Keep the dog but not the funk: 5 steps to get rid of dog smell

We. Love. Dogs. Period. End of story. Forever and ever!

Their soft fur, their precious kisses, their tail wags, their musty smell. Well, maybe not that last one.
It doesn’t matter if you prefer tiny little chihuahuas or massive St. Bernards, dog smells are not fun in any household. The good news? You don’t have to choose between a house that smells good and your canine companion. Follow these steps to get rid of dog smell but keep lovin’ on that dog!

How to get rid of dog smell

When you’ve amassed amazing amounts of “I love dogs” T-shirts but find you don’t love dog smell, start with these steps to get rid of unwanted animal aromas.

Step one: Buster gets a bath

In the game of odor elimination, start with your most valuable player: the dog.

1. Give the dog a bath before you clean so you aren’t fighting a losing battle. A stinky dog lying all over your furniture seconds after you clean it is like brushing your teeth while eating. Animal Scents® Shampoo is formulated with your pup in mind, so you know it is safe and toxin free.

2. In a pinch? Make Rufus smell better—at least temporarily—with a scent like Animal Scents® T-Away™. Put a drop or two in your palm (depending on the size of your dog), rub your hands together, and give him some pets and pats of love to rub the oil through his fur.

Real talk: If your dog is too stinky, it is worth a trip to the vet. Dogs get their distinct smell from an oil that their skin produces, but if Fido’s funk goes beyond what’s normal, the vet may be able to help. As always, check with a vet knowledgeable in essential oils before using them on your dog.

Step two: Sparky’s stuff needs a wash

Pupper’s bed, blankets, and crate get stinky the fastest. Add washing and scrubbing these items to your Monday through Sunday cleaning checklist to prevent smells from getting overwhelming.

1. Wash Bandit’s blankets. Dog bedding may be the smelliest part of the house because she is constantly rolling around in it. Thieves® Laundry Soap is plant based and leaves no chemical or synthetic residue, so it’s safe for pets.

2. Vacuum dog beds. If your mutt’s mattress doesn’t come with a removable, washable covering, vacuum up hair and dander on a weekly basis. Use an attachment to get into the seams and corners. But really, if removal is possible, throw the bed’s cover in the wash with the blankets.

3. Wipe down the crate. Wipe down the crate inside and out with a damp rag and this DIY cleaner packed with extra deodorizing power, thanks to white vinegar.

Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle. Spray liberally inside and outside the crate and wipe with a clean cloth.

Dog accessories and bottles of scents on the ground.

Is Thieves Household Cleaner safe for dogs?

Thieves Household Cleaner can do just about everything, but is it safe for furry friends? Yes! When used as directed, it is A-Okay to use around cute and cuddly canines!

4. Food and water bowls. Give Chief clean dishes! Wash and dry all bowls and food stands once a week following manufacturer directions. Remember to wipe down their placemat while you’re at it.

5. Remember the little things. Collars and leashes can harbor stink too. Fill a sink with warm water and a small amount of gentle soap like Animal Scents® Shampoo or Thieves® Household Cleaner. Let the collar and leash soak for 10 minutes, then gently rub it together to remove any stains (avoid using a scrub brush, as it may damage the collar). Rinse and lay flat to dry. Finish with a drop of Animal Scents® ParaGize™ on the collar for an ongoing fresh scent.

Step three: Marley’s messes get tidied up

From drooly jowls to dragging the garbage throughout the house, these tail-wagging sweethearts can be good at making messes.

1. Accidents happen. Use this DIY pet stain and odor remover when they do.

2. Vacuum on the reg. We’re not just talking about carpets, although you should vacuum those twice per week depending on how much your dog sheds. Vacuum the couch, chairs, and anywhere you allow your dog to sit and lay. We know—it’s a hassle. But would the dog lovers of the world have it any other way?

3. Sweep well and mop with a strong solution. Sweep every nook and cranny often to pick up the dirt, hair, and dander your pet tracks through the house; then use a pet-safe cleaner (Thieves to the rescue again!) to mop the floors. For tile and laminate floors, mix up this recipe in your mop bucket:

For wood floors, omit the dish soap and add 2 tablespoons of grapeseed oil.

4. Wipe up messes as they occur. Use the same spray you used in the crate to wipe up drool or muddy footprints.

5. Don’t forget the car. Can you get rid of dog smell in the car? Yes! Use a seat protector and wash it according to manufacturer instructions. Wipe down hard surfaces like the dash and door panels.

Step four: Spike’s smell gets evicted

Covering odors doesn’t cut it—you need to absorb them first. It’s similar to diffusing; why cover smells with toxic air fresheners when you can totally eliminate them with essential oils?

