Let’s take a minute to talk about dog smells.
Yes, your dog smells. You might love him or her with all of your heart, but you have to admit that your dog probably doesn’t do an awful lot to make your house smell better. In fact, your dog might be the smelliest part of your house, and doing anything to get rid of that smell might feel a little impossible. Fortunately, though, there are steps that you can take to make your house smell a little less like a dog’s den.
Each of the methods discussed here is a favorite of certain dog owners. While not all of them will work for you, there’s a good chance that at least one will help. If you’re in desperate need of a break from dog smells, you might find just what you need here.
How to Get Rid of Dog Smells
Clean the Hard Floors!
It turns out that an awful lot of the smell generated by a dog comes from all the little bits and pieces of himself or herself that are left around your home. That’s right – it’s not just your dog’s natural odor about which you need to worry, but about all of the hair, nails, and dander that he or she generates.
The good news is that you can make some big changes just by sweeping and mopping. Make sure that your sweeping is a little more gentle than normal, as kicking up all that debris just spreads it around. Sweep a little, clean it up with a dustpan, and then repeat.
As soon as you’re done sweeping, you can start mopping. Even something as simple as a quick Swiffer is going to help you out here, but taking the time to mop might have a better chance of getting rid of anything else that your dog has managed to leave on your floors.
Remember to Vacuum
Yes, your dog probably hates the vacuum. This does not, however, mean that you need to stop using the device. Once you’re done with the hard surfaces, it’s time to move on to the carpeted surfaces.
Simply put, your carpets probably stink. They’re full of hair and other particles, so you need to clean them out as often as possible. Sorry, dog owners – you may actually want to vacuum once every two or three days, just to be on the safe side here. Don’t forget to give your dog a treat if he or she hates the noise!
Your carpets aren’t the only things to vacuum, though. You should definitely break out the hose to make sure that you get all of your furniture and take the time to get your drapes as well. The more soft surfaces you can get with your vacuum cleaner, the better your house will end up smelling.
As a note, you should definitely completely clean out your canister every time you vacuum. This will ensure that you get rid of the smelly particles and that you don’t accidentally let them fly back into your home. If your vacuum has a filter, you should also make sure to clean that out on a regular basis.
Clean Your Carpets
This is probably one of the most obvious steps but that doesn’t make it any less important. Once you’ve got everything vacuumed, it’s time to go ahead and break out the carpet cleaner.
You don’t have to do this part yourself, of course. You can and should think about contacting a professional service to help you out, though you should always make sure that such an agency actually uses pet-friendly products when they work on your home. If you don’t want to spend the money, though, it’s easy enough to rent a steam cleaner and do the job yourself.
As you might expect, this isn’t a job you can do with your dog in the house. You’ll want to keep him or she somewhere isolated like a backyard equipped with an invisible dog fence or garage during this process and you shouldn’t let your dog back in until is dry. Once your dog is back inside, try to make sure that he or she doesn’t use this time to re-mark some of his or her favorite spots.
Now that your carpets are clean, you can start washing everything that your carpet cleaner couldn’t hit. Your clothes count here, but you should especially focus on things like blankets and pillowcases. Anything on which your dog sits or lays really needs to be clean.
Yes, this includes everything on your bed. It doesn’t matter if your dog sleeps with you or not – if it can go in a washing machine, it needs to be washed. Even your clothes might need a few extra cycles, as it is incredibly common for your clothes to smell more like your dog more than you might realize.
Fortunately, this step has the extra bonus of helping you smell better when you leave your home. This is one tip that everyone will appreciate.
Wash The Pet Bed
Whether your pet’s dog bed is in the living room or in his or her dog crate, it needs to get washed out. This is almost certainly one of the worst-smelling items in your home, so make sure that it gets washed very well.
The good news is that many dog beds are able to be thrown in the washing machine. Most have removable covers that can be washed, so throw that in as soon as you can.
One thing for which you need to be on the lookout is the state of the core bed. If it’s not stained or odor-resistant, you may need to throw it out. Luckily, many modern beds are made out of material that can be washed.
It’s not a bad idea to use a stain repellant on your dog’s bed, either. This will help to keep the bad smells from coming back as quickly and it will help you to feel a little more confident in how clean your dog’s bed will stay.
