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How to Get Rid of Dog Poop Smell in the House: 4 Possible Ways

Written by: Nicole Cosgrove

Last Updated on April 23, 2024 by Dogster Team

Cute dog pooping inside the house

How to Get Rid of Dog Poop Smell in the House: 4 Possible Ways

Caring for your beloved dog is an experience that brings infinite joy, but sometimes that happiness takes a dive when you discover an unwanted pile of excrement in your home. Dogs prefer to relieve themselves away from their food and water, and when they cannot make it outside, some pups will deposit their waste in an inconspicuous area. Whether you have an untrained puppy, a healthy adult, or a senior pup, we’ll show you how to remove dog poop odor and prevent repeat occurrences. dogster face divider

Before You Start

Although frequent indoor accidents can signify a medical condition, a random incident may result from forgetting to take the dog outside or an upset stomach from eating a new brand of dog food. Using a professional cleaning service to remove foul odors is effective, but you can use less expensive methods to keep your floors and carpets clean. Some of the supplies you’ll need for our DIY cleaning projects include:

  • Microfiber towels
  • Paper towels
  • Rubber gloves
  • White distilled vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Enzymatic cleaner
  • Water
Cleaning supplies stored in shelf
Image By: Africa Studio, Shutterstock

Cleaning Fresh Stains

A fresh pile of poop is much easier to clean than a dried one, but luckily, both types can be removed with a bit of elbow grease and chemical magic. Since vinegar can stain hardwood if it sits too long, we suggest using the second method for wood floors.

How to Get Rid of Dog Poop Smell in the House (4 Ways)

1. Vinegar Solution

Cost: Low
Project time: 30 to 60 minutes

A feces pile recently deposited on your carpet does not penetrate the fibers as thoroughly as a dried one, and it’s typically easier to clean than a dried stain. However, diarrhea stains are a different story. If your dog has sprayed liquid excrement on your carpet, you’ll have to follow our instructions for treating a dried stain.

For solid piles, carefully remove the poop with a pooper scooper or piece of cardboard. You can remove the solids with rubber gloves, but be sure not to apply too much pressure to prevent pushing the material deeper into the carpet. Deposit the waste in a plastic bag and place it in your outdoor trash bin. Next, mix 1 cup of water with 1 cup of vinegar and pour the solution on the spot. Wait 5 minutes, then blot the stain with a microfiber towel or paper towels. Repeat the process several times until the odor has dissipated.

Image By: NatureFriend, Pixabay

2. Enzymatic Cleaner

Cost: Moderate
Project time: 20 to 40 minutes

After removing the poop with a scooper or gloves, put the waste in a plastic bag and deposit it in your trash can outside. Spray the stain with an enzymatic cleaner and wait 10 minutes. Blot the stain with a towel and continue to add the cleaner as the stain dries. Enzymatic cleaners are more effective than vinegar solutions, and you should not have to repeat the process more than two or three times to remove the odor and stain.

Our favorite enzyme cleaner is the Hepper Advanced Bio-Enzyme Pet Stain & Odor Eliminator Spray. It is a highly effective solution that can permanently remove even the most stubborn pet stains and odors. This product makes cleaning up a breeze and leaves your home smelling fresh and clean. What's more, they offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee! Click here to order a bottle today and transform your home cleaning routine.

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Cleaning Dried Stains

Since dogs eat an omnivorous diet, their poop is full of decomposing proteins that produce a pungent stench. The smell is so strong that you’re likely to locate the mess before the material becomes petrified like a pile outside. However, some dogs hide their accidents in strange places, like your closet. Those places can hide the smell and allow the solids to dry.

If you’re dealing with a diarrhea mess, let the material dry before removing it. However, if the waste is in the middle of a living room or bedroom and you cannot handle waiting, you can soak up the feces with several paper towels and deposit them in an outdoor trash can.

3. Vinegar and Baking Soda Method

Cost: Low
Project time: 6 to 12 hours

You can use this technique on carpet or tile, but we suggest only using an enzymatic cleaner on hardwood floors. Vinegar can discolor the wood if left on the surface too long. Mix a cup of lukewarm water with 1 cup of vinegar and spray the stain. Next, cover the area with baking soda. The liquid will react to the powder and begin foaming. Carefully blot the stain with a towel and allow the spot to dry for at least 6 hours or until the carpet is dry. Vacuum the area thoroughly and check for lingering odors or stains. Repeat the process if you detect any remaining smell.

