Rug cleaning after pet accident

At the end of a somewhat short rope with cat pee. I have an 8’x10’ rug that was peed on by one of our 4 cats. I went to town with the Resolve Pet cleaner, but apparently they could still smell it and peed there again. We pulled the rug outside and shampooed it and let it dry for a month. They peed on it again. I cleaned it again and COATED the area in 3 boxes of baking soda and left that there for 24 hours, then vacuumed it up (huge mess). Another pee.

Around here it costs $400+ to have the rug professionally shampooed. Is it worth doing - will the cats still smell it and find it a great place to pee? The rug cost about $600 4 years ago if I recall? Maybe a bit more?

(Cats have been to vet: one was found to have struvite crystals and she is on gabapentin and prozac and an rx diet… we hope that fixes her up!)

I use a product called My Pet Peed. Works wonderfully with urine, blood, diarrhea, vomit. May take a few applications, and smells horrendous as it works. But I have had 100% success with odors and probably 90% with stains. Can still see some stains with a black light, but not with the naked eye

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I use this version of an enzymatic cleaner and find it works wonderfully for me. Petsmart sells different sizes. Some you use right out of the bottle, others you dilute with water.

The key to success with any of the enzyme-based cleaners is to make sure they take as long as possible to dry. The cleaner needs to be damp/wet to work on the bacteria, so ideally you wet the rug way beyond the margins of the accident, make sure it completely soaks all the way through, and keep it wet for days (even a week or more, if you can). Cover it with damp towels, then with plastic, whatever you can do to delay drying time.


I like Rocco & Roxie

Followed by Angry Orange

I’d take it back outside and scrub the snot out of it, run a ton of water through it, then clean & let it sit in the sun. Imo, what you can do with it outside is much better than what a pro can do with it in your house.

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I’d think so - the quote I got was for dropping it off at a place that shampoos and extracts it in a big machine. But I can’t decide if it’s really going to work - is it a bit like having horse blankets laundered and they come back not waterproof anymore? :thinking:

That’s certainly much more likely to work than someone who just comes to your house and cleans it in place. Do they have a “pet stain” cleaning option?

I’m cheap, so I might try once more myself with whatever you like best in this thread (or all of it, ha) before going to the trouble of sending it away. Rugs are usually pretty tough.

$600 is also just not a lot for a rug. $400 (+?) to clean vs buying something else you know is pee free…tough to make those lines cross.

But it may also just be solidly behavioral at this point, and nothing you do to the rug will change the peeing. I’ve got one like that, with mattresses. It’s just as awful as it sounds, and the only way to prevent is to keep that cat out of the bedroom.

Yeah I think at this stage we clean the rug and keep the door shut. The offender likes to be in the garage at night which helps.

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I’ve had really good luck with ‘Unbelievable Stain Remover’

When we had two cats that were not housebroken, I was even able to get antique horse hair upholstery clean again. I also got sick of them peeing everywhere and eventually locked them out/removed upholstery from certain rooms. With other animals, it has worked great on the usual cat throwing up dinner even after hours of it drying. Also, blood and red wine.
It will melt silk though.

Mountaineer from TOB posted a topic of a similar issue

She got one of those Ruggable washable rugs to replace the one that she could not get the cat to stop peeing on. She thought it was something with the makeup of the rug.


That’s pretty interesting! But we’ve had this rug 4 years and the peeing only started this year. I think is started when we went on vacation and had a house sitter here - perhaps she stressed the cats out? We did try Feliway too.


  1. is there carpet under the rug?
    Yes: Clean the carpet and padding as well.

  2. If wood flooring, see about cleaning that as well. Wood can absorb urine/moisture . So can porous tiles.

  3. Can you flip the carpet over and apply the cleaner. If it is a thicker carpet, the cleaner may not be getting down all the way into the matting in the back.

Can you borrow a black light and use it to see exactly where there might be leftover urine?

If all else fails, you might try spraying some citrus oil as long as it doesn’t stain the carpet. I’ve heard cats hate citrus.

Good luck. Hope this helps.

It’s wood underneath. I cleaned it so much that the wood is discolored and I need to sand and refinish it :woman_facepalming:

And I cleaned both sides of the rug by taking it outside and shampooing it.

I mean, at this stage probably just burn the house down?

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Can you still smell anything? I’m a dog, not a cat person, but by now I’d vote that it’s more behavioral than scent-related. How are they about going in their litterboxes?

Lol well that would be an option :joy:

I like your plan of just keeping that cat away from this spot. Is it a boy cat? IME, boys are more likely to decide something (this is a great spot to pee!) and then never, ever change their minds, no matter what you do or how you clean or how completely you address the root cause of the initial behavior.

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Sometimes just an outdoor cat, particularly an unaltered male, nearby can trigger marking. It might be worth noting or remembering when the peeing occurred, so you could determine a pattern. Good luck, I agree this is most likely behavioral and caused by a stressor.


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Yeah there are three cats that wander through the back yard and upset our indoor cats through the window. Hateful.

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Girl cat.

Just spent two hours getting the 8x11 rug outside and scrubbing both sides. Would have been SO much easier to burn the house down!


I did find a still smelly spot underneath. Scrubbed now. Single-handedly contributing to the CA drought with my 2 hours of hose and scrubbing brush!

They’re good abotu the litter boxes. Even the one who pees outside it also pees in it…

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If you can smell it, they can definitely smell it! But yeah, I’d be tempted just to clean it professionally, put it in a people-only area, and then put down something super-cheap in its place (truthfully, most of my stuff is cheap)!

That cracked me up bc this is literally my same thought too sometimes.

My advice is to ditch that rug now. I get how offensive it to think about tossing a $600 rug, but that $600 rung currently reeks. Pro cleaning will cost upwards of 400 bucks. Dinking around with it yourself trying to clean it will cost you many many hours of hard labor for a questionable result. Because seriously how many jokes can a $600 rug take? The stuff that folks have recommended here and whatever else you might do yourself in attempt to clean it could easily ruin it, even without cat pee insult. So it all might be in total vain. Rug may still be stinking or ruined AND the cat might pee on it again the next day. Then back to square one…

Toss the $600 rug now. Lock the kitties out of that room. Replace rug with something cheap that you can live with. Eventually let kitties back in and see what happens. Or don’t, ever. Then replace with your spendy dream rug without fear.