How to Get Cat Pee Smell Out of Mattress? – 5 Steps

Written by

Amy Sawy

Veterinarian. DVM


Joseph M. Plummer

Veterinarian, DVM, MVZ

how to get cat pee smell out of mattress

Imagine lying down after a long day, ready for much-needed rest. As your head hits your pillow, you detect a sharp, ammonia-like smell: cat pee!

How to get cat pee smell out of mattress is a common concern for owners of felines and is discussed thoroughly on Reddit.

Thankfully, everyday household items can work to clean the mess. All you need is water, vinegar, baking soda, liquid detergent, some towels, and possibly also hydrogen peroxide and large plastic sheets.

How to Clean Pat Pee From a Mattress


There is no use crying over spilt milk – or a puddle of cat pee.

Before worrying about the smell, you must first deal with the actual urine.

Whether you notice it just after the act or when dry, here are steps to clean cat pee from a mattress:

What To Prepare

  • Water and gentle liquid detergent
  • Fresh, dry towels
  • Vinegar
  • Baking Soda
  • A vacuum cleaner or broom

Step 1: Remove The Sheets

Remove your bed sheets, blankets, or anything else that may have gotten its share of urine. Throw them into the washing machine, or soak them in some water mixed with gentle, liquid detergent as soon as possible.

Step 2: Dry The Spot

Use your fresh, dry towels to clean pee stain from a mattress. Make sure to only dab and not rub. Otherwise, you might be spreading or pushing the stain deeper into the bed!

Step 3: Use Vinegar

Vinegar’s acidic nature is so strong it can dissolve dirt and grease, kill bacteria, and even get dry cat pee out of a mattress.

Make a solution of two cups of water, one cup dishwashing detergent, and two tablespoons of distilled white vinegar.

Gently pour it over the stain and allow your mattress to absorb the mixture for a few minutes. Then, blot out the excess liquid with paper towels. Remember: blot or dab, never rub!

Step 4: Drying with Baking Soda

Baking soda not only absorbs moisture; it also sucks up odors. This powder has the advantage of being very cheap as well, so sprinkling some over your mattress is an effective and affordable cleaning method.

Let the baking soda sit on the stain for several hours before removing it with a vacuum. A broom is also fine, but you may end up with some leftover powder.

This is technically just an extra step. You can clean cat pee from a mattress without baking soda – this procedure just speeds it up a little bit.

Step 5: Let Your Mattress Dry

Congratulations! You have successfully dealt with cat urine on a matress.

All that’s left to do is to let your mattress dry, preferably with fresh air that can also help get rid of cat pee smell on a mattress.

If you can’t hang the fabric outside, you can use an indoor fan to dry the spot and blow the odors away.

How to Get Rid of Cat Pee Smell on a Bed


Your quest to remove cat urine from a mattress was successful – but to your dismay, the cat pee’s distinct pungent odor still lingers. So, we’ll deal with this smell.

What To Prepare

  • Water and gentle liquid detergent
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Large plastic sheet
  • A vacuum cleaner or broom

Option 1: Hydrogen Peroxide and Baking Soda Combination

Hydrogen peroxide is a strong chemical that can kill yeast, bacteria, viruses, and mold. And cat pee is full of bacteria, hence the strong smell.

  • Mix together 8oz (about 240mL) of hydrogen peroxide, 4oz (about 120mL) laundry detergent, and 3 tablespoons of baking soda. Spray this liberally to the smelly area, and allow it to dry.
  • After some time, place a layer of baking soda on the mattress. How much you put down depends on how stinky the area still is.

Baking soda can speed up the drying process with its moisture-absorbing properties. Let it stay for a few hours before cleaning it off with a broom or vacuum cleaner.

Option 2: Vinegar

What if you don’t have hydrogen peroxide at home? Our old friend vinegar can come to the rescue once again.

  • Mix laundry detergent with one cup of vinegar and two cups of water, and spray liberally over the smelly area.
  • Place a plastic sheet on top of the mattress, and let the solution work for 24 hours if possible. If you don’t have much time, eight hours should do. You may be glad to know vinegar can remove sweat odor as well.
  • Bringing your mattress outdoors allows the sun and fresh air to dry it and kill any other lingering bacteria. If not, an excellent indoor fan will work too.

Helpful Tips

  • Clean As Soon As Possible

Cleaning ASAP makes the stain easier to remove and keeps your home clean for you and your family.

The danger of urine in a mattress cover or any part of the mattress is that the bacteria in the pee can develop mold and spread. If left unchecked, these things can cause serious health risks.

  • Avoid cleaning products with ammonia.

Cat pee contains ammonia, so if your pet smells it, it will encourage them to use that spot!

  • Enzyme-Based Cleaners

For your soft surfaces such as mattresses, carpets, rugs, and laundry on the floor, you can also try using enzyme-based cleaners available on the market.

The enzymes don’t mask odors; instead, they remove the sources that create foul smells. Plus, these cleaners will also work on feces and mud stains.

With carpets, check out this detailed guide to get the cat pee smell out of it properly.

Frequently Asked Questions


How Do I Get Urine Out Of A Memory Foam Mattress?

Our memory foam mattresses are incredibly soft and comfortable, making them lovable to our pet cats and us.

If your pet cat has marked yours as part of its territory, don’t worry. You can use the same steps listed above to get cat pee out of a bed of memory foam.

Why Does My Cat Keep Peeing On My Mattress?

There are a few possible reasons your cat keeps peeing on your mattress, which include the following:

  • Your cat is in heat.
  • Your cat is stressed due to a perceived threat or a change in the environment.
  • Your cat is not happy with its litter box, especially if it’s dirty or in a crowded area.
  • Your cat has a medical condition, possibly urinary tract infection, kidney disease, or diabetes.

Will Cat Urine Smell Ever Go Away?

Depending on how long the cat pee puddle has sat on your mattress, the uric acid in cat pee can remain hidden in both soft and porous, hard surfaces for years.

Even after thoroughly cleaning, a humid day can coax the smells out again.

Should this happen to you, consider hiring a professional cleaner, or using more heavy-duty enzyme-based cleaners created specifically for this job.

How to get pee stains out of a mattress?

I recommend following the steps we described above for cat pee.

If you’re dealing with human urine and the stains seem especially stubborn, use a toothbrush to rub baking soda into the dirty areas and follow up with a hydrogen peroxide solution (similar to the one we described above, but without the detergent).


Getting cat pee smell out of mattress is challenging but not impossible. There are many available solutions and products out there.

Living with your cat can be just like living with another person – it’s a relationship that takes understanding and work from both sides to make it amicable and pleasant for all.

Though you now know how to get cat pee smell out of mattress, we hope you never need this information and only ever have to deal with regular litter box cleaning!


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