Is your new little pup not yet house trained? Or, maybe your old pal is having trouble making it outside? We know all too well the struggle of cleaning pet urine. But it’s even more frustrating when it happens on the carpet.
Don’t worry, we’re here to help you tackle the urine stains and odors. We put together the ultimate list of the best carpet cleaners for pet urine. These, along with some added information, should help you come to a urine-cleaning solution.
Choosing the Best Carpet Cleaner for Pet Urine
When choosing a product to clean urine from carpet, consider the following criteria:
1. Carpet Material
Carpets aren’t all alike, and this is important to remember. Common types of carpet fibers include nylon, polypropylene, polyester and wool. Do you know which one yours is?
Keep in Mind
Before purchasing a product, make sure you read the description carefully to see whether or not it’s safe for your type of carpet fiber. If you’re unsure of the material of your carpet, you can do a spot test in an inconspicuous area. Make sure you allow the spot test to work as directed and dry thoroughly before determining if it’s safe.
2. Reaction Time
The reaction time of a carpet cleaner starts when the product is first applied and finishes when it’s either rinsed off or dried.
So if your carpet is in a high-traffic area, you have to consider how long it needs to sit for. It can be challenging to use a product that requires you to keep the area clear for long. This is especially tricky in busy homes with children and pets running around.
Most cleaners require around five minutes of reaction time. Others will work straight away and can be removed within minutes. However, these might also need a few tries to get the stain out completely.
When choosing a product, you, of course, want one that works effectively. However, some cleaners require that you use a significant amount of product and effort to get the stain out.
This can be time-consuming and a waste of money since you’re going to run out of product quickly.
Be careful when dealing with urine on carpets. Using too much product can soak the stain into the carpet pad. The odor will then be even more difficult to remove.
Most large carpets have a pad to protect the floor beneath. However, the pad acts similar to a sponge. It soaks up any fluid in contact with it — including urine.
To avoid a potentially stinky-situation, we suggest that you follow the instructions and only use what’s needed. Then repeat the treatment if the stain isn’t completely extracted.
Pets will sometimes find other places — besides the carpet — to go to the bathroom. So having a product that can be used on multiple surfaces may save you money and time.
Because carpet cleaners generally don’t contain harsh chemicals, they’re safe to use on other surfaces. However, you should always read the directions to make sure it will be safe.
There are several types of carpet cleaners you can choose from. All have different application methods and require various cleaning methods:
- Foam: These are ready to use and often come with a built-in applicator to help remove the stain. They do need some manual effort since you have to work it into the carpet. Some also require a longer reaction time.
- Powder: This variation is simple to use and only requires that you sprinkle it on the stain, without scrubbing. After the instructed waiting time, you can vacuum the area. These aren’t as effective on tough stains but can remove odors efficiently.
- Spray: Spray cleaners are the most commonly used. They enable you to target smaller spots and are usually suitable for upholstery. Sprays penetrate carpet fibers quickly, but can be difficult to use in large areas.
- Shampoo: This type of cleaning is only necessary when you need to clean a large area. Most shampoos require a particular machine or equipment but are highly effective.
For urine stains, we prefer to use either foam or sprays. These are easy to use and highly effective at tackling urine odors and stains.
Quick Guide to Ingredients
Carpet cleaners come in many different formulas, but it’s crucial to choose the right one. Active ingredients include enzymes and are oxy-based. These are also gentle on carpets and easy to use.
Cleaners containing enzymes are the most effective at removing organic matters such as urine and feces. This is because enzymes are chemicals that work to help good bacteria feed on other (harmful) bacteria until there’s nothing left. They then die (2).
When using this type of cleaner, you won’t have to rinse or mop the area afterward. Simply vacuum the area once it’s thoroughly dried. It’s also safe to use on various surfaces such as hard floors, rugs and upholstery.
Another reason why we like to use enzymes for pet urine is that they’re non-toxic. You can easily use them in a busy family home without compromising your family’s health.
Enzymatic cleaners are available as concentrates and pre-diluted. Pre-diluted cleaners are usually called enzyme-based, so this is what you should be looking for.
Oxygen cleaners are activated by oxygen. When the formula comes in contact with the stain and surrounding air, it creates bubbles. These bubbles lift and dissolve molecules in the stain so you can easily wipe it away.
Some oxygen-based cleaners also contain hydrogen peroxide. This is highly effective against old stains but can lighten the surface if not used properly.
Other oxygen-based cleaners consist of powders such as sodium percarbonate or perborate. These cleaners are highly effective disinfectants (4). They are commonly used instead of chemical disinfectants. Plus, they’re excellent at removing odors.
Oxygen-based cleaners are very common in foaming formulas, but you can also find them as sprays and powders.
The Best Carpet Cleaners for Pet Urine of 2020
We took all of the above points into consideration when searching for our top choices. And with some guidance from our expert team, we’ve created our list of the best cleaners.
1. Smiling Paws Pets Stain and Odor Eliminator
If you have a pet urine emergency, this spray could quickly come in handy. It’s convenient as all you have to do is point and spray the stain. There’s no need to dilute with water.
