There is no worse feeling than enjoying a walk only to find out that you stepped in a pile of dog poop. The odor lingers, and it becomes hard to get rid of the scent after you clean your shoe.
Eliminating this odor is not impossible, so you do not need to worry about permanently running your favorite kicks. There are plenty of options to get them smelling fresh and clean again.
How to Clean Your Shoes
The last thing you want to do is walk inside to get your shoes clean. This will track the dog poop all over the house, giving you extra messes to clean up.
If possible, stay outside and get near a hose. This will give you a strong stream to clean the majority of the dog poop off your shoe.
Once you have cleaned them to the best of your ability, you can take them off and carry them inside. If any additional cleaning is required, you can do this with minimal mess.
Using a toothbrush or sponge to get in between the ridges is very helpful. You can clean your shoes with one of these tools in a sink.
Let warm water flow over the dirty area as you continue scrubbing. This should get any remaining residue off of your shoe.
After you try these methods and there is still poop that you cannot get off, you can throw your shoes in the washing machine alone. This does depend on the type of shoes, but most shoes can be safely washed in the machine if you put them into a pillow case.
Run them through a cycle, and see if this gets them fully clean. You can then set them out to air dry in a warm area.
An additional option you can try is using a steamer. Handheld steamers are made for getting heavily soiled residue out of your garments and shoes.
This can give you the extra clean finish that you need if you just cannot seem to get into all the ridges on the bottom of your shoe.
Sometimes, it is difficult to get your shoe fully clean even after trying the above methods. There is one alternative option to try if you cannot access a hose or do not want to use your sink or washing machine.
Put the shoe in a plastic bag, and place it in the freezer. Once the poop hardens, you can take the shoe outside and chisel off the residue with some kind of scraper tool.
This might not be ideal, but it prevents you from having to handle your shoe when the poop is still fresh and difficult to clean. The good thing is that you can try all of these methods to see which one works best.
Disinfecting the Home
When you clean something such as this inside of your home, you want to make sure that you are properly disinfecting all areas you touch and everywhere the shoes have touched.
Any type of disinfectant wipe is great for cleaning off surfaces. This will get rid of the smell while making sure that you are not spreading germs throughout your house.
You should also clean your sink with a bleach-based cleaner if you do end up using it. This will have the same effect as using disinfectant wipes on other surfaces.
Make sure that you always thoroughly wash your hands, and do not forget to disinfect any door knobs or cabinets you touch. These are areas that are commonly touched in your household, and germs can spread easily.
It is best to run your washing machine through a cycle without anything inside before you wash your clothes there. This will ensure that there are no remnants left over that can ruin your clothing and spread the problem.
Use hot water, and throw some laundry detergent in there. You can also add bleach to disinfect the machine.
This will give you peace of mind before you choose to wash your next load of laundry. It will also keep the machine free of any trapped debris that tends to build up.
Odor Removal Tricks
After your shoe is clean, you have one more issue to tackle — the lingering odor that comes from dog poop. This can remain in the air even after you fully clean your shoes.
By using these tricks, you will make sure that your home still smells clean and you are not reminded of the unfortunate accident you had to deal with. It will also boost your mood and freshen the environment as a whole.
Febreeze works great. It is a deodorizer that lasts a lot longer than most air fresheners.
It also comes in many different scents, even extra-strength varieties for stubborn odors. You can Febreeze the area that you were in when you brought the dirty shoe in the house to get rid of some of the stench.
After you give the room(s) a general spray, you can light a scented candle. This will give an ongoing effect that can freshen the air for the rest of the day.
Pick your favorite scent, and keep the candle burning for the next few hours. Candles are great since they also have lingering effects.
If you did happen to get some dog poop inside, you can freshen the carpet or rug with some baking soda. This is known for having an odor-eliminating property, and it will neutralize the area after you get it clean.
Not only does baking soda get rid of the smell, but it also absorbs it. This way, the smell gets trapped in the baking soda once you spread it over the dirty areas.
Vacuum it up when you are done letting it sit on the dirty surface. 10 to 15 minutes should give it plenty of time to activate.
If necessary, you can also place baking soda inside of your shoes. Sprinkle some inside of your shoes, and this will help with the overall stench.
Place them in a warm area, and just let the baking soda sit there for a few hours. When you are ready to wear them, you can simply dust the baking soda away that has not been absorbed by the soles of your shoes.
This is great for eliminating the stench of dog poop and will also freshen your shoes. When you do this, it also prevents your feet from getting smelly when you wear the shoes.
If the baking soda does not fully eliminate the odor, you can turn to activated charcoal. You will want to place your shoes in a plastic bag and then sprinkle in the activated charcoal.
This is another product that is meant to lift and eliminate odors. Keep your shoes in the bag with the charcoal for a few days if the smell is stubborn.
The downside to this method is that you will have to go without this pair of shoes for a bit, but you will have fresh and clean shoes as an end result. You do not need to scrub or shake them; just let them sit, and they should be good to go.
If you cannot get access to activated charcoal, you most likely have vinegar in the house. Mix a 50:50 ratio of vinegar and water.
You will then put it in a spray bottle to prevent it from getting all over your hands. Vinegar has a strong smell on its own, but it will eliminate other foul odors.
Spray your shoes down with this mixture, then let them dry before you wear them. If you need to do this in a rush, you can use an old towel or paper towels to pat your shoes dry.
Dog poop is a very strong scent, so you might have to repeat some of these steps before you really get the smell to go away. Try not to get frustrated because more often than not, your shoes will be salvageable.
These options are easy and convenient. Most of the time, you will already have all the products you need right inside of your home.
With a little patience, you will be able to restore your shoes and not have to worry about forever smelling the reminder each time you wear those shoes. Trial and error is all it takes to get them clean and back to your preferred standards.
Stepping in dog poop is a huge hassle, but you will find that cleaning it and removing the odor does not have to be. Even when you have not stepped in poop, these methods will keep your shoes extra fresh all the time.
No matter how careful you are, there are so many chances for this to happen to you. Go out and enjoy nature.
If you step in dog poop, you now have all of the tips you need to restore your shoes and get back out there. Getting your shoes clean right away is the key to preventing the smell from lingering and the debris from becoming too hard to clean.
Ben has a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering. When not constructing or remodeling X-Ray Rooms, Cardiovascular Labs, and Pharmacies, you can find him at home with wife and two daughters. Outside of family, He loves grilling and barbequing on his Big Green Egg and Blackstone Griddle, as well as working on projects around the house.
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