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Pet Odor Removal Service Cost

The average cost of removing pet odor is around $1,400.

In this guide

Causes
Cost factors
Prep-work
Light cleaning
Deep cleaning
Cleaning methods
Labor
Maintenance
Enhancement and improvement costs
Additional considerations and costs

How much does it cost to remove pet odor?

Foul odors in your home aren’t just unpleasant, they can be downright dangerous. The bad smells that pets leave around your home are the result of bacteria buildup in your carpeting, upholstery, flooring, and more. Left unchecked, this bacteria can put your family at risk of contracting a variety of ailments. To make matters worse, foul pet smells can get you evicted from an apartment or lower the resale value of your house by as much as $30,000.

Tackling pet odors in your home isn’t always as simple as shampooing the carpeting or sprinkling some deodorizer on stinky areas. When urine, feces, and pet vomit have permeated the inner fibers of your carpeting, or the subfloor 1 below, it may require a professional to eradicate the odor, and the danger. This can cost anywhere from $500 for a basic cleaning and deodorizing to $1,400 or more for a complete odor remediation.

Causes

If you have had pets in your home for any length of time, you know that they love to roll in things outside that smell. This is often referred to as “scent camouflage.” In other words, odor is a dog’s way of protecting itself from “predators.” The problem is, humans don't appreciate these types of bad smells very much. Luckily, when scent camouflage is the cause of your pet’s foul odor, a good bath may be all that is necessary.

Unfortunately, picking up bad smells while traipsing outdoors isn’t the only cause of smelly pets. Here are a few other causes of pet odors and stains you may want to consider:

  • Natural oils: Like people, some dogs just have a stronger odor than others. This is usually caused by an overproduction of natural oils. Since these oils can turn rancid quickly, a pet who produces more than they should will begin to smell.
  • Allergies: One of the biggest culprits of foul pet odors are seasonal and food allergies. When a dog or cat suffers from allergies, their body automatically begins to excrete more natural oils to help soothe the skin. Root out the allergic reaction and you can keep the smell at bay.
  • Bacterial infection and yeast overload: Odor is produced by bacteria and when an animal has a bacterial or yeast infection, they will smell.
  • Urine: An animal's skin is not the only thing that could be stinking up your house. An incontinent pet may be urinating on the rugs and hardwood, which will eventually seep deep into carpet fibers or the underlayment and subfloor, causing a permanent odor. Felines who continually mark their territory will also cause the kind of damage that makes the entire house smell. Keeping up with urinary accidents is key to keeping pet odor from infiltrating the entire house. If left untreated, professional help may be necessary.

Cost factors

With costs ranging from as little as $100 for odor removal to $800 or more to totally replace affected floors in a single room, you may be wondering how to calculate your own pet odor removal costs. Here are some important factors to consider:

  • The cause of the odor: if that pet smell is coming from new puppy accidents, something as simple as scrubbing the area and deodorizing it may be enough. But, if that foul smell is the result of repeated urination or worse, the cost of remediation could run much higher.
  • The severity of the problem: odor removal can become quite costly when it is due to urine or fecal matter that has penetrated the fibers of the carpet, or actually stained hardwood. Urine that has been allowed to seep beneath the surface of the flooring and actually adhere to the underlayment and subfloor may require the complete removal of the current flooring.
  • The type of cleaning needed: when it comes to removing pet smells from your home, the cost will depend a great deal on the type of cleaning required. For instance, while a standard carpet cleaning may cost $150 per room, cleaning the furniture is going to come with added cost. Standard pieces of furniture (like upholstered chairs or recliners) cost around $50 each, while a large sofa may be $80. These charges will be added to the job.

Prep-work

Once you’ve decided to hire a pro due to a noticeable smell, you won’t really know how bad the problem is until they come in for a comprehensive evaluation. This will likely include an initial walk-through of your home, looking for problem areas and stains, and a UV light inspection. By using a UV light, the inspector can uncover hidden urine that you may not know was there. This is especially useful when the actual cause of the stench is not easily identified.

During this phase of the inspection, the odor remediation specialist will determine the severity of the damage. Will the rugs have to be removed or replaced? How about the floor underlayment–can it be saved? If urine has infiltrated the subfloor, it may be necessary to sand 2 it down or even replace it. This can all increase the cost of the odor removal services.

Once the pet odor inspection is complete, you will be given a final report of the inspector’s findings. This will help give you a better idea of the work required, and cost, to free your home of those horrible pet smells.

Light cleaning

If you catch the problem early enough, a light cleaning may be all that is necessary to rid your rooms of that nasty smell. One of the most effective ways to clean dirt, grime, and urine from your flooring is with a good scrubbing. This, of course, only works if the urine has not penetrated the backing of the carpet or seeped into the floorboards below.

