No matter how cute and cuddly your new Bichon Frise puppy is, you will eventually have to deal with the subject of dog urine stains in your home.
Your puppy has limited bladder control when you first get her, and one thing is certain. There will be accidents from time to time.
Of course there are more ways than one, to remove dog urine stains from floors and furniture in your home. But, if you are like me, you want to make sure that the products you use are safe for kids and dogs.
When you discover a new urine stain or you actually catch your puppy peeing on the rug or floor, immediately get a clean cloth or paper towels and sop up as much liquid as you can.
If you get the bulk of the urine right away, this will make your job easier.
An inexpensive liquid vacuum will suck up more liquid than you can with a cloth.
Several steps up and a little more money will get you a Hoover Carpet Cleaner with clean surge control to concentrate the cleaner where you need it. The Hoover vac actually removes stains, so with this handy 20 pound machine you’ll be done in a flash.
However, you don’t have to rent a steam cleaner or buy a rug cleaning machine for your carpets. You just have to know what kind of cleaners to use and what to avoid.
You want to get rid of the stain and smell and make sure your dog doesn’t repeat the dirty deed.
In this article, I’ll answer these questions:
- Why does your puppy keep using the same spot to pee?
- How to prevent repeat accidents
- How to find invisible urine stains – the old ones you can smell but can’t see
- What to use and what not to use for cleanup…
- Keep the stench down when disposing of urine soaked rags and pads
Why does your puppy keep using the same spot to pee?
Dogs are naturally programmed to mark their territories. Male dogs, especially will mark their territories (including inside your home) when they see other dogs.
Urine marking is how dogs and wolves let other dogs and wolves know that they are claiming this area for their own. Male dogs use marking to warn other dogs to stay away from their territory.
However, all dogs will go back to pee and poop where they (or other dogs) have gone potty before. That’s why it’s pretty easy to house train a dog to go outside in a particular spot. Once he has gone there, it smells right and he will return again and again.
That’s outside. Let’s say your dog has started to use a corner of the living room as his bathroom. You definitely don’t want that to continue. So how do you get this bad habit to stop?
How to prevent repeat accidents
The first thing that you’ll have to do is thoroughly clean the area that is urine stained and smelly. Doing this will rid the area of the urine marking scent. More about what to use or not use later.
Next, you will need to make sure that your dog understands that the area will now be used for something other than his bathroom.
How can you do that? There are several ways. You just need to establish that this area is now to be used for something else.
- Move your dog’s food and water bowls to the area. Your dog instinctively will want to keep his eating area clean. He will not soil an area close to his bowl.
- Place your dog’s bed in the bathroom area. He will not soil the area near his bed either.
- Groom your dog in the area.
- Play with your dog in the area. Place his basket or box of toys in the area.
- Sit on the floor with your dog in the area and read or use your tablet or phone.
Any of these activities will show your dog that you are now using the area for something different.
Change the smell of the “bathroom” area
In addition, you can also make the “bathroom” area unpleasant or unacceptable for bathroom use to your pet. Angry Orange is a product that most cats and dogs dislike, even though you will find it nice if you like the smell of oranges.
And, if you, like me, like the smell of essential oils, you might try this. Mix ½ cup of baking soda with a couple of drops of tea tree essential oil and a couple of drops of lavender essential oil. Sprinkle all over your carpet. Leave it on the carpet for at least a couple of hours, then vacuum.
Essential oils are very concentrated oils from plants and flowers. Tea tree essential oil and lavender essential oil both have powerful antimicrobial activity and can kill bacteria and molds. Just add a few drops to your wash water to disinfect the urine stained area.
Essential oils are safe to use around your dog in small amounts, but do not let your puppy or dog lick the container.
Assuming that you did a thorough cleaning of the “bathroom” area, there may still be another issue. Your dog may have urinated in a location that you didn’t know about.
Bichon Frise dogs are noted for finding hidden little corners to pee and poop.
How to find those invisible urine stains, the old ones you can smell but can’t see
If you use enzymatic cleaners, they will continue to work, even after you have mopped up the wet areas. But what if you didn’t find a spot or two?
They will still stink even if you can’t see them. And the smell will continue to off-gas and haunt you for up to 5 years, if left untreated.
So how do you find them? Luckily there is a little invention designed to help you. An ultraviolet black light flashlight will detect hidden urine stains on your carpet, furniture and flooring. When you find the stains, you can treat them to get rid of both the stains and the odors.
When the pet urine is gone, nothing will show under the black light. You can now be sure that the dog urine odor and germs are also gone.
What to use and what not to use for cleanup
Of course there is a good way to remove dog urine stains and some ineffective ones. And there are some ideas floating around on the internet that will only make your dog urine stain and smell problem worse!
For example, even though ammonia is a strong cleaning agent, it smells like urine to your dog. That’s because urine contains ammonia. So this will attract your dog’s attention, rather than repelling him.
Some people recommend using vinegar for dog stains and smells, while others say that vinegar is just another attractant to a dog.
Tracie Hotchner, veterinarian, radio talk show host and author of The Dog Bible recommends using liquid cleaning products with enzymes for cleaning dog urine stains. You can access her shows on the Radio Pet Lady Network online.
Enzymes actually neutralize the urine, feces, blood or vomit instead of cleaning them superficially or masking the odors temporarily. Two products that work well are Bubbas Commercial Pet Urine Cleaner and Rocco and Roxie Professional Stain Remover.
How to keep the stench down when getting rid of urine soaked rags and pads
There is still one little problem remaining. What to do with all those smelly paper towels, rags or puppy pads that are reeking of a dog urine odor.
A Litter Genie pail was actually made for cats’ litter, to keep the smell and germs contained. Some people are using this product for small dogs and for puppy pads. You will need to empty it once a week for a Bichon Frise or for a puppy who is peeing in the house every day.
Especially if you live in an apartment or city home where you have to hold your trash until trash pickup, this solution could help keep your home smelling fresh.
So, you need to stay on top of dog stains to keep the odor down and to prevent your dog from repeatedly peeing and pooping in the house.
Keeping your home clean and fresh goes a long way toward keeping it free from dog urine stains and odors.