1. Scented baking soda. Infuse 1 cup of baking soda with 10–20 drops of your favorite dog-friendly scent—we like Valor®, Stress Away™, or Lavender. Sprinkle the baking soda on carpets, couches, and chairs and let sit overnight, then vacuum up baking soda in the morning. The baking soda will absorb odors, and the oils will leave a pleasant “Our house is always clean!” scent behind.

2. DIY charcoal satchels. Place a few odor-absorbing charcoal briquettes or lava rocks in an old sock and place it out of Bandit’s reach. Replace the charcoal every few months to ensure its odor eliminating effectiveness lasts. For adding great aromas once you take the nasty ones away, add a drop of essential oil to that sock each week.

Step five: Frankie adores fresh scents

When your house no longer smells like your favorite cuddle buddy, it’s time to infuse your space with inviting scents.

1. Choosy dog moms choose essential oils wisely. Remember to use essential oils that are as good for your little buddy as their go-to treats and toys. Check out our guides on using oils around all your pets, whether they have fur, gills, scales, or feathers.

2. Amazing aromas in your abode. Are you officially ready for an incredible-smelling habitat? Essential oils can be a natural and effective way to get out the funk!

Scents on the floor with food and toy

Happy to use your favorite products on your favorite pups?


Accidents happen: DIY pet stain and odor remover

Even good boys and girls make mistakes! When your four-legged friend misses the piddle-pad or the litter box, it’s no fun for anyone. Don’t dismay! With this DIY pet stain remover, you and your furry pals will be cuddling odor-free in no time.

Pet Stain and Odor Remover Recipe



If your doggo buddy very recently left a puddle on the living room carpet, use these instructions for removing fresh stains:

1. Add the essential oils to the salt and mix well.
2. In a spray bottle, combine the salt mixture, apple cider vinegar, and water. Mix thoroughly until salt has dissolved.
3. Blot the “accident” to remove excess moisture.
4. Shake the bottle, then spray the stained area generously until wet.
5. Let sit for 10–15 minutes.
6. Using an old towel or rag, soak up the mixture by blotting until moisture is removed. Do not apply heat to aid in the drying process, as it can cause unwanted odors and stains to set permanently.

When you find an older, smellier, set-in stain, use the instructions above to make the DIY pet odor eliminator and then:

1. Spray the area generously until wet.
2. Sprinkle baking soda over the stain and leave for 24 hours or until dry. The baking soda will absorb the stain during this time.
Once dry, scoop up as much baking soda as possible and discard, then vacuum thoroughly to remove any remaining powder.


Furry and bright: 5 holiday survival tips for your four-legged friends

While everyone adores the sparkling decor, scrumptious desserts, and enchanting traditions that the holidays bring, we can all agree that too much of a good thing can be overwhelming. When you’re feeling the stress of the season, your four-legged companions likely are too.

Between holiday hosting and late-night wrapping, don’t forget the most lovable—and furry—members of your family! With all that you have on your mind while you prep for the celebrations, check “remember the pets” off your list and try these five festive tips!

Festive puppy looking at Christmas lights

The most wonder-fur time of the year

The holidays often mean extra house guests, unplanned sledding excursions, and long fireside get-togethers. Throwing off your pet’s schedule can cause rifts in their behavior.

Try to maintain your normal schedule as much as possible by getting up at the same time and taking your little darlings outside for some fresh air. Putting them in bed at their usual hour with some soothing music will keep them well rested, even if you’re still up socializing. Normalcy is the key to a happy howl-iday!

Dachshund through the snow

A well-exercised pet is a well-behaved pet! Nothing makes tiny fur balls quite as sleepy and snuggly as a playdate in the crisp winter air, and family and friends are sure to appreciate the fuzzy nap companion. Bring your pets along for the ride on some of your outdoor winter outings!

Forget the figgy pudding

We get it. We love party food too. If it smells good to you, it smells even better to your pet! The list of foods that are harmful to your pet can be intimidating, so instead of taking the risk, try instituting a general rule with guests that pets don’t get table scraps or handouts. Getting your entire party on board will help you keep your peace of mind.

Placing foods out of reach and in a high place will help keep your pets’ tummies (and you) calm.

No place like home for the holidays

It’s no secret that our furry friends are often the most popular party guests. When the pets are done raising the roof, giving them a safe place to sleep away from the noise and distractions. If your pet is kennel trained, put their kennel in another room where you can dim the lights to help them relax and dream of sugar plums while you entertain.Puppy slipping on bed

I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claws

Giving your pet love and attention during the holidays will prevent them from feeling isolated during all the commotion. Dogs especially are pack animals that love to feel seen, appreciated, and “part of the group.” Try working with them on refining commands such as“sit,” “lie down,” and “stay” before guests arrive and praise them as they practice! Not only will this help you bond with your pup, but it will also encourage them to be on their best behavior when it matters most.