Cleaning small messes from your carpeting and furniture usually takes a few hours and can run several hundred dollars. Assuming that the pet odor in your home is due to periodic dog or cat accidents, then a basic steam cleaning will likely be enough to rid your rooms of the foul odor. This type of carpet cleaning usually runs around $75-$200 per room. Add odor elimination to the cleaning and be prepared to shell out another $30-$40 per hour for the service. Opt for a chemical-free odor elimination and estimate a cost between $500 and $1,100. Of course, a total odor remediation expert is going to cost even more (averaging about $100-$250 per hour), depending on the severity of the problem and area in which you reside.

Deep cleaning

Getting rid of pet odors in a home isn’t always easy. When left untreated for longer periods of time, eradicating the cause of the odor may require more than a simple cleaning . When shampooing your carpeting and furniture (or even an ozone shock treatment) doesn’t work to get rid of the odor, you may want to consider removing the affected carpeting and replacing the flooring as well as replacing any saturated drywall 3, floor studs, and joists.

Ripping out affected carpeting, linoleum 4 and/or hardwood usually costs between $50 and $100 per hour, with an additional $50-$150 per hour charged if the subfloor needs to be sanded 1 down or the concrete slab 5 under the flooring needs to be grinded to rid the area of the smell. Replacing the existing floor may cost $500 to $10,000 per room, depending on the type of flooring being installed and the size of the space. For instance, linoleum can be replaced for as little as $1-$3 per square foot 3; while hardwood can run as much as $10-$20 per square foot.

When cats have saturated a wall with urine markings, it may be necessary to replace portions of the drywall. This will cost between $40-$60 per panel, including materials and labor.

Cleaning methods

There are plenty of ways to clear the air of pet odor. The method you choose will depend on what is causing the problem, how serious it is, the damage that has been done, as well as your own personal preferences.

Steam cleaning

Steam cleaning uses a combination of high pressured hot water and cleaning chemicals to loosen dirt and debris, which is then suctioned back out of the carpet fibers and/or upholstery with a special high-powered machine. While effective, this method does leave the area damp for up to 24 hours, which makes the room unusable while it dries. This type of standard carpet cleaning (including stain removal and deodorizing) can run about $100-$200 per room.

Chemical based dry cleaning

Dry cleaning is another option for removing pet smells from a room. Unlike steam cleaning, which relies on hot water to remove dirt, debris and stains, dry cleaning uses rotating brushes to pull dirt from carpet fibers, in conjunction with dry chemicals (very little water is used) to help eradicate messes. Dry cleaning does not require the drying time of wetter cleaning methods, allowing you to use the room immediately. The cost of dry chemical cleaning ranges from $120 to $150 per room, depending on the company you choose and the size of the space.

Ozone shock treatment

Sometimes, cleaning up after a pet simply is not enough to get rid of foul odors. When the bacteria associated with the smell is too deep for standard carpet cleaning to handle, you may need to consider a more invasive method like ozone shock treatment. This will help to eradicate the bacteria buildup causing the smell in the first place.

Ozone blasting is a cleaning method most often used in commercial buildings to help sterilize areas of toxic bacteria and mold. It has shown good results in removing nasty pet odors in homes when other cleaning methods have failed. The process is relatively simple: ozone shock treatment uses a small ozone-producing generator to create lethal levels of ozone in a sealed room. This high level of ozone kills any living organism within the space (including bacteria), thus leaving the room smelling fresher after the treatment.

Taking only a few hours, ozone shock does require every living thing (including people, pets and plants), to be removed from the home during the treatment, but they may come back once the ozone has dissipated from the rooms. The cost of ozone shock treatment ranges from $300 for less than 1,000 square feet to about $1,100 for 3,000 square feet or more.

Subfloor extraction

When your pet’s urine is limited to a relatively small area, it is possible to use a super-duty subfloor extraction tool to eliminate the odor. This tool is used by professionals to target airflow for maximum absorption of urine. First, the area is treated with an enzymatic cleaner that seeps deep into carpet fibers. Then the extraction tool is placed over the affected area and the moisture is suctioned out using a high-powered extraction tool that pulls all of the urine and moisture from the carpet, padding, and subfloor for a cost of $50 - $200.

