Out, Damned Spot!


If you’ve got a cat, sooner or later you’re going to have the same problem as Lady Macbeth — a difficult-to-treat stain. Either your pet will have urinated outside the box or vomited on the carpet.

Proposed solutions for removing the stain abound: two cups of white distilled vinegar mixed with two cups of lukewarm water and four tablespoons of baking soda, all mixed together and squirted out of a spray bottle; white vinegar alone; a cup of baking soda mixed with a half cup of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide and a teaspoon of dishwashing liquid. (HGTV says to sprinkle baking soda on the soiled area and pour the liquid mixture over it, then gently rub the area with a cloth.)

Whatever you do, do it fast. Once the wetness dries, it’s much harder to get out the odor. In fact, before you do anything, try to absorb as much urine or other wet deposit as possible by standing (in your shoes) on newspaper that has been placed over an ample layer of paper towels so that they really push into the stain. Repeat the process until the area is as dry as you can get it. Then get to work with your solution of choice.


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