Open the Windows
Yes, opening the windows can actually work wonders for the dog smell in your home. It’s not going to get rid of every smell, of course, but you’d be amazed at the difference that opening just a few windows can make when the dog smell in your home gets too strong.
If the smells in your home are especially strong, you can try to fully air out your house. This means not only opening all of the windows, but also opening your doors, turning on your fans, and even turning on the fan in your AC unit. You will obviously want to make sure that your dog is in his or her crate or on a leash during this process, as you don’t want to lose your dog while you’re airing out your home – you just want to lose the dog smell.
Change Out the Air Filters
The air filters in your home are fairly good at catching particulate matter. Unfortunately, this means that they’re also very good at catching the things that can make your home smell like your dog.
The good news is that it’s fairly easy to change out your air filters. This is something that you should do at least once every few months, though those who have dogs who shed frequently are usually counseled to change out their filters every month. Doing so will not only help to eliminate some of the dog smell in your home, but it can also help with issues like allergies and asthma.
Don’t be too rough with your filters when you remove them. If you shake them around, you’ll put all of that dander back into the air – leaving you with the same problem that you were trying to solve.
Use an Air Purifier
Air purifiers for pets are a great choice for those who are trying to get the particulate matter out of the air. This isn’t just a good way to fight off allergies, though; using an air purifier will help you to reduce the dog smell in at least certain rooms significantly. There are many different types of air purifiers that work well in different spaces, so make sure to use the type that works best in your home.
The only downside is that these purifiers will only work in a limited space. If you’re incredibly worried about dog smells in particular rooms, you’ll definitely want to pick up multiple purifiers. This can be pricey, though, so make sure that you use them in the spaces that need the most help.
Search for Problem Spots
If you’ve followed all of the steps above, your home probably smells better than before. It may, however, still have some strong dog smells in certain spots. This is the point at which you’ll want to play odor detective.
Start looking around for spots that might be generating strong smells. Is there a place where your dog frequently urinates? Did your dog throw up somewhere? Is there a place where your dog might have hidden something? If so, you need to figure out how to address these problems and what you’re going to do to stop them from coming back.
In some cases, you’ll be able to use pet stain and odor removers to get rid of the smell. In others, though, you might actually have to think about removing the carpet or even doing some demo work. Let your nose do the investigating to figure out where to start.
Do A Deep Investigation
After you’ve looked through the problem spots, your home should smell better. In some cases, though, you’re not going to be able to find everything even with a thorough sniff. In fact, you might actually have to turn to some pretty high-tech solutions to figure out exactly why there are still bad smells in your home. It’s not a bad idea, for example, to invest in blacklight for this kind of process.
Using a black light is easy. Turn off all of your lights, then turn on the device. If something glows, you’ve found a stain. It’s not necessarily what’s causing the problem, but anything that shows up on your search is probably something that needs to be cleaned.
As a note, you need to look at more than just your carpet with the black light. Look at your furniture, your clothing, and even your walls to figure out if there are stains that you haven’t yet found.
Once you locate the source of your problems you can turn the lights back on and figure out what to do next. Odors generated from these hidden stains can be tough to eliminate, but at least you’ll know where to start.
Odor Seal Your Walls
Yes, there’s a good chance that your dog pees on your walls. It’s not pleasant, but it can be part of your dog’s marking behavior. If he or she does this, you’ll need to invest in odor-sealing paint.
Dealing with odors that come from your walls is much harder than dealing with anything on your carpet. Odor-sealing paint is actually the easiest option, as the only other way that you can get rid of this kind of odor on your wall is to do some light demolition work and to replace the drywall itself.
Hide the Smells
If nothing else works, you might have to forgo eliminating the smells entirely. Instead, you’ll have to think about what you can do to hide the smells from those who are in your home.
There are plenty of great products that hide dog smells. From candles to perfumes, these substances temporarily overwhelm the dog smell so that your home smells like something else. Most won’t completely hide very strong dog smells, but they can be a great choice for those who have gotten rid of most of the offending odors.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How do I get rid of my dog’s smelly scent?
The best way to deal with dog odors is by keeping your house clean. Mop your hard surfaces, vacuum and clean your carpets, and make sure that you get rid of as much pet hair and dander as possible.
2. How can I deodorize my dog naturally?
While you can’t make your dog stop smelling, you can get rid of many dogs’ smells naturally. If you can keep your house clean and as free of dog hair as possible, you’ll notice that most of the stronger odors will go away on their own.