It is not always easy to choose the right cleaning method for clearing out pet odors in a home. Here is an overview of the pros and cons of each method discussed to help make your decision easier:

Type of cleaningProsCons

Subfloor Extraction

($50-$200)

Absorbs all moisture

Reaches the padding and the subfloor

Limited to small areas

Steam Cleaning

($100 - $200 per room)

Inexpensive

Efficient

Longer drying time

Dry Cleaning

($120-$150 per room)

Green alternative

No drying time

Less effective

Ozone Shock Treatment

($300-$1,000)

Kills Bacteria

Fast

More expensive

More invasive method

Need to leave house


Labor

No matter what process you choose to rid your home of foul pet odor, it is always best to hire a professional to handle the situation. Professional odor remediation specialists know exactly what to look for and how to handle even the worst situations. They may cost more (averaging $75-$250 an hour), but the problem is usually solved quickly and efficiently, which ultimately saves time and money.

Light cleaning methods like carpet cleaning can usually be done in a few hours with just one or two professionals. More in-depth odor elimination may take longer, depending on how severe the problem is. For instance, if your flooring must be removed, the subfloor sanded and new flooring installed, the entire process can take up to two weeks.

Maintenance

Some of the best ways to keep those nasty smells from infiltrating your entire home is to practice a few maintenance tips like these:

  • Vacuum carpets and furniture daily.
  • Use odor eliminators when necessary. Sprinkling baking soda on affected areas can help since it tends to absorb moisture and odors, which are then vacuumed away.
  • Keep litter boxes cleaned regularly (once or twice per day)
  • Clean pet messes immediately, which helps keep urine from seeping deep into carpet fibers or into the subfloor below.
  • Keep pets away from areas that have been voided on for several days or weeks to keep them from thinking it is an okay place to defecate.
  • Deep clean flooring and furniture at least 3-4 times each year.
  • See your vet if the problem continues. The best way to eradicate pet odor from your home is to fix the problem creating it.
  • Bathe your pet more frequently.
  • Do not allow pets to lay on furniture or bedding.
  • Clean all pet items regularly such as bedding, toys, and accessories.

Enhancement and improvement costs

Carpet treatments against odors and stains

Keep stains at bay by applying a stain resistant treatment to carpet. This costs about $80 per gallon and will cover about 1,000 square feet.

Carpet installation

Sometimes cleaning a carpet is not enough to rid your house of those nasty pet smells. When urine has penetrated the inner fibers and padding 6, it may be necessary to completely remove and replace the damaged flooring. Installation costs usually run between $1,000 and $1,600 for a 140 square foot space.

Carpet repair

When carpet stains will not come up with a good cleaning, you may be forced to bring in an expert who can either match the color or patch the area with new carpeting that matches the old. Both of these fixes require a skilled pro who has been specifically trained in carpet repair. Of course, this type of fix can be costly, averaging about $200 with a cost range between $100 and $400 depending on the type of carpet being fixed and the size of the area.

Interior painting

Odor can stick to the walls if left untreated. One way to freshen the room may be to repaint it. Be prepared to pay about $3 a square foot for a professional paint job, with the average cost running between $2 and $5, depending on the type of paint you are using and the difficulty of the job.

Air duct cleaning

The air ducts in your home have an important job–to keep the temperature inside stable by circulating the air within. Unfortunately, all of this circulating can also move smells from room to room. So that nasty pet smell in the family room will eventually make its way to the bedroom. One way to combat this problem is to have your air ducts professionally cleaned. Clearing these ducts can have a dramatic effect on the quality of your home’s air, and keep those smells away. The cost for this service averages from $300 to $500.

Rug cleaning

Area rugs are a great way to catch unwanted dirt and debris before it makes its way inside the living areas of your home. Unfortunately, they also tend to trap a lot of odor. Keeping these rugs clean may require periodic professional attention. Whether you choose to steam clean, chemically clean, or even soak clean the rug does not matter. The cost is going to run about $160 for an average 8 x 10 foot rug.

Additional considerations and costs

  • Larger animals tend to create bigger problems. That pee stain may not look very big, but pull up the carpeting and you may find a much larger stain underneath.
  • Urine is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, and it’s the bacteria that smells, not necessarily the urine itself! So it makes sense that the more bacteria that grows, the stronger and more foul the odor will become.
  • If your odor problem has become severe, it may make more sense to treat the entire room instead of just the spot where you noticed the problem. This will help eradicate any lingering smells and give the room a fresher feel.
  • When hiring an odor eliminating specialist, look for one who is trained to handle all sorts of odor issues including rodent and human odor offenses. These types of specialists often have more experience dealing with tougher odor problems, and more resources at their disposal.
  • Look for DIY options when possible. Small odor problems can often be dealt with on your own by immediately mopping up messes and sprinkling deodorizers that you can vacuum up later. If you have tried a general cleaning using baking soda and deodorizers to no avail, do not hesitate to bring in an expert.
  • Another option for cleaning your carpeting and furniture is to rent a steam cleaning machine from your local home improvement center and do it yourself. While it may be cheaper (costing about $50 a day for the machine rental plus another $20-$50 for cleaning solution), doing this job yourself takes a lot of time, is messy, and can be hard to handle.
  • Air diffusers can also offer quick relief from animal smells. They work by heating water laced with aromatic essential oils to release the natural smells of the oil into the air. Quality diffusers range in price between $50 and $150. The oils needed to freshen the space cost $10-$25 per vial.

