Pick up the phone any time you see a change in your pee that doesn’t seem linked to new medications or a recent meal — especially if the change lasts more than a day or so, or if it comes with a fever, back or side pain, vomiting, feeling very thirsty, or discharge. Your doctor can test your urine to see what’s going on.
Oprah Winfrey is an expert on many things, including best stain removers. Who knew?! Check out her advice on how to get pee smell out of carpet on Live with Kelly & Michael. She even recommends one of our top picks!
Consider steam-cleaning the carpet. If the enzymatic cleaner didn’t remove the stain completely, consider renting a steam cleaner or hiring a professional to do the job for you. Make sure to ask if they have a product to add into their solution designed for pet stains. Stains are a lot easier to remove when they’re fresh, so try to decide quickly if this is what you need to do.
CR’s take: This Hoover performs at two extremes. It gets the poorest marks for cleaning of all the carpet cleaners in our tests but one of the best scores for leaving behind a dry carpet, an Excellent. It does have some nice convenience features, such as separate tanks for clean and dirty water, a 100-inch hose, a carrying handle, and brush attachments. Unfortunately, features don’t make up for poor performance.
“On the other hand, if you have carpeted stairs, you want to get a carpet cleaner that has a long hose, so you can reach up the steps,” says Larry Ciufo, who oversees Consumer Reports’ carpet cleaner tests. “You don’t want to put the cleaner on the top step and pull on the hose when you’re cleaning, because the machine could barrel down the steps.”
Another cause for musty smelling urine is phenylketonuria or PKU. This is a genetic condition that causes the buildup of phenylalanine, an amino acid that cannot be processed, in the blood and even your brain. As this buildup continues unchecked, it could cause brain damage and must, therefore, be treated as soon as possible. Behavioral problems like tantrums, having fairer eyes, hair, and skin than siblings who don’t have the problem, vomiting, eczema, epilepsy, tremors and musty smelling breath are other signs of this ailment.13
Thank you Thank you Thank you. I spent my whole weekend cleaning my family room carpet with a carpet cleaning machine, about 3-4 times. Today it STILL smelled like urine. I tried the recipe and it worked GREAT. I put the vinegar/water mixture in my machine and went over the stinky area. My carpets are pretty dry after the machine sucks all the water up so I went right to the next step and a few hours later I am crawling around on my hands and knees trying to find the urine smell but it is nowhere to be found!!!! : )
Be warned, you may want to not be as vocal as I was when I was so impressed with the results that this cleaner had produced. It cleaned so well that I told my ENTIRE extended family and now everyone wants to try (borrow) mine, grrrr…. I’m literally having to organize a schedule so I can get it back in time to clean our rugs as I want to clean them at least twice a month so they do not get as bad as they were EVER again! I told everyone that I want it to come back with a “FULL TANK” LOL *meaning I want a FULL container of cleaning solution when it finally gets back to me! 😉
Your recommendation is good. Remember, you may want to soak up the residual moisture with baking soda. Cover it with a paper towel and place a heavy book on top and let it sit overnight. Remove paper towel the next day and see if the baking soda is yellow or white. If white, let it air dry until it can be vacuumed up. If yellow, repeat the process.
2) Vinegar can direct your pet (cat, dog or rabbit), to pee in the spot where it was used. Don’t believe me? Read the human society’s website. If you put vinegar down, you are just going to have more accidents from your pet going in that spot.
The first step is to grab a length of around six sheets of kitchen roll, fold this into a six sheet thick square and press it down onto the wet area of the carpet with your foot. Repeat with fresh kitchen roll until the area is as dry as you can get it.
From sweet smelling pee that shrieks of uncontrolled diabetes to urine that smells strongly of ammonia due to urinary stones or musty due to liver trouble, the reasons for the change in the smell of your urine are numerous. At times, an unusual urine odor may also stem from underlying medical causes such as dehydration, UTIs, or maple syrup urine disease.
