I sometimes receive inquires that fall outside my primary expertise. Most recently, a reader wrote: “My dog barfed onto my car carpeting last week. I am having to drive with all the windows open in the cold. What can I do?”

Although this doesn't come up often, I suppose some readers could relate as service animals and family pets can find a place inside various facilities. So, I will be glad to provide some general guidelines that may help.

First of all, why didn’t you immediately clean it up rather than allowing it to soak in for a period of time? It appears that all you did was blot the carpet after the accident which did not deal with the real problem. In most cases, carpet spills should be dealt with as soon as possible to minimize the chances of it saturating/staining the carpet fibers.

Following are some general suggestions to consider, however, I offer no guarantees.

  1. Prepare a solution of dish detergent and warm water in a spray bottle.
  2. Spray the solution to the point of soaking and allow to stand for a few minutes.
  3. Use a wet/dry vacuum cleaner to suck up the slurry.
  4. Repeat step No. 2 at least two more times. You should notice an improvement in the odor but it may still linger.
  5. A final step is to soak a terry cloth towel with a solution of dish detergent and water; wring thoroughly, fold to fit the size of the spill and place a weight (brick?) on the towel. Do not move until totally dry.

There is a possibility that the carpet backing has been soaked with the vomit. If so, you may need to pull up the carpet and clean the back side and/or replace the backing. Make sure you allow the carpet to dry thoroughly.

Mixing in a good deodorant may or may not help at this juncture. There is also the possibility that a pet enzyme might help. Follow label directions and test first before committing.

Does anyone in the reading audience have any other suggestions for our friend? If so, please share.

Your comments and feedback are always appreciated. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean…

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.