Also, you can use this spray no matter where in the house your pet might’ve had an accident. It’s safe on hardwood floors, litter boxes, kennels, upholstery, and more. You can even use it on concrete and artificial grass.
The formula uses an advanced bio-enzyme blend that gets rid of the stain and odor quickly and efficiently. It will consume ammonia and other biological matters until they’re entirely gone.
You can safely use it around children and pets, thanks to the non-toxic formula. Smiling Paws Pets believes in its product so much that the brand offers you your money back if you’re not happy.
- Fast-acting enzymes.
- Easy to use.
- The container is only 32 ounces, which might not last long.
|Removes||Urine, pet messes, odors|
|Application Method||Not specified|
|Safe On||Carpets, rugs, upholstery, tiles, concrete, hardwood|
|Manufacturer||Smiling Paws Pets|
2. Shout Carpet Urine Destroyer
Tough stains call for robust products, and this definitely lives up to its name.
Urine Destroyer works quickly at eliminating the foul odors that often present when the stain has settled. The oxygen-based formula digs into the fibers of the carpet to remove all traces of the stain.
We love that this product is easy to use — start by locating the spot and saturating it with the product. Leave it to sit for three to five minutes and then blot the spot gently; there’s no need to scrub.
This product is also fast-acting and doesn’t require any rinsing. After blotting out the stain, let it dry naturally, then vacuum.
A common problem with pets is that they tend to come back to the same spot. Shout has thought this through and made the formula stronger. This way, it eliminates the odor and prevents remarking.
- Short reaction time.
- Prevents remarking.
- No rinsing needed.
- Small quantity.
|Application Method||Leave in|
|Safe On||Floor, fabric|
3. Carbona Two-in-One Oxy Cleaner
This foaming formula works fast as it comes in contact with a stain. You also get a two-in-one brush and sponge to scrub the spot for optimal results.
The applicator consists of a soft sponge that effectively cleans the surface of the carpet. The stiff brush around the edges works its way deep inside the carpet fibers to remove any trace of the stain.
Pets won’t only go for a plush carpet. Some might feel more comfortable on the rug in the kitchen. But there’s no need to worry since you can use this product on multiple surfaces. This includes nylon, colorfast wool, upholstery and rugs.
Pet urine can become extremely pungent when left, and it can quickly stink up the whole house. Thankfully, this oxygen-based foam neutralizes odors permanently to leave your home fresh and clean.
Finally, this formula is safe to use around pets and kids. So if you have a busy home with kids and pets running around, you won’t have to wait until everyone is asleep.
- Neutralizes odors.
- Built-in sponge.
- Easy to use.
- Customers report that the applicator is difficult to clean.
|Removes||Urine, pet mess|
4. Rejuvenate Click N Clean
If you’re looking for a cleaner that will effectively remove multiple types of stains and odor, this is it. This Rejuvenate spray is easy to use and acts fast as it eliminates stains.
Deep stains sometimes make a comeback even if it looked clean when you left it. Dealing with this can be very frustrating.
Included with your purchase is a scrubber to help you tackle the toughest stains. If you have a Rejuvenate spray mop, you can attach it too. If not, the scrubber is easy to use by hand and works efficiently on surfaces like carpet and upholstery.
- Prevents stains from reappearing.
- Easy to use.
- Use on soft surfaces.
- Includes a scrubber.
- Strong scent.
|Removes||Urine, feces, vomit, wine, coffee|
|Safe On||Fabric, carpet, upholstery|
5. Genesis 950 Concentrate
Some urine stains can be tough to deal with without the right product. This calls for a potent concentrate that can handle the challenge.
Pet urine can develop a sour stench that can be impossible to get off of a carpet. But, this formula works effectively at removing bad odors and the traces a stain leaves.
Your pet also won’t be returning to the area since all odor traces are removed from the carpet. The formula is safe to use on multiple types of surfaces inside and outside your house. It can even be used in your car.
There are no toxic ingredients that will put your children or pets in danger, so you can use it at any time. Genesis provides easy instructions on how to dilute the product to suit the severity of the stain.
Since it’s a concentrate, you will have to dilute it before use. But, because you get 2.5 gallons, the product will last a very long time.
- Easy instructions.
- Low in volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
- Strong smell.
|Removes||Urine, feces, vomit, grease, limescale|
|Application Method||Require rinsing|
|Safe On||Fabric, carpet, upholstery, kitchen, bathroom|
6. Hoover Deep Clean Max
If you’re unsure which type of carpet you have in your home, this cleaner is a good option. It’s safe for multiple common types of carpets such as nylon, acrylic and olefin. However, if you’re still unsure, do a test in a small spot.
The formula is enzyme-based and is, therefore, highly effective at removing stains and odors. You can use it to remove messes such as urine, vomit and feces. It works great in the car, on upholstery and around the house.
Even after you’ve finished cleaning, the enzymes will keep going to remove deeply embedded traces of the stain.
It’s a concentrated product, so you do have to dilute it — Hoover provides thorough instructions on how to do so. Plus, you get 120 ounces so it should last you through multiple accidents as you dilute when needed.
- Works on multiple types of stains.
- Safe to use around the house and car.
