You know how if one thing goes wrong in your world, it seems as though everything else falls apart as well? Now is a good time to tell you the other title I considered for this post: For Sale: A Naughty Kitty. With doctors appointments, hours of crying (baby and me), and way too much time scouring the internet for solutions to newborn allergies, I guess the four-legged fur babies have been feeling neglected. They tend to act out in these situations in a ploy for attention. Usually they scratch the sofa. Sometimes they attack the houseplants or an occasional house-guest (sorry Sis). Apparently, when these naughty behaviors don't get the results they are after, the behavior escalates until one morning I find a giant lake of urine on my bed. If you have pets, you have certainly been there. If not, trust me when I tell you this: it's coming for you. Sadly, this has happened so often in our house that we now have a set arsenal to rid the area of the offending fluid. Here is what works for us:
A 12 Step Process To Remove Pet Stains From Your Mattress (or other areas in your home)
Step 1: Identify the culprit. If you are lucky enough - no scratch that - smart enough to have just one furry creature sharing your house, this step will be fairly straight forward. If you have sucker plastered across your forehead and you just can't say no to a cute whiskered face then this step could get complicated. First look around the scene of the crime, the offender is usually not smart enough to whiz and leave (either that or they receive a sick, twisted satisfaction watching you discover their little "gift"). He's probably under the bed. Yep, he's there, crouching just out of reach. You get down all fours and deftly swipe at him while spewing forth obscenities, but to no avail. You begin to screech. Strange, guttural sounds that you have never heard before escape your throat like a mental patient trying to escape a killer bee attack. You never thought that you could hate that orange striped, whiskered, purr-factory with so much vengeance. You have just rounded the bend to crazy town.
Step 2: Throw his furry arse outside. Remember how you advocated for kitties to stay indoors to all your outdoor pet friends? And spouted off all those statistics about pets living longer, being healthier and safer if they are kept indoors? Remember how you looked down on your neighbors for letting their pets roam the neighborhood and sniffed disapprovingly in their direction? None of that matters anymore. You are blinded by rage. You have that crazy look in your eyes. You begin to imagine your life without offending kitties and you begin to laugh hysterically at the thought of a fur-free sofa. You have visions of some unsuspecting fool driving off with your kitty carrier strapped in the backseat. Your mind reels with the freedom of never having to swiffer piles of kitty fur off the bedroom floor. You have turned into an irrational crazy person. Yes, he is much safer outside the range of your profuse spewing of obscenities. Ignore the sad little meows and big sad eyes peeking in through the windows. It's a ploy. He's evil.
Step 3: Spread the blame. Pick up the phone and call your now least favorite brother. You know the one. The one that suckered you into taking not one, but two (two!!!) furry little rodents. Spew obscenities. Hang up. Take a deep breath.
Step 4: Strip the bed. Immediately put the soiled bedding into the washer with two cups of full strength white distilled vinegar. Repeat the wash cycle again, this time using detergent and one whole box of baking soda. That's right, now is not the time to be cheap. It's $.79. Use the WHOLE box. You'll thank me later.
If you were faced with a giant lake of urine, chances are the "lake" soaked through to the mattress. If that is the case, continue through to step 12. If not, count your lucky stars and offer a little dance to the pet owner gods for sparing you this time around.
Step 5: Gather your arsenal. You will need:
disposable cloth rags
one box of baking soda
Step 6: Blot the area. Using the paper towels, blot up as much of the "lake" as you can. You may want to arm yourself with some thick rubber gloves. It depends on your "fluid" tolerance. Mine is very low.
Step 7: Mix and spritz. Fill the spray bottle with full strength vinegar and spray the entire area until it is damp but not soaked. Let it sit for 10 few minutes and then blot up with a cloth rag.
Step 8: Mix and spritz again. Fill the spray bottle with a strong solution of oxy-clean and water. We use about 1/4 cup of oxy-clean to 2 cups of water. Spray the area until damp but not soaked. Let it sit for 10 minutes and then blot up with a cloth rag.
Step 9: Sprinkle and soak. Sprinkle a whole box of baking soda all around the area. Again, a WHOLE box is necessary. You are trying to save your mattress which I'm guessing costs a heck of a lot more than a measly box of baking soda or two. Rub it in lightly with a clean dry cloth and let sit for a few hours to allow the soda to absorb all the moisture
Step 10: Vacuum. Using the hand attachment, vacuum the mattress, making sure to get all the baking soda.
Repeat steps 7-10 if necessary.
Step 11: Bask. Remake the bed and breathe in the intoxicating scent of fresh bedding pulled from the wash. Revel in your kitty-free bed that now smells April fresh.
Step 12: Admit to your weakness. As the hours drag on your stalwart resolve begins to falter. Your bed looks empty. Your kitty looks very sorry. You turn Pandora on to the Mumford and Sons station to drown out the now frantic kitty cries. Big mistake. They are playing "Little Lion Man" and a tear streaks down your cheek.
*Disclaimer: This song is not "family friendly"
That is his song. The orange striped, whiskered, purr-factory little Lion Man that is now staring at you through the open window. You open the door as you sing "it was not your fault, but mine" and you vow to pay better attention to ALL the babies in your life.