Pepper’s first day in our new home became quite an event. Our new puppy was so excited to explore her new family and surroundings, running all over the place, ears flapping behind her, with the kids not far behind in a frenzy of excitement themselves.
Our new puppy got to meet the family cat and friendly neighbors, plus she got a bundle of tasty treats. Not long after, Pepper had another first experience – making a little mess on the carpet.
The good news was that we didn’t blame her for making this mess, as most new dog owners do. The bad news was that we were left with a spot on the carpet – a spot that would hold the potty scent, drawing Cocoa there again and again for another bathroom break when she felt the urge.
The Proper Way To Clean Up Puppy Accidents
The first thing to do when there’s a potty accident is to clean it up as best possible. With urine, blot up as much of the liquid as you can with paper towels. With feces, pick it up gently without further rubbing it into the floor. Do not grab your household carpet cleaner; it won’t work on this kind of stain.
Regular household detergents and cleaners don’t help with cleaning up after accidents because the scent always remains, which encourages the puppy or even other dogs to reuse the same area over and over again.
There are a few spray cleaners available specifically for pet cleanupthat contain odor and stain removers. They are excellent for small accidents.
Use an enzyme product
There are also products that contain enzymes that naturally break down the chemicals in the waste and eradicates any odors. These enzyme productsare effective, though it’s important not to use other cleaners before the enzyme product. Use these products thoroughly because dog noses are many times more sensitive than our own.
Cleaning accidents properly with an enzyme product solution will dramatically reduce the time it takes to house train your dog because he won’t be drawn back to the same areas. Enzyme solutions “digest” the organic material in the carpet or wood to eliminate the odor. If you do not use an enzyme product, your dog will likely be drawn back to use the same spot again because of the scent. Sometimes you may want to try using a black light because you can use it to see soiled areas that you can’t see with the naked eye.
Emergency Tips for Cleaning Up Potty Accidents
1) Never use ammonia. Urine contains ammonia, so the chemical will keep attracting your dog to the spot. Bleach is a better cleaner, but rinse it well. Be sure to use color-safe bleach on certain areas.
2) White vinegar is a good odor remover if you don’t have any professional cleaners on hand; use one-quarter cup to a quarter of water. Start out conservatively and add more if needed.
3) Salt will absorb fresh urine and remove some of the scent. Try to get to it fast.
4) If in a pinch, rubbing the area with a dryer sheet can remove some of the odor.
5) Baking soda works well if you have some on hand. Rubbed into a urine stain it can remove some of the odor.
6) If the urine scent on your wooden floor won’t come out, consider painting or sealing it. Unfortunately, wood flooring can be a bit tough, if not impossible, to get dog stains out.
7) A peroxide-and-water solution will help get rid of carpet stains. Experiment with various strengths of the solution.
8) White toothpaste can get some tough stains out of carpets.
9) And of course, if the stains are too bad and nothing seems to help, call a professional carpet cleaner. They have the heavy-duty cleaning machinery needed to really dig into the stain and extract as much of it as possible, more than you or I could ever do by hand.
In the end, don’t worry if your dog leaves a spot or two on the carpet. It happens, especially for new starter puppies coming home. A few simple products and a little bit of elbow grease will get them out. Your best bet for having a clean floor is to get your puppy outside to his potty spot before he squats. An ounce of prevention is worth 10 rolls of wall-to-wall carpet!
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