How to Remove Dog Smell From a Couch

You can't evict your beloved pet, but you can get rid of pet odors that linger in your sofa. Regular cleaning can help remove the doggy debris that creates those smells. Using gentle solutions and being consistent with cleaning can help you get the dog smell out of a couch and make your home an inviting place for pets and humans alike.

Beagle sleeps on cozy sofa
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How to Remove Dog Smell From a Couch

Remove Anything Removable

Sofas often have pillows, cushions, throw blankets and covers that you can remove. Pulling apart your couch as much as possible makes it easier to clean up the smell and freshen the sofa. You'll have an easier time getting down into the sofa to really deep clean it. Separate those removable items into washable and nonwashable items so everything gets cleaned in the best way possible.

Wash Removable Covers

Head to the washing machine with any removable sofa parts that are washable, such as blankets and removable cushion covers. Some throw pillows also have removable covers that can go in the wash. Always consult the labels to ensure the covers are safe to wash regularly in your washing machine. You can add 1/2 cup of vinegar to the washing machine for extra help in removing the pet odor.

Wait to dry the covers until you've eliminated all of the pet odor. The high heat in the dryer can set the smells into the fabric even more, making it more challenging to remove them. Do a sniff test to see how clean the sofa covers smell and repeat the wash cycle if necessary to eliminate more of the odor.

Vacuum to Get Dog Smell Out of the Couch

Getting rid of all the debris your dog leaves behind can help you get the dog smell out of a couch, and your vacuum cleaner is a good way to do that. If you don't have removable cushions on your sofa, you can vacuum all of the surfaces well, including deep into the crevices along the edges and between the cushions.

Even if you do have removable cushions, it's a good idea to vacuum any nonremovable parts and get into the crevices. Vacuuming is something simple that you can do on a regular basis to get the dog smell out of a couch and keep odors under control.

Sprinkle on Baking Soda

Baking soda is good at absorbing odors, so it can come in useful for pet odors in your couch. Sprinkle the baking soda onto the fabric of the sofa and leave it overnight. By giving the baking soda time to sit, you allow it to soak up a lot more of the odor. After you let it sit, use your vacuum cleaner to suck up all of the baking soda.

Use an Upholstery Cleaner

If your sofa needs a deeper clean to get rid of the stench, you can rent an upholstery cleaner or a carpet cleaner with an upholstery attachment. It's a good idea to use the cleaner last after you've removed as much smell as possible, so you don't get a wet dog smell. You may want to invest in a small, handheld upholstery cleaner for future odor removal.

Prevent Future Odors

Since fur, dander, oils and substances on your dog's fur can cause the odor, eliminating those things can cut down on future doggy scents. Bathe and groom your dog regularly to keep the fur smelling good. Brushing your dog outside can help cut down on the amount that ends up on your sofa. You can also prevent smelly things from getting onto the couch by wiping your dog's paws after being outside.

Using a slip cover or other removable covers on your sofa makes cleaning easier. You can toss those covers into the laundry as part of your regular cleaning routine to freshen them. A high-quality air purifier can remove general pet odors in the room.


Shelley Frost

Shelley Frost combines her love of DIY and writing in her freelance career. She has first-hand experience with tiling, painting, refinishing hardwood floors, installing lighting, roofing and many other home improvement projects. She keeps her DIY skills fresh with regular projects around the house and extensive writing work on the topic.