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How to Get Dog Smell Out of a Couch

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Dogs are a man’s best friend, and one place that is great to enjoy that relationship is curled up on the couch. But, let’s face it, as close as you two are, you definitely don’t want to smell your dog every time you want to relax.

Couches come in a variety of materials, so there isn’t just one way to remove dog smell that works with everything. We put together this little guide to give you some quick tips on removing dog smell from couches. We hope you find it useful.

How to Get Dog Smell Out of Couch

dog laying on top of old leather couch

Your first step to removing odor is prevention. That doesn’t mean not allowing your dog onto the couch. You can invest a little money in throw pillows or a blanket, things that you can throw into the washing machine. Eventually some smell will set into these things and the dog will recognize where to lay down.

Pet hair is a significant source of smell, so if your couch winds up smelling like your dog your first step is to vacuum. Make sure to get the entire thing, including the corners and nooks where pet hair can accumulate unseen. That includes underneath the couch.

If your couch still smells like dog, generously coat the area with baking soda and allow it to sit overnight. The baking soda will absorb the odor, just like it does in your refrigerator. Vacuum it up the next morning.

If that doesn’t work, spend a little money on an enzyme cleaner. These are designed to break down the things that create the smell. Make sure that the one you buy is appropriate for your couch’s materials.

How to Get Dog Smell Out of Leather Couch

dog laying on top of leather couch with two owners

The large pores in leather mean that it is easy for a couch made from it to pick up odors from people and pets who sit on them. Leather also requires a little more care when cleaning than a normal fabric couch.

A good first step is to put the couch in a well-ventilated spot for a few days. You can help this by giving your couch a good physical cleaning. Brush the cushions gently and vacuum the under cushions and in corners. After a few days, the odor will probably go away on its own.

If it doesn’t, make sure to check the couch’s care tag. It will tell you what’s safe to use on that particular leather. If you can use a water-based solution, a little white vinegar with water and spray the couch down. The vinegar neutralizes the things that cause odor.

Let it sit for a few minutes before wiping up the fluid with a clean cloth. Apply an appropriate leather care product to prevent the leather from cracking.

If you can’t use vinegar, you can still dust the entire couch with baking soda. Baking soda works on odors the same way that vinegar does. Let it sit overnight and then vacuum in the morning.

How to Clean a Couch That Smells Like Dog

Sometimes it’s difficult to tell just where a dog odor is coming from. That probably means you need to clean the entire couch.

If you need to do that, start by vacuuming the entire couch and paying special attention to the folds and corners where fabric meet. Don’t forget to vacuum underneath the couch, because the smell could be accumulated hair and dander under it.

Check the couch’s care tag. This will tell you what kind of cleaner you can use on it. A W means a water-based cleaner, an S means a solvent-based cleaner, an S/W means either and an X means neither. For those, you have to stick to vacuuming or lightly brushing the fabric.


If you can use a cleaner, spray down the entire couch, working in section. Let it sit for several hours for the cleaner to work, and make sure your pets don’t get onto the couch. Use a furniture brush on a carpet cleaner to remove the cleaner and odor-causing materials.

Home Remedies to Remove Dog Smell Out of Couch

diy couch cleaners being put together

You don’t need to shell out a lot of money for something to remove pet odor from your couch. Common household products can do the job just as well.

Of those, baking soda and white vinegar are the most common. You probably have a box of baking soda in your refrigerator, in fact. It naturally absorbs odors. These work because pet odors are caused by things that are acidic in nature. Baking soda and vinegar are both alkaline, so they neutralize those odor-causing agents.

A particularly effective home remedy is to mix baking soda with hydrogen peroxide, with a drop or two of dish detergent. Hydrogen peroxide breaks down crystalizing compounds in urine and counteracts highly acidic bodily fluids like vomit and diarrhea.

If you use throw pillows or a blanket to keep pet odor off your couch, toss in white vinegar to deodorize them during the washing process. If your couch has a W on the care tag, you can also spray it directly onto where you think the odor is coming from.

A final homemade remedy is to mix the peels of citrus fruits like lemon, oranges, and grapefruits with some brown sugar and water to make a cleaning solution that functions like a store-bought enzyme cleaner. The catch is that once you have it all mixed together, you’ll need to let it brew for three months.


Removing the smell of dog from your couch isn’t complicated or difficult, especially if you know the right tricks. The right place to start is knowing how to take care of your particular couch. Different kinds of upholstery require different kinds of care.

Once you know that, however, you can probably put together a deodorizing plan based on common household cleaning products. Among the most reliable are white vinegar and baking soda. You can also invest a little money in a specialized cleaner.

We hope you found this guide helpful. If you did, please leave a comment below or share this article on your social media networks. You might help someone save a lot of time, money, and grief.

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