How to Handle a Pet Stain
Pets have accidents. Sometimes they happen on the carpet. What should you do? There are a few options, and we can talk about the dos-and-don’ts associated with cleaning them, yourself. When should you hire someone vs. DIY, which carpet cleaning company will be the best choice if you do need to hire, how do you do it yourself, and what you should and should not use.
First lets look at the different types of pet stains
There are a few things to consider when dealing with pet stains. Is it Pee, Poo, or Puke?
Puke: Dogs and cats can have a variety of reasons they would vomit on a carpet. The might be sick, or the might have eaten something that would make them sick. Either case, you’ll need to assess if there is anything they have eaten that had a dye in it. Sometimes pet food has fillers and dyes. The dye will cause the kibble to be green, blue, or red depending in the brand. If there is a dye (you can usually look and see if there are any bright colors in the vomit), you will need to address the stain differently.
Poop: as stated above the pet can be sick or could have eaten something to make them sick. Again, you’ll want to address if there is anything other than poop.
Pee: This is probably the most common pet set we are called out to clean. This seems more cut and dry, right? Not always. The level of hydration a dog has can effect the concentration, and even the breed and gender. Male dogs typically have a stronger odor because the ‘mark’ territory. Pure breeds also typically have a stronger smell, also. So you will want to consider all of these things when making your decision to clean yourself. how to clean, or if you should hire a carpet cleaning professional.
Now lets decide if this is something you can handle on your own:
This will depend largely on what you want to accomplish. Odor removal and stain removal are 2 different things. If there is an odor, there is likely still bacteria. And, if there is bacteria, the likely hood of a stain is higher. Carpeting is a funny thing when it comes to stuff like this. It has the ability to hide stains, at times. That can be good, or bad.
Odor Removal: Removing an odor usually means removing and killing the bacteria. Gross removal of bacteria from carpet is easy; blot it up. Use a towel, paper towel, and old shirt.. whatever will absorb OR give you the ability to pickup the grosser material. Then, you want to absorb the lesser material. this can get tricky, because the more you press, the more you can potentially force the liquid part down into the backing to padding. So be cautious. After you feel like you’ve removed the lesser material, blot again. We recommend staying away from store bought “pet accident” products. Peroxide (3% from your local store) works really well at killing bacteria. In a lot of instances it is the best for stain removal too. If you have a lot of discoloration, try using a few drops of liquid detergent in a glass of water first. Then use the peroxide.
Stain Removal: As I’ve stated before, peroxide works really well for most organic stains. If you have any color issues (from dyes), other than from organic material, you’ll want to grab that detergent again, and gently blot out the discoloration. Scrubbing will cause the carpet fibers to bloom or blossom (see photo right) . Getting the grosser dyes out will be your best bet. Regardless of what you’ve heard, vinegar is NOT a good idea. Vinegar is acidic, and acids will causes stains to “set” or become permanent.
Now, how do yo decide if you should call a carpet cleaning professional
If you have tried the above recommendations, and do not feel like they are satisfactory, you should call a carpet cleaning professional. Or, if you don’t want to fuss with any of this and are worried you might cause more damage than good, you should call a carpet cleaner. If you decide to hire a carpet cleaning company to handle these pet stains read our article on how to choose the best carpet cleaning company