- Enzyme-based concentrate.
- Large bottle.
- Continues to work even after cleaning.
- Not as effective at deodorizing.
|Removes||Pet messes, coffee, dirt, dust, grease, hair products, odor, oil|
|Safe On||Carpet, upholstery, car upholstery|
7. Rocco & Roxie Professional Strength Cleaner
For stubborn urine stains, you need a reliable product. This professional strength formula acts fast as it comes in contact with stains.
It’s enzyme-activated and will eliminate spots from yellow urine, feces, vomit and other organic matter. The enzymes will also continue to work until all organic matter is gone. This means it will keep going even after you’ve finished cleaning.
If you have pets and kids, it can be challenging to find a suitable product. This formula is safe to use around children and pets. It’s also safe on various surfaces and fabrics, without leaving a residue.
- Deep cleans.
- Highly effective against ammonia.
- Safe around children and pets.
- Safe to use on multiple types of carpet.
- Can cause slight bleaching if not used correctly.
|Removes||Urine, feces, vomit|
|Application Method||Blot and air dry|
|Safe On||Carpet, upholstery, car upholstery, hardwood, laminate, laundry|
|Manufacturer||Rocco & Roxie Supply Co.|
8. OdoBan Three-In-One Carpet Cleaner
This three-in-one formula works as a pre-treatment for a sprayer or cleaning machine, a spot remover and an extraction cleaner.
It’s a concentrate; you’ll have to dilute it. A little goes a long way, so this popular product will last you through multiple pet cleanups. OdoBan claims it makes up to 64 gallons if appropriately used.
The formula is detergent-free and safe to use on carpets and upholstery. It’s also effective at removing dirt, soil and urine.
You can get the cleaning done quickly by diluting the product in a spray bottle and treating accidents as they happen. The formula requires no rinsing and dries fast so you won’t need to close the area off.
- Recognized by the EPA.
- Safe for wool.
- Not as effective at eliminating odors.
9. Rug Doctor Pet Deep Cleaner
When you need to do a deep clean on a large area, this carpet shampoo by Rug Doctor is a suitable option.
The formula uses professional strength pro-enzymes that work fast and for a long time. The tiny enzymes will actually keep working for up to 24 hours after you’ve finished. This creates a very thoroughly clean, which is also something customers noticed, saying it cleans better than professional-grade options.
You can breathe easy too — your pets won’t be returning to the popular spots on the carpet anytime soon. The enzymes will eliminate any trace of the odor so your pet can’t find it. This is an essential feature when dealing with pets.
One drawback is that you will need a carpet cleaning machine to use this product. However, these can be rented at your local hardware store.
- Fast-acting and effective.
- SpotBlock protects your carpet from dirt and stains.
- Excellent for large areas.
- Enzymes will work for up to 24 hours.
- Not good for spot cleaning.
Detailed Comparison Chart
|Product||Best||Quantity||Removes||Application Method||Safe On||Manufacturer|
|Smiling Paws Pets Stain Eliminator||Overall||32 oz||Urine, pet messes, odors||Not specified||Carpets, rugs, upholstery, tiles, concrete, hardwood||Smiling Paws Pets|
|Shout Carpet Urine Destroyer||Oxy-Based||32 oz||Urine, odor||Leave in||Floor, fabric||Shout|
|Carbona 2-in-1 Cleaner||Foaming||22 oz||Urine, pet mess||Rinse||Fabric||Carbona|
|Rejuvenate Click N Clean||For Multiple Stains||32 oz||Urine, feces, vomit, wine, coffee||Leave-in||Fabric, carpet, upholstery||Rejuvenate|
|Genesis 950 Concentrate||Concentrate||2.5 gal.||Urine, feces, vomit, grease, limescale||Require rinsing||Fabric, carpet, upholstery, kitchen, bathroom||Genesis 950|
|Hoover Deep Clean Max||For Multiple Types of Carpets||120 oz||Pet messes, coffee, dirt, dust, grease, hair products, odor, oil||Leave-in||Carpet, upholstery, car upholstery||Hoover|
|Rocco & Roxie Professional||Professional Strength||32 oz||Urine, feces, vomit||Blot and air dry||Carpet, upholstery, car upholstery, hardwood, laminate, laundry||Rocco & Roxie Supply Co.|
|OdoBan 3-In-1 Carpet Cleaner||Versatility||1 gallon||Urine, grease, vomit, blood, dirt, coffee, food||Diluted||Carpet, upholstery||OdoBan|
|Rug Doctor Pet Deep Cleaner||Carpet Shampoo||48 oz||Urine, wine, vomit, blood, dirt, coffee, food, paint, make-up||Carpet cleaning machine||Carpet||Rug Doctor|
We know all too well how tricky getting pet urine out of the carpet is. Urine will quickly develop a foul odor, and it can ruin a carpet if left. So, you need to act fast once you notice the urine.
When finding the best carpet cleaners for pet urine, consider your carpets’ fibers. Our preference is to also go for non-toxic products such as enzyme- or oxygen-based ones.
Are you often dealing with accidents on the carpet? Share your tips on how to best deal with it in the section below!