You know how it goes: The minute you turn your back, your pet decides that your new carpet is the perfect place to relieve himself. You clean and clean, but you can't get rid of that smell. What can you do?
Well, for starters, you need to find which areas are soiled and then re-train your pet to avoid eliminating in those areas. And to do that, you'll have to clean those areas, and clean them well. Here are the steps you'll need to take:
To be successful, you need to follow all these steps. If you fail to completely clean the area, your re-training efforts will be useless. As long as your pet can smell his personal scent, he'll continue to return to the "accident zone." Even if you can't smell traces of urine, your pet can. Your most important chore is to remove (neutralize) that odor by following these steps:
For "new" stains (those that are still wet):
For stains that have already set:
If the wood on your furniture, walls, baseboard, or floor is discolored, the varnish or paint has reacted to the acid in the urine. You may need to remove and replace the layer of varnish or paint. If you do so, make sure the new product is safe for pets. Employees at your local hardware or home improvement store can help you identify and match your needs with appropriate removers and replacements. Washable enamel paints and some washable wallpapers may respond favorably to enzymatic cleaners. Read the instructions carefully before using these products and test them in an invisible area.
Finally, in conjunction with cleaning, be sure to teach your pet where you want him to eliminate. To do this, make the "accident zone" unattractive and the appropriate "bathroom" area attractive, and follow our tips on Using Aversives to Modify Your Dog's Behavior, Using Aversives to Modify Your Cat's Behavior, Housetraining Your Puppy, and Positive Reinforcement: Training Your Dog or Cat with Treats and Praise. The re-training period may take a week or more. Remember, it took time to build the bad habit, and it will take time to replace that habit with a new, more acceptable behavior. Treat your pet with patience and give him lots of encouragement!