When man’s best friend has a little accident, fast action is going to be your new best buddy.
The secret of how to get dog poop out of carpet is to get a bandana on around your nose and mouth (to stifle the smell), put on your rubber gloves and get down to business as quickly as you possibly can.
Even after fast action, there’s never going to be a substitute for a little professional attention. If you don’t move quickly, you’ll almost certainly need to call someone in to get dog diarrhoea stains out of a carpet.
But if you have managed to get there in time, here’s what you need to do:
Step 1: Determine what kind of carpet you have
The methods you can safely use to deal with dog poop on carpet will depend on what kind you have on your floors.
- Wool (do not use this hot water technique on wool fibres)
You can use hot water to deal with doggy stains on all kinds of carpet – except wool.
For wool carpets, you’ll need to use cold water – as well as a special technique outlined at the bottom of the page.
Step 2: Gather your equipment
In addition to the aforementioned “safety equipment” – that’s a bandana so the smell doesn’t make you gag and a pair of gloves because you clearly need a pair of gloves for this job – you should also gather:
- A strong piece of cardboard or plastic dustpan (you can clean it afterwards)
- White paper towels
- (Optionally) A sealable plastic bag – one of your doggy poop bags might do it
- An oxygen-based bleach – most laundry products fit the bill
- Laundry detergent
- A bucket (to mix the detergent with some water in)
- A brush with soft bristles
- Some soft clean white cloths
- A small measure of white vinegar (this is good for a whole lot of household cleaning jobs)
- Some baking soda
- A vacuum cleaner
Step 3: Remove the solid parts
If all of your dog mess is solid, it’s going to be easier. But whether it’s runny like diarrhoea or less runny faeces, you still need to start off by picking up whatever solid bits you can.
Use successive paper towels and your cardboard or plastic dustpan to extract as much as you can.
- Do try to minimise the amount you move the mess around.
- Do not blot or smush the stained area while you do this as you can force it deeper into your carpet.
Once you’ve done this, you can put the dirty towels in the sealable bag. Or you might choose the slightly more eco-friendly method of flushing everything down the toilet.
Step 4: Pre-treat the stain
This is a trick borrowed from professional carpet cleaners. Pre-treat the stain with a little of your oxygen-based fabric cleaner. Let it soak in for a while.
Step 5: Mix a cleaning liquid and soak the stain
Next up, mix up some laundry detergent with some hot water. You’ll probably want a strength somewhere in the region of two splashes of detergent to a gallon bucket of water.
Then use it to gently soak the stain. Let it sit for 15 minutes to do its work.
Step 6: Get scrubbing
Now that your cleaning mixture had done its work, its time for you to do yours.
Take out your soft-bristled brush, dip it in your bucket of cleaning solution and scrub the stain until it goes away.
- Do work from the outside towards in.
- Do not scrub outwards as this will spread the stain further.
Step 7: Rinse it clean
Once the stain appears to be gone, you won’t need your cleaning mixture any more. Empty your bucket of dirty water and give it a serious cleanse. Now fill it again with clean water. If you have spring or distilled water, even better.
Use the new water to rinse all the soapy mixture from your carpet.
Step 8: Dry it
Now, using more of your paper towels followed by your soft cloth, gently blot away all of the liquid until your carpet is as dry as you can make it.
Step 9: Deal with the odours
Mix equal parts white vinegar and spring or distilled water (for preference) and add to the stain. Once it’s had a few minutes to work, you can use more paper towels or another (clean!) soft cloth to dab it dry again.
Step 10: The secret extra step
For additional odour removal and stain removal power, take some baking soda and sprinkle it over the affected area of your carpet. Let it sit for 24 hours then vacuum it off.
Some people suggest using a specially purchased odour neutraliser, but these are:
- Generally more expensive than baking soda
- Potentially very dangerous for dogs if eaten
A special note about woollen carpets
If you have woollen carpet, much of the above will cause further damage to them instead of helping! Instead:
Remove the solid bits as outlined above.
- Make a two parts white vinegar to one part distilled water mixture. Spray this onto the affected area.
- Use your white cloths or paper towels to dab it dry. DO NOT scrub.
- Buy a spot remover that clearly states it is “Safe for wool” and use it.
- Place a final clean white cloth down on the affected area and stand on it, or otherwise apply pressure to soak up the final bit of liquid.
- Use the magic power of baking powder as described above.
Remember that carpet cleaning professionals exist
Your carpet is an expensive thing to need to replace. If at any time you feel uncomfortable taking the actions described above, remember that one call to the professionals is probably all you need to solve the problem!