So, without further ado, let’s discuss three of the best pre-cleaner shampoos around. They’re made for cleaning carpets and if you combine them with the right machine… you’ll never have to worry about a stained or smelly carpet again.
If you’ve got a carpet cleaner already, then this might be just the solution you’re looking for. If not, you can try and mix it in a spray bottle to take advantage of the lowered cost but you might be better off with one of the other standalone products we recommend.
7. I CANNOT STRESS ENOUGH how well this thing picks up hair and carpet fuzz! I would never have thought that a carpet that is 10 years old, is vacuumed once a day with a Dyson and shampooed PROFESSIONALLY twice a year would have any fuzz left, let alone tons of pet hair and let me tell you, this thing brings it up. I did shampoo the room twice over (once through, then go back again) and it was AS FULL the second time of pet hair as it was the first. AMAZING!!!!!!!!! Made me want to immediately do a third time over, but alas, my bad back was out after two times over this extra large room of carpet. It will occasionally leave long strands of matted fuzz and fur in its wake when I am using it. This could also be considered a “CON” because you have to bend over and pick these up all over the carpet. 🙂 Lazy. I know.
If your home has pet odor problems, you’re in for one of the toughest odor removal projects known to man. That doesn’t mean you should give up hope. It just means that depending on the nature of the odor, and the material, this isn’t going to be an easy task.
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3. Works very well at stain removal using just the beater bar/floor tool and no attachment/hand held for tough foot traffic stains. I have not used it to remove set in pet stains so far as I use a “cat urine” eliminator “Get Serious” to remove the cat urine smell and it also removes the stains. I haven’t tried to remove old urine stains yet with it since I have none after having used GET SERIOUS. It does remove yellowed spots where I have allowed the cat urine to set for long periods (because it was behind a piece of furniture that only gets moved once a month when we move it to vac under it), but a month is hardly time to judge a yellow urine stain as “set in”. I have removed brown rust colored stains that the last professional carpet shampooer company “brought up” (Funny, they were in the middle of an open room and at the base of our stairs where no stain was prior to their coming and the stain wasn’t there until we refused for the umpteenth time their attempt to up-sell us on worthless products!!) and I had previously been unable to get that stain out using my Little Green Machine without it coming back up to the surface after a few weeks. I have only had this machine two weeks and have used it on the room 3 times in order to do a deep thorough clean and also to try and get some pet hair out. I have used it in “spots”, too but only a total room clean 3 times.
Isopropyl alcohol, better known as rubbing alcohol, is an effective disinfectant and has antibacterial properties. Its powerful scent is not agreeable for canines. Dilute rubbing alcohol using one part alcohol and one part water and spray it on your carpets. Reapply the mixture weekly or after each cleaning of the carpets.
Wash toys, bedding, and accessories regularly. Pet smells build up over time, so it’s important to stay on top of cleaning and washing. Wash your pet’s bed, fabric toys, leashes, and collars in the washing machine every month. Wash hard toys every month in the sink with soap and water. Water bowls need more frequent attention–wash these with soap and water every week.[16]
As for rented apartments.. mmm keep cleaning.. or ask your landlord if you can replace the carpet with something else. Its in their interests to say yes really because if it smells of pee when you move out, though they will take your deposit, they still have to get a replacement put in..
However, if you do want to use the hydrogen peroxide, make sure you only ever use 3% solution and that you always check for color-fastness on an inconspicuous area first as it could bleach the fibers of the carpet, leaving a permanent light patch as a reminder of the accident!
One of the nice things about this product is that it has Scotchguard built right into it, meaning that you get the cleaning and odor removal followed by a protective layer that will stay in place on the offending rug.
I have put together a list of the carpet cleaning machines that offers the best systems to  remove pet odour, handles very tough stains and has great features  that really help when you are cleaning up after your pet.
Allow the area to dry completely. Once the area is thoroughly dry, vacuum up the baking soda. A fan or heater can assist drying. The baking soda absorbs the odor and urine. (Use a hard bristled brush to loosen up the baking soda if necessary.) 
