How to Get Rid of Pet Smells in the House – Stinky No More!

Every dog owner has probably dealt with the dilemma of removing pet smells in their house. If you own a breed like Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Saint Bernard, and other furry canines, there’s a chance that your home has the distinctive “doggy scent”. In this post, we will help you on how to get rid of pet smells in the house with practical and easy-to-do steps.

What causes pet smell?

Did you know that the smell of your pooch says something about its health? If you’ve just bathed your dog and the foul odor doesn’t go away, it’s a sign that your pooch has an underlying condition.

The most common cause of bad dog smell is the presence of yeast. This organism metabolizes the oils on the dog’s skin, which causes the stinky problem. And if your doggo is soiled and dirty, the smell would be much worse. Over time, the smell will stick to your couch, carpet, and other furniture. This could give a negative impression on your guests.

Another potential cause of bad odor among canines is the advanced infestation of skin parasites. As the parasites form wounds on your dog’s skin, it can contract an infection that will produce a bad smell.

Take note that the bad smell becomes worse when your dog is wet. This is due to the increase in the smell-producing compounds on your dog’s skin.

Also, the bad odor is the strongest on your dog’s coat, anus, mouth, vulva, and ears. This is why regular grooming of these parts is very important if you want to get rid of the pet smell in your home.

Another culprit to the smelly problem is the skin folds of the dog. Breeds like Basset Hounds and Pugs have more skin folds than other canines. Such skin folds can trap moisture and dirt, which can lead to the formation of odor.

Should I call the vet with regard to pet odor?

Usually, an awful smell on your dog’s coat isn’t enough reason to phone the vet. However, if the scent lingers even after grooming, there’s nothing to lose if you call the veterinarian. It’s possible that your doggo is suffering from an underlying condition, much so if the smell if coming from the canine’s mouth.

Also, it’s possible that your dog’s current medication is causing a bad smell. You can ask the vet to switch your dog to an alternative medication if that’s the case.

How to get rid of pet smells in the house

Wondering how to get rid of pet smells in the house? Here are some of the effective ways to remove the nasty smell at your home brought by your furry friend:

-Start vacuuming

The first thing that you have to do is to vacuum around your home. This is effective in removing stuck fur, dander, and other allergens. Although vacuuming alone won’t remove the odor, it’s a good start for the succeeding cleaning methods we’re going to discuss here.

You’ll be surprised by how much dust your carpet holds. After taking several runs on your carpet, it’s time to vacuum the couch and other furniture. Use a crevice tool so you can vacuum even the tiniest gaps.

Don’t forget to vacuum your curtains before putting it on the wash. This way, you won’t have to deal with a lot of dander.

As much as a typical vacuum works well, you should consider purchasing vacuums made specifically for pets. This has better filtration systems that can catch as much dander as possible. 

-Clean pet stains with an enzyme cleaner

Another reason why your house stinks is pet stains. It’s possible that your doggo peed on the carpet, which dried up without you noticing. This will cause intense odor which can be very difficult to remove.

Using soap and water wouldn’t be enough to get rid of pet stains. Instead, you should use an enzyme cleaner to remove the stains from within. Unlike detergents, enzyme cleaners have live organisms that will consume the stains. Once there’s no stain left, the organisms will die and start to fade away. So after cleaning, there will be no remaining residues.

The good thing about enzyme cleaners is that it’s usually safe for all-around applications. Once it dries, it’s safe for pets and kids to access the area. 

-Steam clean the carpets

Once you’re done vacuuming and cleaning the pet stains, the next move is to steam clean the carpet and other thick fabrics you can’t put in the wash. Steam cleaning is a great way to neutralize odors and to disinfect surfaces.

If you don’t have a steam cleaner, you can hire a steam cleaning service instead. Just make sure that you or the cleaning service uses non-toxic chemicals. Also, while you perform the cleaning, you must put your dog away on the crate. Steam cleaning uses hot vapors which can injure both canines and humans.

After the steam cleaning procedure, we recommend putting your pet on a doggy diaper. Some canines tend to re-mark the carpet or couch if the smell has changed.

You should also mop the floors to remove any traces of your dog’s elimination or dander.

-Wash the sheets

After that, throw your sheets and curtains on the wash. Wash it like usual to remove any smell that could have stuck on the fabrics.

Take note that you should also wash your pillowcases, mattress sheets, and even cushion covers. It’s possible that your dog has touched or lied down to any of these.

Also, you should consider washing your clothes as well. Since you hug your dog, it’s possible that your clothes will also smell like your pet.

If you are to air dry everything, do so in a place where your dog has no access. You wouldn’t want your newly washed clothes to smell like a wet dog. When that happens, you’d have to redo the washing, which is a waste of your time.

