How to Keep Your House from Smelling like Dog: Top Tips for a Fresh Home

Our furry canine friends are often considered beloved members of the family, but they can sometimes leave our homes smelling less than fresh. While we love having our dogs indoors, their odors can make it difficult to maintain a clean and inviting living space. This article will provide tips and tricks to keep your house smelling good and free from dog odors.

Proper dog care is the first and most important step in eliminating unwanted odors. Regular grooming, bathing, and brushing can significantly reduce the amount of hair, dander, and dirt that your dog brings into your home. Additionally, maintaining a clean living environment by frequently washing their bedding, vacuuming floors, and using pet-safe cleaning products on furniture and carpets will significantly contribute to a fresher house atmosphere.

Implementing various odor-removing products and techniques can also help in keeping your home smelling pleasant. Things like air purifiers, pet-safe candles, and natural deodorizers can improve the overall air quality and prevent dog-related odors from lingering. In the following sections, we will discuss these methods in detail and provide additional helpful tips for maintaining a fresh-smelling home while living with dogs.

Grooming Your Dog Regularly

Appropriate grooming is a vital part of preventing smells in your home, and it contributes to a healthy and happy dog. It is essential to establish a regular grooming routine for your dog.

Brushing and Bathing

Brushing your dog will help remove loose hair and keep their coat in good condition, which minimizes odor. Most dogs should be brushed at least once a week, while some breeds may require more frequent brushing.

Bathing your dog is also important in controlling odor. Ensure you use a suitable dog shampoo at the right intervals, as over-washing can cause skin problems. The frequency of baths depends on the breed and level of activity but usually ranges between once a month to once every three months.

Cleaning Dog Ears

Regular ear cleaning helps eliminate bad odors caused by ear infections or wax buildup. Follow these steps to clean your dog’s ears:

  1. Choose an appropriate dog ear cleaning solution.
  2. Soak a cotton ball with the solution.
  3. Gently wipe the inside of the ear, avoiding going too deep.
  4. Repeat the process if necessary until the cotton ball comes out clean.
  5. Be sure to praise your dog and offer treats during the process.

It is essential to check your dog’s ears during regular grooming sessions for signs of infection or excessive dirt.

Maintaining Dental Hygiene

Keeping your dog’s teeth clean is another important aspect of grooming that can help reduce bad smells. Establish a routine for maintaining dental hygiene by following these steps:

  • Brush your dog’s teeth at least a few times a week using a dog toothpaste and soft-bristled toothbrush.
  • Use dental chews and toys designed to help clean your dog’s teeth and freshen their breath.
  • Consider adding dental supplements to your dog’s food or water as recommended by your veterinarian.

By following these steps, you can effectively reduce odors in your home by keeping your dog clean and well-groomed.

Cleaning Your Home

Vacuuming and Mopping

Regular vacuuming and mopping are essential for keeping your home free of pet odors. Vacuum floors, carpets, and rugs at least once a week to remove pet hair and dander. When mopping, use a pet-friendly floor cleaner to neutralize any lingering smells. Pay special attention to areas where your dog spends the most time.

Cleaning Furniture and Bedding

It’s important to clean your furniture and dog bedding regularly. Use the following guidelines:

  • Wash dog beds and blankets once a week in a gentle, pet-friendly detergent.
  • Use a vacuum cleaner with a pet hair attachment to clean sofas, chairs, and other upholstered furniture.
  • For stubborn pet hair, use a lint roller or a rubber glove to remove it from furniture surfaces.

Air Purifiers and Dehumidifiers

Using air purifiers and dehumidifiers in your home can help reduce pet odors. Air purifiers trap pet dander, allergens, and odors, improving overall air quality. Dehumidifiers help control moisture levels, which can contribute to unpleasant smells. Consider investing in them, especially if you have allergies or live in a humid environment.

Establishing Dog-Free Zones

One effective strategy for reducing dog odor in your home is to designate specific areas as dog-free zones. This practice not only helps to keep pet odors at bay but also maintains cleanliness and provides you and your family with pet-free spaces for various activities.

