Unilever logo
Cleanipedia AU logo

How to Get Rid of Pet Odours

Want to get rid of lingering smells left by pets? Find out how to remove cat and dog smell in the home, plus more tips and tricks here!



Pets are such fun to have around, but keeping a furry friend means you also need to take extra care to maintain the cleanliness of your home. Whether you want to know how to get rid of cat urine smells, or just freshen up animal-friendly areas, we’ve put together this guide to removing pet odours so you can be sure to get the job done quickly and with the minimum amount of fuss.

Keep a room deodoriser or scented candle at hand for removing or masking pet smells when unexpected guests drop by your home. Wash machine-washable fabrics – like cushion covers – with a fragranced detergent like Surf Tropical Lily.

Identify the Main Sources of Pet Smell in Your Home

If you want to learn how to get rid of pet smells, you need to consider where they come from in the first place, and know exactly where to clean to keep your home smelling fresh.

Pet odours can come from:

  • Indoor litter trays

  • Dirty cages or tanks

  • Soft furnishings and bedding where pets have a spent a long time sitting or lying down

  • Hair shedding and moulting

  • Sweating and scent marking

  • Dog urine smell from accidents while puppy training

To remove pet odours from your home you need to:

  • Empty litter trays, cages, and tanks regularly. Disinfect where possible to keep smelly germs at bay.

  • Clean soft furnishings and bedding regularly (see below).

  • Frequently vacuum soft furnishings, carpets and floors to pick up hair.

  • If there’s been an accident, remove cat urine smell or dog urine smell by washing tiled, wooden, or lino floors with a disinfectant. This can also get rid of sweat and scent marking secretions.

  • Take your pet for regular check-ups at the vet to catch any underlying health issues.

How to Eliminate Pet Odours from Soft Furnishings

It’s tricky to know how to get pet smell out of soft furnishings, since cats and dogs love to spend lots of time sitting or lying down on comfy chairs and sofas, but if you use the straightforward method below at least once a week, you’ll soon have it under control. (Remember to check the care label of your furnishings before applying any treatment.)

  1. First, you need to give the chair or sofa a thorough vacuum to get rid of any hair or skin cells that have adhered to the surface of the fabric.

  2. Next, sprinkle your pet’s favourite area with baking soda and leave it to absorb any unsavoury smells over night. (This is also great for eliminating dog or cat urine smell after accidents.)

  3. Vacuum up the baking soda the next day and then examine the area for any obvious stains that could be causing the smell.

  4. Spot treat marks with a moist clean cloth and liquid detergent. Blot instead of rub the stain to lift all the dirt off.

  5. Remove any residual smells with a commercial deodoriser specifically designed for soft furnishings.

How to Get Rid of Pet Odour from Bedding & Clothes

The simplest way to get bedding and clothes smelling nice and fresh is to put them in the washing machine with a high quality detergent like Surf. Wherever possible, wash duvets, pillow covers, and blankets in your washing machine according to the care label and the instructions on the side of the detergent bottle. You should take any large specialist items like rugs to your local dry cleaning professional.

Now you know how to remove dog smell in the house (and a whole host of other animal odours), you can concentrate on enjoying the company of your furry friends!

removing pet odours

* Identify the main smelly areas in your home.

  • Clean smelly bedding with a fresh-smelling detergent.

  • Use a commercial deodoriser to eliminate any cat or dog smell in the house.