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Even the best cats and dogs sometimes have pee mistakes, and there is nothing worse than when your pet pees on your yoga mat. Yoga Mats that fall victim to dog or cat urine must be cleaned thoroughly and properly. Pee-stained yoga mats not only stink but will become a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi that can harm the person using them.
The good news is that pet urine is easy to clean from yoga mats and in this article, we’ll walk through the process of getting pee out off of your yoga mat.
First, let’s talk about why pets urinate on yoga mats and how to avoid it. Then we’re going to jump into why it’s important to clean cat or dog pee off of yoga mats. Finally, we’ll go into detail about how to clean pet pee on a yoga mat.
Why Do Pets Pee On Yoga Mats?
Pets sometimes pee on their owner’s belongings, such as yoga mats, to add their scent to their owner’s space which is kind of a gross way of being closer to you. Other pets are not so sweet and instead pee on your yoga mat to mark Is as their part of their territory.
Well-loved yoga mats are filled with our scents, even if they don’t stink to us. During our practices we’ve stepped on our yoga mats; we’ve probably rolled in them, laid down on them, and sweated all over them.
Pets love their owner’s scents.
Adolescent and young pets sometimes pee on their owner’s spaces and things to add their scent. This is basically your pet’s way of saying, “I was here too with my friend.”
As pets grow into adults, they also develop the habit of marking—Pets mark places and things as part of their territory.
Pets do this due to their instinct to keep other animals away from their living spaces. This is their way of saying, “Keep Off My Place.” Pet marking is a behavior exhibited by both male and female pets.
Stopping A Dog Or Cat From Peeing On Your Yoga Mat
I wish there was a magic spell to protect your yoga mat from your pet marking it, but there isn’t.
The best way to stop your cat or dog from marking your yoga mat is to roll it up and put it away after your practice. But, we all sometimes leave our yoga mats out, and sometimes our pets (and family) make poor choices. When that happens, we have to clean our yoga mats to avoid repeats.
Do You Have To Clean Pet Pee Off Your Yoga Mat?
When your cat or dog pees on your yoga mat, you must thoroughly clean it as soon as possible. The longer the pee stays on your yoga mat, the deeper it will soak in which makes it stink more, grow bacteria, stain, and tempt your pet to do it again!
Your yoga mat will stink like pee.
Dog, cat, and even pet rabbit urine have a strong and pungent smell. Pet urine that has stayed too long on a surface will smell like ammonia and the longer it remains untreated the worse its going to smell.
A yoga mat that has been thoroughly cleaned of pet urine will be free from odor. If your mat still smells, it means that there is still traces of ammonia in it.
Your mat is also always touching your skin during yoga. A mat with ammonia traces on it may cause respiratory irritations or skin reactions.
Pet urine will make your yoga mat will be unsanitary.
A yoga mat that is peed on by your pet will be the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. All wastes contain bacteria that will thrive in moist and damp places. Your mat has been sweated on and has probably been exposed to water as well. Adding urine loaded with bacteria spells disaster.
If not cleaned thoroughly, bacteria and fungi will grow on and inside your mat. These bacteria, when inhaled or ingested, can cause sicknesses. Frequent skin contact with a surface with bacteria/fungal growth will also cause skin irritations.
Pet urine will stain a yoga mat.
The appeal of yoga mats is their beautiful and colorful designs. Pet urine will not only stink up a mat; it will also stain it. Seeing your mat’s design destroyed by a vast pee stain will be a waste. Pee stains can be removed as long as your mat has not been soaking in urine for long.
Your pet will keep peeing on your mat.
A yoga mat that is not thoroughly clean will always be a target for pet accidents. This is especially true for dogs. Dogs are infamous for their penchant for repeatedly peeing in the same spot. Dogs have a keen sense of smell, and if they can smell their pee on a spot/object, it tells them that it is the right spot to urinate.
This is another reason to ensure no urine smell is left on your mat. If you can smell any lingering urine odor, your pet will most likely smell it too.
Cleaning Dog Or Cat Urine On A Yoga Mat
We recommend a four-step process for cleaning dog and cat pee off of a yoga. Those steps include vinegar, baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, and warm water. Honestly, this yoga mat cleaning formula will work on any kind of urine.
Now let’s walk through each of these steps.