Thanks justmesuzanne, but I haven’t found any odor problems after treating the area promptly with just vinegar and baking soda. Listerine is a good tip (apparently this product was first invented as a floor cleaner and only later became a mouthwash!!). I would definitely recommend checking that it has no effect on the color of the carpet by testing in an inconspicuous area first though.
Sophia: I really need to do something about this problem in the house we just moved into 3 weeks ago. Before we moved into this house we had the entire carpet professionally steam cleaned. The carpet cleaner could smell dog urine as soon as he came into the house (it was a rainy day). It has been three weeks and we still smell it in a couple of the rooms.
I just recently bought a Bissell ProHeat 2X® Steam Cleaner as we have an 8 month old Boxer that still has accidents.. With the steam cleaner I used Bissell 2X Pet Stain & Odor Formula.. For the smaller areas where she still has some tiny accidents I have used Bissell Pet Stain & Odor Remover – Spray, I’m very sensitive to smells (not like an animal though ) and I have been unable to smell the urine since using these products. I have also noticed when she has another “accident” it’s not in the area I have cleaned, it will be in a new area..
If pet accidents are a regular part of your life, invest in an at-home carpet cleaning machine like the Bissell Spotbot. The sooner you clean up the urine, the easier it will be to get that stubborn dog pee smell out.
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Great article Sally, definitely covers this topic in-depth! However, we’ve got some carpets in a rental apartment that have old, and I mean really old, and now somewhat crusty, pee. What would you recommend as the best carpet cleaner for old pet urine?
First and obligatory action is immediately after noticing to remove a significant amount of moisture with a sponge and then to start washing the spot with the solution of water and vinegar. Some people just dilute the vinegar with the water in a ratio 1:3 but there are several opinions on this subject. We can try also to prepare the smell cleaning liquid in a different way.
The shade, light or dark, also changes. If it has no color at all, that may be because you’ve been drinking a lot of water or taking a drug called a diuretic, which helps your body get rid of fluid. Very dark honey- or brown-colored urine could be a sign that you’re dehydrated and need to get more fluids right away. It may also be a warning sign of liver problems, so see your doctor if it doesn’t get better after a day or so.
We’ve picked out five of the best, modern cleaning products to help you deal with piddle stains and the resulting odor. Each is uniquely suited for something, and all of them are worthwhile for the animal owner who wants to keep their home from smelling and their carpets from being stained by the machinations of their dogs and cats.
If some stubborn soda still remains after you vacuum once, spay a light mist of vinegar and water over it to re-wet the baking soda, and place a dry rag over the area for another hour or two until it dries again. Then vacuum a second time.
If you don’t have hydrogen peroxide on hand you can substitute it with a laundry spray stain remover. Check the bottle. If it says ‘Oxy’ anywhere on the label then it probably contains hydrogen peroxide. Preen, Sard, OxiClean etc.
This thing will clean your carpet – no doubt about that – especially if you use the Bissell chemicals with it – but some really annoying things that you find out while you’re using it. (1) The solution tank cannot stand up by itself as it has no flat side on the opposite side of the inlet. You cannot put the tank down after putting any liquid in it as it will spill. Ya, really. (2) 1 hole on the plastic body is too small for the screw. You can try to tighten it but you risk cracking the plastic housing or stripping the screw head or both. (3) It should take nothing to add a mechanism that lifts up the brushes off the floor when using the attachments. I wound up with a burn spot on my carpet due to the brushes continuously hitting the same spot for about 10 minutes while cleaning the stairs. (4) The water is supposed to be heated, but I checked it with my hand and could not tell the difference from when I first put it in. This is an OK machine that could be a terrific machine with just a couple of tweaks.
If you’re not concerned with brand names, and just want a solid carpet cleaner that makes one of the best ways to get dog hair out of carpet… well, the Rug Doctor may be just the solution you’re looking for.