Dog-free zones could include bedrooms, the kitchen, or specific living areas. By limiting your dog’s access to these spaces, you help to confine shedding, dander, and odors to designated areas that can be more easily cleaned and managed.

When setting up dog-free zones, ensure that they are clearly marked using physical barriers such as baby gates or closed doors. Additionally, training your dog to understand and respect these boundaries is crucial for the success of this strategy.

Here are some tips for establishing dog-free zones in your home:

  • Determine the areas you want to designate as dog-free based on factors such as family allergy concerns, cleanliness, and personal preferences.
  • Use barriers such as baby gates or closed doors to physically restrict access to these zones.
  • Train your dog to respect the boundaries of the zones through positive reinforcement and redirection to appropriate areas when necessary.
  • Regularly clean and deodorize the designated zones to maintain a fresh, dog-free space.

Odor Absorbing Products

Baking Soda and Charcoal

Baking soda is a natural odor absorber and can be used effectively in the fight against dog odors. To use, simply sprinkle baking soda on carpets and upholstered furniture, let it sit for 15-20 minutes, and then vacuum it up.

Charcoal, specifically activated charcoal, is another excellent option for keeping your house from smelling like a dog. Activated charcoal has a unique ability to adsorb smells and can be placed in small bags or containers around your home. Replace the charcoal every few months for optimal results.

Air Fresheners and Essential Oils

Using air fresheners and essential oils can provide temporary relief from dog-related odors. Be cautious in selecting an air freshener, as some contain chemicals that may be harmful to your pets. Opt for natural alternatives like essential oils, which can be mixed with water in a spray bottle or used in a diffuser.

When selecting essential oils, choose pet-friendly options like lavender, chamomile, or lemongrass. These oils not only help to neutralize odors but may also provide calming benefits for your dog. Remember to consult with your veterinarian before using essential oils around your pets.

Addressing Accidents and Messes


Acting fast is crucial when there’s an accident or mess. Use a high-quality paper towel or a clean cloth to immediately blot out the urine or other liquid on the flooring. Press firmly, ensuring you remove as much of the mess as possible.

For solid accidents, use a gentle and non-abrasive scooper or glove-covered hand to lift the waste. Dispose of it appropriately and sanitize the area after.

The last step of cleaning the mess is washing the area with a pet-friendly cleaner. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to prevent any damage to your surfaces or fabrics.


After cleaning the mess, it’s essential to deodorize the area. Use a pet-friendly deodorizing spray or a natural solution, such as a mix of water and white vinegar, to neutralize odors. For carpets and upholstery, consider using a baking soda solution – simply sprinkle some baking soda on the affected area and let it sit for 15-30 minutes before vacuuming it up.

Proper ventilation is also critical to keep your home smelling fresh. Open windows and doors regularly to allow fresh air to circulate in the house. If needed, use an air purifier to further improve the indoor air quality.

For a long-lasting solution, you might consider investing in an enzymatic cleaner that targets pet odors. These cleaners can effectively break down urine and feces molecules that cause unpleasant smells, making your home odor-free.

Maintaining a Regular Schedule

Following a consistent routine is crucial for keeping your home fresh and free of dog odors. By sticking to a schedule, you can ensure that necessary tasks are completed regularly, preventing any buildup of smells.

Here are some key steps to include in your daily and weekly schedule:

  • Daily: Air out your home by opening windows and doors, weather permitting.
  • Daily: Vacuum your floors, especially in rooms your dog frequents.
  • Weekly: Launder your pet’s bedding, blankets, and toys.
  • Weekly: Clean and deodorize floors, carpets, and upholstery with appropriate cleaners.
  • As needed: Bathe your dog and groom them regularly to reduce shedding and odor.

Using a calendar to keep track of your tasks can make it easier to manage your time effectively. Remember to also schedule regular visits to your dog’s groomer and any necessary pet maintenance appointments.

By maintaining a regular schedule, you can play a vital role in reducing dog-related odors in your house and maintaining a pleasant living environment.

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