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Did your pet have an accident? Whether it’s an old mess or a new one, here’s how to get dog poop out of your carpet.
When you have a puppy or even an older dog, accidents can happen. The good news is that cleaning up pet messes is easier than you might think, especially if you tackle the stinky situation as soon as possible. Whatever the stain is, here are all the steps you must follow to remove dog poop from carpet.
Guy Peters, owner of Mop Stars Cleaning Service, says pet waste, especially dog poop, should be cleaned up immediately. There is no doubt that the smell will permeate your whole house almost instantly. Furthermore, feces are full of bacteria and parasites that are dangerous to pets and people, such as E. coli, salmonella, and parasitic worms. The longer it sits, the more it seeps into your carpet’s fibers and padding, causing long-term damage that can only be repaired by replacing the carpet.
As with how to get dog pee out of carpet, how to get rid of dog smell, and how to get rid of pet odor, removing dog poop from carpet without leaving permanent stains or odors takes some practice. Additionally, you’ll need the right cleaning supplies and appliances, such as pet stain removers and carpet cleaners.
How to clean fresh dog poop out of carpet
Following these steps will help you remove fresh dog poop from carpet:
1. Remove the pet from the area
Don’t punish or scold your pet if you catch them pooping in the act, Peters says. “They may be sick, young, or old, and unable to control what has just happened,” he adds. Make sure they are removed from the area so they do not step on the mess.
2. Use a plastic bag to get rid of the mess
Remove as much material as you can using a plastic bag or dog poop bag. If you have diarrhea, use paper towels to absorb as much as possible, but don’t push too hard on the carpet, since that may drive the mess deeper into the fibers.
3. Spray the area with an enzymatic cleaner
Spray and lightly dampen the area with an enzymatic cleaner after you’ve removed the bulk of the mess. (Read more below about why enzymatic cleaners are best.)
4. Wipe away more of the mess
Wipe away more of the mess with paper towels or a rag after spraying.
Spray the area again, this time completely covering the stain and an inch around it. Allow it to sit for 15 to 20 minutes. The enzymes need time to do their work, which is why Peters recommends letting it sit.
6. Blot the area again
If necessary, repeat the last two steps after blotting the area again.
7. Sprinkle baking soda on the stain
Use a soft-bristle brush to gently scrub the area after you sprinkle baking soda over it. Baking soda helps remove odors, discolorations, and stains, but it is not an enzymatic cleaner. Allow the baking soda to sit for 30 to 60 minutes or until completely dry before proceeding.
To remove the baking soda, use a vacuum. Check out our guide to the best vacuums for pet hair if you’re in the market for a new one.
Bonus: Use a steam carpet cleaner
“As long as you are using an appropriate enzymatic product in the cleaner, you can use a steam carpet cleaner instead of or in addition to any of the above steps.” says Peters. In addition to using enzyme cleaner and baking soda, I go back in one more time with my carpet cleaner to make sure I’ve really cleaned the area.”
How to get old poop stains out of carpet
It isn’t too difficult to clean dog poop that has been sitting on your carpet for a while. Depending on the situation, it may even take less time. Do not be alarmed if you find an old pile of poop that has dried into your carpet! Peters offers advice. The following steps will help you clean up dried messes more easily than fresh ones:
1. Use a plastic bag to pick up the mess
Pick up as much poop as you can with a plastic bag, just like you would with a new accident. Use your fingers to grip and pull apart an old mess (with a bag over them, of course).
2. Loosen old excrement
As much dried poop as possible should be loosened by brushing or scraping it with a putty knife. The more you can remove while dry, the less unpleasant the cleaning process will be. Adding liquid to the soiled area releases smells, and the material can again stain and seep into your carpet.”
3. Spray the area with an enzymatic cleaner
Apply your enzymatic cleaner thoroughly, and let it sit for 30 to 45 minutes. Peters recommends keeping the area saturated throughout this period, as it won’t be effective if it dries out. Reapply as needed.
4. Scrub the area
Scrub the area gently with a soft-bristle brush. It is important not to rub too hard, as this will force more mess into your carpet fibers.
Using a paper towel, blot the area, repeating steps two and three as necessary.
6. Sprinkle baking soda on the area
After thoroughly cleaning with the enzymatic cleaner, sprinkle baking soda over the area and use a soft-bristle brush to gently scrub it. You should let it sit for 30 to 60 minutes or until it is completely dry.
Make sure the baking soda is vacuumed up.
8. Repeat if needed
The whole process can be repeated if necessary. In some cases, Peters says, it takes more than one treatment to fully eliminate old messes.
Supplies you’ll need
In order to properly clean dog poop out of carpet, you’ll need the right tools. According to Peters, you should always have these pet-mess essentials in your home:
- Bags made from plastic
- Use paper towels or rags
- Carpet cleaner with enzymes
- Cleaning brush with soft bristles
- Soda made from baking
Use an enzymatic cleaner for stains that produce an odor, like pet urine, vomit, or poop. In these cleaners, enzymes similar to those found in yogurt help eat microscopic particles that make up stains, explains Jay Kellis, chemist for Bissell’s Consumables Development department. The probiotics begin working as soon as the spray is released from the bottle. As long as the material is kept moist, they’ll continue to multiply and remove it. In order to ensure that the stain is [completely] removed, we recommend keeping a moist towel on the stain and giving it plenty of time to work.”
Peters recommends enzymatic cleaners with protease enzymes, such as Nature’s Miracle Advanced Dog Enzymatic Stain and Odor Eliminator, which break down proteins. Are there any other great options? Bissell Professional Pet Stain and Odor Removing Formula, Angry Orange Odor Eliminator, and Folex Carpet Spot Cleaner.
In order to prevent future accidents, you should also use an enzymatic cleaner. That’s right, you read it correctly. Using these cleaners removes the bacteria that cause odors and may cause your pet to defecate in the same spot. “Pets use their sense of smell to communicate in many ways, including where they go to the bathroom,” says Peters. It’s possible that even the most potty-trained pet gets confused by the smell of previous soiling and thinks that’s an appropriate place to go.
As a pet parent, you should also have an excellent carpet cleaner on hand, especially one that can treat small spots. Among our favorites are the Bissell Little Green Machine, Bissell Pet Stain Eraser, and Rug Doctor Pet. Here are some more tips on how to clean your carpet like a pro, whether you’re dealing with another kind of pet stain or simply want to keep your carpet looking great.