FAQ

  • What removes pet odor?

Begin with a good cleaning of the area. Be sure to dab away any excess moisture when urine is the culprit, and then use a cleaner or sanitizer of your choice. If this fails, you may want to bring in an odor remediation expert to find the root cause and offer his or her assistance.

  • What’s the best pet odor eliminator?

The best odor eliminators can be used on any surface, are free of dangerous chemicals, do not discolor the carpeting, discourages animals from returning to the scene of their crime to pee there again, and works on both fresh and old stains.

  • How do you deodorize a house?

Several options include sprinkling baking soda on all carpeting and furniture and then vacuuming after one hour. You could also simmer several cups of white vinegar on the stove for several hours to absorb smells. However, this might not be enough and you might want to hire a pet odor removal service.

  • How can I make my dog smell neutralizer?

Scrub hard surfaces with a white vinegar solution and sprinkle fabrics with baking soda.

  • How do you get rid of pet odor in carpet?

Sprinkle liberal amounts of baking soda on top of affected areas and let sit for about an hour. Vacuum clean. If this is not enough, consider hiring a professional service.

  • Does replacing carpet remove pet odor?

If the source of the odor has not penetrated the underlayment beneath the carpet, then yes, replacing it should get rid of the smell.

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Remodeling Terms Cheat Sheet

Definitions in laymen's terms, cost considerations, pictures and things you need to know.
See full cheat sheet.
glossary term picture Subfloor 1 Subfloor: The bottom-most layer of a floor, supported by joists, over which finished flooring material is laid
glossary term picture Sanding 2 Sand: Process of removing the top surface of a material, such as wood, using sandpaper and/or a specialized sanding machine (for large surface areas)
glossary term picture Sheetrock 3 Drywall: Type of plasterboard, commonly used to build walls and ceilings, composed of gypsum that is layered between sheets of heavy paper
glossary term picture Linoleum 4 Linoleum: An inexpensive flooring material made from linseed oil, resins, recycled wood flour, cork dust, limestone and mineral pigments, on a canvas or jute backing.
glossary term picture Concrete Pad 5 Concrete slab: A flat area of concrete that can be used for a variety of purposes, such as a patio or a driveway
glossary term picture Padding 6 Padding: A cushion placed under a carpet to absorb impact, thus extending the life of the carpet

Cost to remove pet odor varies greatly by region (and even by zip code). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

picture related to the guide

Labor cost by city and zip code

Compared to national average
Albuquerque, NM
-14%
Athens, GA
-9%
Atlanta, GA
+24%
Austin, TX
+13%
Bronx, NY
+32%
Buffalo, NY
-1%
Charlotte, NC
+6%
Chicago, IL
+40%
Cleveland, OH
+7%
Columbus, OH
+5%
Corpus Christi, TX
+4%
Dayton, OH
-7%
Denver, CO
+1%
Fort Lee, NJ
+26%
Fort Worth, TX
+6%
Fresno, CA
-6%
Grayslake, IL
+36%
Houston, TX
+24%
Jacksonville, FL
-1%
Kansas City, MO
+4%
Knox, PA
-24%
Lacey, WA
-16%
Laredo, TX
-31%
Las Vegas, NV
+7%
Leesburg, GA
-18%
Longmont, CO
-3%
Los Angeles, CA
+11%
Mesa, AZ
-2%
Miami, FL
+1%
Milwaukee, WI
+12%
Minneapolis, MN
+25%
Napa, CA
+15%
Naples, FL
-3%
Nashville, TN
+21%
New York, NY
+77%
Newark, NJ
+27%
Oakland, CA
+36%
Oklahoma City, OK
-12%
Omaha, NE
-10%
Orlando, FL
+2%
Philadelphia, PA
+40%
Phoenix, AZ
0%
Pittsburgh, PA
+9%
Reading, PA
+4%
San Antonio, TX
-4%
San Diego, CA
+11%
San Francisco, CA
+53%
San Jose, CA
+33%
San Mateo, CA
+44%
Scottsdale, AZ
-1%
Labor cost in your zip code
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