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How To Get Wet Dog Smell Out Of Your Carpet & Sofa

Updated: Aug 6, 2023

Dogs are lovable and loyal companions, they often make a home that much more friendly and welcoming, but they can also leave behind a distinct odour that can be difficult to remove from carpets.

Whether your furry friend has had an accident, drooled excessively, or simply spent a lot of time lounging on your carpet, there are several effective ways to get rid of the dog smell from your carpet.

The smell of dog can be anywhere in your home so the first step in removing those bad odours should always be to identify where it's coming from

Identify Where the smell is coming from

The first and most important step in removing the smell of dogs from your carpet and sofa is to identify where it's actually coming from.

On a sofa or couch, this is pretty easy since there aren't too many places to check for. It's usually on the cushions or sides of the sofa where your dog rests. Dogs love to relax on a sofa and they won't waste any time sleeping on it if you allow them to (let's be honest, it's hard to say no to our furry friends.)

Identifying the dog odour on a carpet is a far more difficult task. It could literally be anywhere and everywhere. You can start by cleaning the areas where your dog normally lies.

They usually have a few spots that they will frequently go to, generally, dogs will sit on top of the stairs, by the doors, or in the warmest places of a living room such as by a coal fire if you have one.

Steps For Removing Dog Smell From Carpet & Sofa

cute dog but smelly carpet

Start by vacuuming

The first step to getting rid of dog smell out of your carpet is to vacuum the area thoroughly.

This will help remove any loose fur, dirt, and debris that can trap the odour. Use a high-quality vacuum cleaner with a powerful suction to ensure that you pick up as much dirt and fur as possible.

Use baking soda

Baking soda is an excellent odour neutralizer and can be used to absorb unpleasant smells from your carpet.

Sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda over the affected area, making sure to cover it completely.

Let it sit for at least an hour or overnight, then vacuum it up. Baking soda is safe for pets, so you don't have to worry about any harmful chemicals.

Try a vinegar solution

Vinegar is another natural odour neutralizer that can be used to eliminate dog smell out of your carpet.

Mix equal parts of water and white vinegar in a spray bottle and spray it onto the affected area. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes, then blot it up with a clean towel. Repeat the process until the smell is completely gone.

This step is only recommended for isolated sections of your carpet and not large areas. Vinegar in itself can have a strong smell which will need removing in it's own way.

Use enzymatic cleaners

If the odour is particularly stubborn, you may need to use an enzymatic cleaner. These cleaners are specifically designed to break down the proteins in urine and other organic matter, which can cause odours.

Follow the instructions on the label carefully and make sure to test the cleaner on a small, inconspicuous area of the carpet first to avoid any damage.

Steam Cleaning Is Great For Bad Smells

If you have a steam cleaner then using it in conjunction with your enzyme cleaner is an excellent solution for bad smells such as bad dog smell.

We highly recommend that anyone who doesn't have a steam cleaner but owns both carpets and dogs, go out and buy one ASAP! They don't need to be expensive and this machine will make a world of difference to your carpet and upholstery.

To use a steam cleaner for bad dog smells, follow these steps:

  1. Vacuum the area removing loose dirt and debris

  2. Spray your enzyme pet odour cleaner onto the areas that smell

  3. Let it dwell for 10-15 minutes and agitate with a carpet brush during this time

  4. Grab your steam cleaner and slowly go over the affected area with multiple passes

  5. Use large towels to remove excess moisture from the carpet

  6. Do a smell test, if the smell persists, repeat the process

  7. Use some fans to help dry the area once it's been cleaned

The Wet & Dry Method

wet and dry vacuum for carpets

Another effective method for homeowners that have a wet and dry vacuum cleaner to hand is to use that with some pet odour elimination enzyme cleaner spray.

These machines are the perfect complement to anyone with carpets because you can use it on wet carpets without breaking the machine.

The ability to do this is absolutely essential for stain removal and carpet cleaning because to clean the carpet effectively, you will first need to moisten it either with hot water or with chemicals.

How to remove bad smells with a wet and dry vacuum:

  1. Start by vacuuming the carpets, you can use your wet and dry for this

  2. With a pump sprayer, apply the pet odour eliminator to the entire carpet you are looking to treat

  3. Use a soft clean brush to agitate the cleaner into the fibres of your carpet

  4. Let sit for 10 minutes and then vacuum the area completely

  5. Go over it until the smell has completely gone

Will the smell come back?

As long as you have a dog that is allowed onto your carpets and sofas, the smell will always come back.

That's the reality of having dogs...They're loving, playful, excitable and smelly. Carpets absorb that bodily odour that comes from dogs unfortunately and there isn't an awful lot that can be done about it.

You can help manage this by training your pet to stay off certain areas within your home and then make a note of where they do go so that you can maintain them. That way you won't be clueless as to where the smell is actually coming from.

Professional carpet cleaners can offer carpet protections which can assist with the cleaning process, making it easier.

You will still need to clean your carpet regularly but fabric protection can make a huge difference when protecting your carpets from bad smells.

When to hire a professional

If you've tried everything and the odour still persists, it may be time to call in the professionals.

A professional carpet cleaning service has the equipment and expertise to remove even the most stubborn smells.

You will also want to consider hiring a carpet cleaning service if the smell is literally everywhere! Can you imagine throwing baking soda all around your home and leaving it there overnight, only to find you missed a few spots the next day and the smell persists?

They can also provide additional tips on how to prevent dog smells from returning in the future.


In conclusion, getting rid of the dog smell on your carpet can be a challenging task, but it's not impossible.

By following these tips, you can eliminate the odour and keep your carpet smelling fresh and clean.

Remember, the key is to act quickly and address the issue as soon as possible to prevent it from becoming a permanent problem.

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