How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of Carpet


Looking for answers about how to get cat urine smell out of carpet isn’t new. It’s been one of the most common complaints by cat owners.

We know how bad cat urine sticks to carpets. Totally removing that undesirable odor is tough to do.

That Clean Cat Attitude

Cats are known to be meticulously clean. It’s obvious as cat owners will always need a clean cat litter box at home.

A cat’s habit of peeing and burying their feces in a litter box (or soil) isn’t mainly caused by their obsession with cleanliness.

It’s a natural feline instinct which tells who marks the territory or not. Cats who bury their waste do this to protect themselves from predators or dominant cats.

You, as the “dominant cat”, will see your cats do this unique trait.

But, there can be one misbehaving cat who'll mark his/her territory on your carpet.

How Bad Can Cat Urine Get

What’s problematic about a cat’s urine is its long-lasting “power” that surely marks the spot.

When left unnoticed, the bacterium in the urine decomposes and gives off a strong odor. The next stage of its decomposition emits mercaptans, the reason why skunk spray stinks.

Unneutered alpha male cats usually give off stronger smelling urine. It serves as a signal for other males to keep off their territory and let the females know they’re around.

Why Do Cats Pee Outside the Box

Peeing outside the litter box isn’t a form of revenge to someone, especially to the owner. It is a message you should pay attention to right away.

Here are the different possible reasons why your cat urinates outside the litter box:

Medical Problem

Not peeing in the litter box may mean your cat has some trouble. This can be related to medical issues such as urinary tract infections, kidney disease, and diabetes.

It can also be a sign of arthritis, which makes it tough for your cat to step into the box.

Behavioral Problem

If you’re living with more than one cat, there are chances that one of them will pee outside the litterbox.

This can likely happen if you only have one litter box for all. Unclean litter boxes can be a reason too.

Cats don’t like sharing boxes with others. Adding litter boxes can solve the problem.

Why the Carpet?

Cats peeing on your carpet often happen when moving or recarpeting.

Once they peed on it, they won’t think twice about doing it again. They can smell that it’s their territory.

But, your cat isn’t always to blame for the stench. Microbiological degradation of the carpet’s backing can be the culprit.

Microbiological degradation happens when bacteria forms in the latex backing of the carpet. The formation produces butyric acid that gives off the cat urine-like smell.

So check first the cause of the bad smell.

Ways on How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of Carpet

If you have confirmed that your cat is the main suspect in this stinky crime. It’s time to get into action – fast.

We know how awful cat urine smells like. What’s worse about it is it can’t be easily get rid off with a simple wash.

What do you do then? Don’t throw away that carpet yet as we’ve got some easy ways to remove the stink.

Here’s how to get cat urine smell out of carpet:

Blot it right away

Using clean paper towels or a rag, blot the peed on part of the carpet. Don’t rub! Apply pressure until you can’t soak up any more urine.

You will know if most of it is absorbed if your paper towel isn’t yellow stained anymore.

Rinse and vacuum

When you think there’s nothing more to absorb, rinse the part with water.

Get rid of the wet area by using a wet/dry vacuum cleaner. Don’t use a steam cleaner as it can set the stain instead.

Spray the area with enzyme cleaner

Enzyme cleaners contain biological enzymes that break down the acid in cat urine. It gets rid of the bad bacteria which causes the stink.

When using an enzyme cleaner, spray it generously around the area. You can also open the bottle itself to splash the cleaner on the spot.

Let it stay for 15 minutes and blot again. Let it dry.

If you’re dealing with old spots, you may need to reapply the enzyme cleaner for several times.

Go for vinegar

If the enzyme cleaner didn’t completely remove the odor, go for a vinegar solution.

Mix equal parts of vinegar and warm water in a spray bottle. Spray it on the area and leave it for 5 minutes.

You can either blot the spot again or leave it to dry.

Look closely

Use a black light or UV light to see if the spot is already clean.

Remove odor with baking soda

Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) is known as a natural cleaner and odor-absorber.

After the enzyme cleaner and vinegar solution treatment, wait for your carpet to dry. On the dried spot, sprinkle some baking soda on it. Leave it for an hour or longer.

After an hour, you can vacuum all the powder up. Check if the urine smell is still present.

DIY carpet freshener

Bring your carpet back to life with your own carpet freshener.

Mix simple ingredients such as 20-40 drops of your favorite essential oil into a half cup baking soda.

Sprinkle the powder over the carpet. Let it sit for 15 minutes and vacuum.

You can also mix dried herbs, cloves and cinnamon with baking soda for your DIY carpet freshener.

Small But Definitely Terrible

Cat urine isn't something you should leave to stink until it fades. It won't happen.

A tiny spot can entirely make your home smell bad - not only your carpet.

There are many tips on how to get cat urine smell out of the carpet. Unfortunately, not all can effectively get rid of the smell. It's even more difficult if you're dealing with an old stain.

If you feel like you've already done all that's advised about how to get cat urine smell out of carpet, it's time to call the experts who do pet urine and odor treatments.

Get your carpet cleaned professionally right away with OCD Home. Get a quote from us right now. 


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