We love our dogs, but sometimes they can be stinky! Even though their stinkiness does not make us love our pooches any less, the odor is still off-putting, and it would be nice not to have to deal with it.
What Makes Dogs Smelly?
There are a few areas on a dog’s body that produce the doggy smell you can detect around households with an inside dog.
Sweat: Even though dogs do not use sweat as their primary cooling method, they still sweat from sweat glands present in their paw pads. This is naturally an easy way for the sweat to be spread all around the home, as the dog roams about. Anything your dog stands on (or puts her paws on) will have a doggy smell (especially if your dog is always sweaty).
Ear Wax: The waxy ears of a dog are the ideal breeding ground for bacteria, and a side effect of their lifecycle is a big part of your dog’s smell.
Scent Marking: Even if your dog has been housebroken, and does not mark her territory within your house, she will still produce odors which will be the biggest contributor to that doggy smell in your house.
Removing Dog Odor
There are two main types of surfaces which you will have to contend with: soft surfaces like carpets, and hard surfaces like floors.
Soft Surfaces: You can either wash affected soft surfaces, or remove the odor if washing is not an option. If your couch (or any other soft surface that) smells, and you have removable covers, then washing the covers is the ideal way to get the odor out of the fabric, and leave the couch smelling clean. Unfortunately, not every couch has removable covers, and there might be other soft surfaces or materials which are not washable; in such instances, you can either use a commercial product which is designed to remove odors from soft materials, or use a box of baking soda (which has great odor removal properties) to get rid of the odor. If you are using a commercial product, then you should follow the product directions; however, if you decide to use baking soda, then you will need to sprinkle baking soda on the effected surface, and leave it for a few hours (ideally overnight). The odor attraction properties of the baking soda will remove the smell from the material, and leave your soft surfaces smelling baking soda fresh!
Hard Surfaces: Floors will be comprise the great majority of hard surfaces to which your dog has access (unless he is spending some of his time on table-tops and counters). Start by vacuuming all affected areas, and follow by using a deodorizing commercial product specifically designed to remove pet odor. The goal is to not only remove the odor, but eliminate any bacteria that may be the source of the smell. You can also formulate a homemade mixture which can then be used as the hard surface cleaner. You can create the mixture by adding 1 tea-spoon of vinegar and baking soda to 16 oz of water, and use that mixture to clean the floors. If you’d like to not only remove the odor, but leave behind a pleasant scent, add a big of scented dishwashing soap or a few drops of essential oil of your choice to the mixture.
Keep the House Smelling Nice
Once you have removed the odor from your floors and soft surfaces, it is time to continue to be vigilant to keep the odors way. The best way to do so is to vacuum on a regular basis (at least once per week), both the floors and soft surfaces, and follow up with a washing and deodorizing regiment which prevents the doggy smell from building up.