Pets and hardwood floors arent always the best match. Between dog claw scratches and pet stains, your hardwood can take a beating. Acting fast to clean up poo, vomit and urine stains on hardwood floors is the key to getting rid of the stains and the smells. But sometimes you might need to do a little more to remove dark areas or odors that soak into the wood.
If you have a young pet, accidents may be frequent until you make it through pet potty training. Older pets sometimes have accidents due to incontinence. But pets of any age can have an occasional accident or get sick and vomit on your hardwood floors. Whether youre dealing with poop, urine or vomit, you can usually avoid staining by cleaning it up right away. The finishes used on hardwood floors can hold off the pet mess for a short time.
But if you dont clean up dog pee on hardwood floors right away, it can soak down into the actual wood. This can happen if you dont notice the mess or if you have carpet over the hardwood and urine soaks through to the wood below. Urine is usually the worst as far as staining since its a liquid, but poop or vomit can cause damage and staining, too. The ammonia in urine can be particularly powerful. If the urine soaks into the wood, it can cause dark staining. The smell also sticks with the wood. You may be able to get rid of the stains if theyre fairly new and not very deep. But sometimes the pet mess can require sanding or even replacement of the wood.
How Does Dog Urine Affect Hardwood Floors?
Hardwood floors are exceptionally durable, but they’re also prone to damage when exposed to water, harsh cleaning chemicals and some of the naturally occurring chemicals in dog urine. The damage from dog pee depends on whether you have sealed floors — finished floors with a protected coat on top — or unsealed floors, meaning no finished coat.
Dog urine is typically acidic, which is why it can break down the finish of a hardwood floor’s surface; especially if the urine is allowed to dry up. It might leave a stain on the surface, make it lose its shine and cause discoloration. If you have an unsealed floor, dog urine can penetrate deeper into the wood and leave a persistent and unpleasant odor. If the odor isnt completely eliminated and the area becomes a regular piddle spot, the constant exposure to urine may ultimately cause the wood to warp.
Keep in mind that many cleaning products that are labeled “safe to use on hardwood floors” are not always 100% effective in removing dog urine stains and odor, and they may still cause some discoloration on your wood’s finish.
Step 1: Soak Up the Urine on Your Floor
The first step is to immediately soak up the puddle by placing a thick wad of paper towels or cleaning towels on the mess. Keep sopping up the urine with fresh towels until a towel comes up dry. Finish wiping off the area with a cloth dampened with water and then dry it off with a fresh towel.
The Steps to Cleaning Dog Pee on Hardwood Floors
You have to act fast. It’s essential to clean dog pee before it dries out and soaks deep into the wood. And you have to make sure that you clean up all the spots on the floor where the urine has splashed. Dried-up dog urine may stain the floor and leave that pungent, characteristic odor. At that point, eliminating the stain and odor may require methods prone to cause some damage to your floor (more on that later).
Does dog pee stain hardwood floors?
Can you refinish hardwood floors with urine stains?
How do you get dried urine out of wood?
How do you remove urine stains from floor?
- Cover with an absorbent pad soaked in rubbing alcohol.
- Let it remain in place for 5 minutes, then wipe the area with a cloth dampened with ammonia. (Do not use ammonia on linoleum or vinyl floor tile.)
- Rinse well with water and wipe dry with a soft cloth.