Pet Stains on Wool Rugs

Posted on: December 5th, 2012

Pet Accidents, such as urine, feces and vomit are the most common stains found on rugs. Pet stains on wool rugs are almost always permanent because the face yarns are discolored almost instantly.

On Natural fibers such as wool, silk and cotton it only takes a few minutes of exposure to create a permanent stain. Not only does animal urine discolor rug face yarns, it can also break the dye-fiber bond causing dyes colors to run or migrate. Animal urine is acidic and when it comes in contact with bacteria in the air, the pH shifts from acidic to alkaline. Since most wool is acid dyed, this high pH residue can break the dye/wool bond and cause the rug to bleed before, during and after cleaning. Many pet foods contain red dye, perhaps, to make the food look more appetizing to the owners. If an animal becomes ill after eating, the regurgitation can leave a red stain. Your Master Rug Cleaner may or may not be able to remove this stain. Repetitive pet accidents also cause odor. Urine odors can range from localized, occasional mishaps to overall contamination. In addition, animals in continuous contact with rugs can also create an odor from the transfer of fur oils. This “body odor” is very difficult to completely remove. At times, this odor is not discovered until the rug becomes wet during cleaning. The cleaning process and high humidity will exacerbate any existing odor. When you discover an animal accident on your rug, absorb as much liquid as possible using absorbent cotton or paper towels. If you do not act immediately, the stain will probably become permanent. Do not attempt stain removal with any consumer spotting products as your rug. If you are outside our service areas look for a Master Rug Cleaner in your city.


Look at the result of repetitive animal urine contamination. The dye/wool bond is broken and the dyes have bled through to the canvas backing.

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