Steps To Getting Cat or Dog Pee Out Of A Yoga Mat
1. Vinegar & Water
Mix warm water with vinegar in a 2:1 ratio. For example, two cups warm water to one cup white vinegar.
Then use a paper towel to clean up the pee so you’re starting with a dry surface.
Using a clean cloth, use the water and vinegar mixture to thoroughly clean the area three to four times.
Dry the area with a clean dry towel, and proceed to step 2.
2. Baking Soda
Liberally sprinkle the area with baking soda. You should put enough on there that you can’t see the yoga mat underneath the baking soda.
Then you’ll let that baking soda sit there for at least thirty minutes and up to two hours.
As the powder begins to absorb the urine and leftover vinegar mixture you will see it begin to get damp and perhaps even foam up a little as the baking soda reacts with the vinegar.
After you let it sit until it doesn’t seem to be getting any wetter, use a clean cloth and warm water to wipe it all off.
3. Hydrogen Peroxide
This is an optional step to disinfect your yoga mat. The baking soda used in step two has some disinfectant qualities but not as great as that found in hydrogen peroxide.
You just need to know that hydrogen peroxide can sometimes stain a yoga mat, so at the very least you should probably test it on a corner by letting it set for a few minutes and then dry completely before you decide if you want to use it.
This is a personal choice. Some on our Charmed Yoga Team would never consider skipping this step to insure their mat was disinfected. However, others on our team would just sniff the spot and if they didn’t smell pee they’d consider the job almost done.
There is no one right way, so do what works for you.
4. Warm Water
Finally, you should thoroughly clean your yoga mat with clean warm water and a clean rag to insure you have removed all of the cleaning products used in the above steps.
Then give your yoga mat a smell and see if it still stinks like pee.
If doesn’t stink anymore, then just leave it unrolled (away from your pets!) until it’s completely dry. Then roll it up and put it away!
If it still stinks, then repeat all four steps. Be sure to start with fresh cleaning supplies so you’re not transferring old pee back onto your cleaner yoga mat.
Remember if you can still smell pet urine on your yoga mat it is not clean. Keep working on it.
What If You Can’t Get The Pee Stink Out Of A Yoga Mat
If you didn’t find the pee mess for quite some time, the stink might have really been absorbed and have become very difficult to get off with surface cleaning.
If this is the case, you can soak your mat in a basin.
Fill your basin with warm water, vinegar, baking soda, and dishwashing soap (watch out, it’s going to foam).
Let your yoga soak for 30 minutes before scrubbing with a cloth. Wash your mat with water and let it air dry. Repeat this soaking process as needed
What Should I Avoid When Cleaning Yoga Mats?
Getting rid of the cat and dog urine in yoga mats can be challenging and frustrating. This is why you have to be very patient when it comes to cleaning your soiled mat. Do not use chemicals that can be harmful to you. Also, harsh chemicals can destroy the integrity of your mat, and you might end up with not just a filthy mat, but an unusable one.
Cleaning Supplies Not Safe For Yoga Mats
- Do not use hot water. Boiling water won’t get the smell of pet urine off your mat faster. Hot water might also cause the dyes and colors of your mat to bleed.
- Do not use bleach. Bleach is another major no-no when cleaning yoga mats. Bleach is a harsh chemical than can be absorbed into your carpet. Chemicals that get absorbed into your mat can cause skin irritation, especially during frequent use.
- Do not use disinfectants and wipes: Disinfectants such as alcohol are too harsh for yoga mats. Alcohol, when absorbed, can degrade your carpet faster and cause skin irritation when engrossed in your rug.
- Do not use brushes with stiff bristles to clean your mat: when cleaning your mat, only use a damp cloth to scrub. Do not use a brush with stiff bristles for scrubbing. Hard brushes’ bristles can destroy your mat’s surface, possibly erasing its design and damaging its traction.
Commercial Cleaners For Pee Odor On Yoga Mats
Zoop is yoga mat friendly as it does not contain harmful chemicals. It works so well because it’s specially formulated to break down enzymes in pet urine.
If Everything Fails?
Well, if your pet’s pee is particularly stinky, it might just be time for a new yoga mat.
We’d encourage you to take this experience as a learning experience to pick up your mat when you’re done and as a sign that you deserve a new yoga mat.
You should probably start by looking at some of our yoga mat guides!
~The Charmed Yoga Team