Vinegar and Baking Soda
Image By: _JPC-PROD, Shutterstock

4. Enzymatic Cleaner Again

Cost: Moderate
Project time: 20 minutes to 6 hours

Spray the stain with the enzymatic cleaner and wait 10 minutes for the solution to react. Blot the stain with a towel and reapply the cleaner. Enzymatic products attack the odor-causing bacteria and reduce the chance of a repeat occurrence. Unlike vinegar and baking soda, enzymatic cleaners remove your dog’s scent entirely and require fewer applications to remove the odor. For massive stains caused by diarrhea, you can use the same procedure, but you’ll have to leave the cleaner on the stain for longer. Allow the cleaner to work for 2 or 3 hours and reapply if you notice any fecal scent.

dogster face divider Preventing Indoor Accidents

Potty training is essential for any dog owner, but some dogs learn the correct procedures faster than others. If your pet has problems defecating indoors, you can implement these methods to keep the waste outside.

Increase the Frequency of Outdoor Breaks

Most adult dogs require at least three to five trips outside for bathroom breaks, but you can increase the frequency if your dog still relieves itself indoors. Dogs learn new commands and tricks with repetition, and they’re less likely to have accidents in your home when they follow a routine. If you let your dog out at the same time every day, it can adapt to the procedure quicker and reduce the urge to go inside.

hungarian vizsla dog poops in the green park
Image Credit: SasaStock, Shutterstock

Create a Calm Environment

Thunder, power tools, fireworks, and other loud noises can scare dogs and make them believe that going outdoors is not a safe option. A terrified dog may decide to urinate or defecate indoors to avoid the noise, but you can reassure your dog that the disturbance is only temporary.

You can create a safe area for your pet under the bed, in the closet, or in a crate. Leave some of your dog’s toys in the room and reward the dog with a treat when it retreats to the safe zone. You can also distract your pet with a chew toy and calm the pup down with plenty of petting and love. If your dog experiences severe anxiety, you can talk to your veterinarian about prescribing calming medications or supplements.

Treat Separation Anxiety

Dogs left alone for long periods sometimes suffer from anxiety, but you can minimize the dog’s stress by modifying your procedures for packing and leaving home.

  • Keep your luggage hidden from your dog until you leave. Dragging out the luggage the night before may reveal that you’re planning to leave your dog. You can pack your belongings when your dog is outside or asleep and keep the items in a closet until the morning of your trip.
  • Leave some of your clothes on the dog’s bed and play areas. Your scent can have a calming effect when the pup experiences stress.
  • Pay your dog sitter extra to play with your pup and take it for multiple walks.
  • Consult your pet’s doctor for prescription medication that can alleviate stress. Be sure to go over the correct dosage with your dog sitter.

Take Your Dog to the Veterinarian

If your efforts to prevent the dog from defecating indoors have failed, you should take your pet to the veterinarian for a complete examination. A random pile on the floor is not a cause for concern, but frequent bouts of diarrhea may indicate a medical problem such as:

  • Food allergies or sensitivities
  • Viruses
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBS)
  • Bacterial infections
  • Bowel cancer
  • Roundworms, hookworms, heartworms
vet. examining labrador dog
Image By: SeventyFour, Shutterstock

Describe the Poop’s Appearance to Your Veterinarian

Although nature scenes and friends are more fun to photograph, you can take several pictures of your dog’s indoor accidents to help your vet determine the appropriate treatment. You can view the American Kennel Club’s (AKC) “color wheel of poop” for examples of unhealthy fecal coloring.

Healthy stools are chocolate brown, and any extreme colors may indicate a condition that requires immediate treatment. However, you should also photograph the food and treats consumed before the vet visit. Any food with artificial colors could potentially change the color of the feces.

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When the smell of dog feces hits you first thing in the morning or when you come home from work, your repulsion can turn into anger. Punishing a dog for indoor defecating is a cruel and ineffective technique that can weaken the bond you share with the dog.

Canines have short-term memories, and any punishment for a pile produced several minutes or hours before will only result in confusion and fear. Treating a stain with household chemicals or specialty cleaners is a simple process, but you should also take steps to correct the behavior. Modifying your training routine and taking your pup to the doctor will ensure your home smells fresh and your floors are clean.

Featured Image Credit: ThamKC, Shutterstock

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