing to do with cleaning.

First of all, you need to determine the source of the odor. If the odor has gone through the carpet and pad and soaked into the wood below, you may not have much luck without renovation. (Pulling the carpet back and sealing the wood underneath.)

If it is pet urine that didn't soak through, you will need to neutralize that, in which case your best bet probably is the commercial stuff. If you can rent or borrow a steam cleaner, you can buy concentrated cleaners that you dilute, and they do a pretty good job and are not that expensive.

If it is just old, stale pet odor, I would suggest first sprinkling baking soda all over the carpet, leaving it for a day or longer, then vacuum well. You can also try borrowing a steam cleaner and using one of the concentrates with Febreeze.

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March 5, 20100 found this helpful

I love experiments like that. Why not dissolve a bit in a quart of water and test in small area, marking off area with tape and wait several days for it to work.

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March 7, 20100 found this helpful

Most powdered septic products like Rid X are mainly filler with very little enzyme and don't dissolve easily. RidX liquid is too dark blue.

We use liquid Ultrezyme or liquid Odorzyme that we get from the people It's not very expensive but it does the trick. You can spray it or pour it on, but we usually pour so there is enough to soak into the floor, etc. under the carpet because pee really penetrates and if you only remove the surface pee, the smell will come back.

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March 10, 20100 found this helpful

Try white vinegar it is said this should break down the crystals which are left behind after cleaning and leave the smell behind. The enzymes actually eat the crystals. You are supposed to saturate the area this is suggested to do with a fresh stain. I googled " enzymes cat urine". We had our carpets professionally cleaned we had one spot where our outside cat had gotten in and marked the wall.

The inside cat who had never urinated in the house all the years we had it continued to wet there all the time no matter how much we cleaned. We opted to pay $200 extra dollars to have the spot "professionally treated" they carried in a five gallon bucket 1/2 full with warm water and their "product" dumped it in the carpet and stepped on it repeatedly to get the fluid into the pad and back up, then sucked it out with their powerful vacuum.

This helped but far from perfect, the cat died a while latter and we had the carpet and some drywall replaced. But I didn't know about the vinegar I would have tried that in the beginning. I sounds like you leave it on and let it dry after blotting up all urine. For stains ammonia and rubbing alcohol are also mentioned as choices. Good luck!

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