First don’t panic! Breathe and grab a spray bottle of apple cider vinegar, a small botte of it to pour around the edge of the spot to encircle the urine, some paper towels to blot the mess up and a scrub brush. A small black light is important to find and treat any spots. Having a spot bot or carpet shampooer is handy for this, and agitating the fiber is important! I highly recommend rubber liners behind rugs to protect wood floors and never leave a wet rug on wood floors as it will cause damage!
- Pour a small line of vinegar around any spot that there has been an accident. The idea is to encircle the spot so the urine can’t escape into the carpet fibers. Usually 2 inches outside the accident is enough to capture any urine that you aren’t seeing on top of the carpet traveling underneath. Pour a ring and be ready for the next step.
- Grab your towels or shampooer and start in the middle of the stain either blotting or sucking up the mess, work outward in a circular pattern, so you don’t spread it!
- Once it is blotted/ sucked up thoroughly then grab your spray bottle and soak the spot in vinegar again and a small brush to scrub in a bit into the fibers. Let this sit a couple minutes then blot/suck up any remaining and repeat.
- Lift the carpet and make sure to scrub the back well. Rinse with more vinegar and repeat the scrubbing. If you need to lay the carpet down on the floor again make sure to lay a towel down under the spot to absorb any fluids. Let the last time set for at least 10-15 minutes for the vinegar to do it’s job before doing a water rinse. If you can remove carpet long enough to dry from the floor as odors can get trapped between the carpet and floor.
So now that all of that is done. You have a clean carpet, now what? You don’t want it to happen again, and you don’t want your pup feeling trapped or shut off from your family. Grab some baby gates, a long leash 15 foot works great, some treats and breathe. You are going to make it so your pup starts to see each spot as a sleeping area and make sure that no repeats happen! If it does, don’t yell, don’t make a big deal just scoop your pup head out the door and have a potty party clicking and marking the moment that they pee outside and celebrating them going. Same area in the yard every time and making sure to give stinky high value treats as close to the click as you can with several treats in a row to make going outside worth it. Don’t wait to treat until you get back inside or you are too late and just rewarding coming inside. Which we see a ton with dogs that rush inside after they potty and still have accidents.
Keep your pup either tethered to your side, or within the confines of a baby gated safe room or exercise pen to help them understand we use the bathroom outside. Small dogs seem to have a harder time with this concept than larger dogs as their sleeping and living area needs are much smaller than a large dog. Slowly add safe rooms and make each area a comfy sleep zone so it doesn’t happen. Check for spots invisible to the naked eye with a black light and clean those heavily to ensure no odors remain. Good luck and happy potty partying!