If you have a dog, you know how their smells can tend to linger, especially on furniture they love to lay on, like sofas. While you may have become desensitized to the doggy odor that has built up in your sofa over time, it likely is very noticeable to visitors. Getting rid of that embedded dog smell in your sofa should be a priority. Here are some of the best tips for eliminating dog odors from your sofa for good.


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Regular Cleaning is Key

The most effective way to keep dog smells at bay is by staying on top of regularly cleaning your sofa. Don’t allow odors a chance to build up over time. Focus on high traffic areas your dog frequents like cushions, armrests and backs.

Vacuum Weekly

Use the brush or upholstery attachment to vacuum the entire sofa once a week. This lifts dirt, hair and other debris that can hold odors from deep in fabrics. Get into crevices and seams for thorough cleaning.

Spot Clean Messes ASAP

Immediately blot up wet messes like urine, drool and mud using an absorbent cloth. Avoid rubbing, which can push stains further into the fabric. For tough spots, use an enzyme cleaner specifically formulated to eliminate pet odors.

Deep Clean Twice Yearly

Professionally deep clean or steam clean your sofa every 6 months to sanitize and revitalize the fabrics. Be sure they use pet odor eliminating cleaners.

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Addressing an Existing Dog Odor Problem

If dog smells have already built up in your sofa fabrics, you’ll need to thoroughly clean and deodorize to remove lingering odors. Here is a simple process to follow:

Vacuum Vigorously

Start by thoroughly vacuuming the entire sofa using the upholstery attachment. Focus on areas your dog frequents and go over them several times to remove surface odors and hair.

Sprinkle Baking Soda

Liberally sprinkle baking soda over all upholstered surfaces of your sofa. The baking soda will help absorb foul odors trapped in the fabrics. Let sit for a minimum of 15 minutes, or up to 24 hours for severe odors.

Steam Clean

Rent a steam cleaner or use a handheld garment steamer to penetrate and sanitize the fabrics. The heat helps release stuck-on odors. Use a pet odor eliminator cleaning solution in the steamer.

Mist with Vinegar

In a spray bottle, mix 1 part white vinegar with 1 part water. Lightly mist vinegar solution over all fabric surfaces and let dry completely. The vinegar neutralizes odors naturally.

Air Out

If possible, move your sofa outside or to a well ventilated area and allow it to air out for several hours to facilitate odor removal. Direct sunlight also helps deodorize.

Repeat as Needed

For persistent smells, you may need to repeat this cleaning process 2-3 times to fully rid your sofa of that embedded dog scent. But be diligent, and you’ll soon have a fresh smelling sofa again.

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Tips for Preventing Dog Odors in Your Sofa

Once you’ve successfully deodorized your sofa, you’ll want to be proactive to minimize odors coming back. Here are some top tips:

  • Use sofa covers or throws where your dog lounges to protect the upholstery below, and wash frequently.
  • Mist fabrics with lemon water – the citrus helps neutralize odors between deeper cleanings.
  • Sprinkle baking soda before vacuuming to absorb moist dog smells.
  • Limit access by closing doors or placing barricades to keep your dog from spending time on your sofa.
  • Scold unwanted behavior like territorial marking and excessive drooling on furniture.
  • Clean dog beds often to minimize transfer of odors to your sofa.
  • Keep your dog’s coat clean through regular brushing and bathing.

With some diligence, you can successfully get rid of that embedded dog smell from your sofa and keep it away long-term. Be sure to stay on top of regular vacuuming, spot cleaning messes quickly, and periodic deep cleaning. Also take preventative steps to limit your dog’s opportunity to create odors in your sofa. Your home will smell fresh and clean, without annoying dog scents bothering you or your guests.


By Vitoria

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