-Wash your dog’s cot

One thing that you shouldn’t forget to wash is your dog’s bed. This item is where your dog sleeps and spends a great deal of time. There’s also a chance that your pooch has peed on it. Take note that your dog’s bed is covered in dander, saliva, and all nasty substances that came from your pet’s body. With that, you should never wash the bed with other fabrics.

We recommend using an enzyme cleaner as a pre-treatment to your dog’s bed. This will help remove the stains off the cot before giving it a regular wash. Make sure that you dry the bed properly so there wouldn’t be any trapped moisture that could lead to odor buildup.

The goal here is not just to remove superficial dirt, but to ensure that the core of your dog’s bed is clean as well.

-Ventilate the place

While you’re doing the cleaning, open the windows and doors. This is to let fresh air and sunlight in.

Sunlight is a natural deodorizer that kills bacteria. Also, by letting fresh air in, your home will have better air movement. This will help remove the trapped smell from your dog as well as your kitchen and bathroom.

However, ventilating your place this way can be a little challenging during the winter and summer seasons. With that, you may want to schedule the odor removal drill on milder weather.

Aside from opening doors and windows, you should also turn your fans on. However, you should leash or crate your dog so it wouldn’t bolt out of the door or bring in more dirt.

-Change the filters of your AC

Ask yourself this question: when is the last time that you’ve changed your AC’s filter? If you have cleaned everything and there’s still a whiff of the doggy smell, it’s possible that the dirt from your AC filter is recirculating. This is due to the thick dust accumulation on the filter.

Depending on your AC filter, you can either replace or wash the filter. Either way should solve the problem.

Aside from the lingering bad smell, a dirty air filter can also cause unexplained respiratory problems. If the occupants of the property keep on having colds and cough for no reason, you must check your air filters immediately.

-Bathe your dog regularly

Of course, the dog smell would only be gone if you bathe your dog regularly. Unlike humans, dogs don’t need to take a daily bath. The rule of thumb is once a month if your pooch gets soiled easily. For those with indoor doggos, bathing can be done once every three months.

You should always use a deodorizing shampoo to keep your dog smelling fresh. Also, it will help prevent bacterial formation on your dog’s coat.

Also, you should brush your dog’s coat daily. This way, you can remove any dirt that may get stuck on their fur. This will also reduce the odor buildup of your pet.

-Set limits on your dog’s access in the house

Once you’re done cleaning everything, we recommend limiting your dog’s access to parts of your home. As much as possible, don’t let your dog jump on the couch or your bed. Also, you may want to keep them off the carpet unless the pooch has taken a bath.

We also recommend that you come up with a comfy spot for your dog. This way, your pooch will have its own cozy area in the house and it will not invade your space.

-Use an air purifier with charcoal filter

Lastly, use an air purifier with a charcoal filter. This will keep on filtering the indoor air to prevent odor buildup in your home. We recommend that you look for one with a HEPA filter and a charcoal filter for the best filtration.

You should turn this on the whole day so the air filter can sieve any allergens and malodors. And like your AC, you must change the filters regularly as a way on how to get rid of pet smells in the house.

Are you looking for more tips on how to get rid of pet smells in the house? Here are more hacks courtesy of Marissa Antoinett:

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Does dog smell go away on its own?

A: If you don’t do anything about the smell, it’s unlikely that the awful odor will go away. You have to clean the place to remove the sources of smell. It could be dried urine stains, accumulated dander, and other excretion from your dog’s body.

Q: Which dogs smell the most?

A: While all dog breeds can develop the smelly problem, some breeds are more prone to becoming stinky. Among these dogs are Beagles, Cocker Spaniels, Basset Hounds, Golden Retrievers, and Labrador Retrievers.

Q: Do air purifiers work for dog odor?

A: Yes! Air purifiers are helpful in removing malodors in your home. It sucks the air in then filters it before releasing it back. Just make sure that you have a HEPA filter as well as a charcoal filter to remove the odors and other allergens in the air.

Q: What are the least smelly dogs?

A: Although all dogs will develop a bad odor if not groomed well, some breeds are less likely to go stinky. With proper care, the likes of Dachshund, Bichon Frise, Poodle, Whippet, Basenji, and Schnauzer will not smell as bad as other canines.

Q: How often should you wash your dog?

A: If you’re busy, the rule of thumb is to bathe your dog fully once every three months. If possible, you must groom your dog at least once a month, especially if it’s among the breeds that smell a lot.

Final words

Knowing how to get rid of pet smells in the house can be challenging for some. Many dog owners don’t know where to start or where the smell is coming from. Using this simple guide, we hope that you can start cleaning and breaking free of the nasty smell inside your home.

Just make sure that you keep your dog clean as well so they won’t spread more dirt and smell in your home.

What do you think of these steps? Do you have additional methods to remove dog smell? Let us know in the comment section!