How To Get Rid of Dog Gland Smell From Furniture (Stop It Now!)

A cute golden retriever lying on yellow sofa

Dogs are fun to have around, but let’s admit it: none of us likes to have our house smelling funny because of them. When dogs consume a poor diet, are not regularly groomed, or have issues with their anal glands, they can stink and make our furniture smell too. How do we get rid of it?

Here are effective ways to get rid of dog gland smell from furniture:

  1. Use activated charcoal.
  2. Spritz your dogs with deodorizing spray.
  3. Use chemical deodorizers on the furniture.
  4. Deodorize with DIY solutions.
  5. Use washable covers.
  6. Vacuum thoroughly.
  7. Groom your dogs regularly.
  8. Schedule a professional cleaning service.
  9. Check for and treat anal sac disease.

In this article, we’ll find out more about these tips on how to get rid of stinky dog smells from our home. 

1. Use Activated Charcoal

If you’re looking for a quick solution to odors in your home, activated charcoal is a great option. Activated charcoal is effective in deodorizing smelly areas of the house, be it due to dog odors, mildew, or even lingering food smells.

All you need to do is place small heaps of charcoal in parts of the house that need deodorizing. You can either put small charcoal blocks on a saucer and leave them in a corner or use an activated charcoal bag, like these Majime Life Activated Charcoal Bags on that you can stick wherever you like.

The second option is best if you want to deodorize a couch or don’t want to deal with the hassle of pets scattering charcoal all over the house. You can place the charcoal bags in the corners of your couch or underneath pillows.This way, you will be able to remove bad odors while making sure you don’t get charcoal stains on your furniture.

It can be tough to remove charcoal stains on cloth, so be careful when handling activated charcoal.

2. Spritz Your Dogs With Deodorizing Spray

If you’re looking to prevent dog odors from sticking to your furniture, you can also opt to use deodorizers. Try this Kin+Kind Dog Deodorizing Spray (available on in vanilla and almond scent on your dogs to keep them smelling fresh. It absorbs odors while simultaneously nourishing their coat, so even if you forget to bathe them, they won’t be walking stink bags.

Of course, pet deodorizers should not replace regular bathing, but they can come in handy whenever you need a quick fix. Deodorizers that are proven safe by vets can be sprayed on as often as needed – such as after a walk in the park or before your dog gets a chance to settle on the couch.

As they say, prevention is better than cure. It’s much easier to make sure that your dog doesn’t stink up your furniture than having to deal with lingering odors.

3. Use Chemical Deodorizers on the Furniture

Another quick fix for smelly furniture is using chemical deodorizers, like this Arm & Hammer Air Freshener on This is safe for pets and can make rooms smell fresh for a long time. However, if you are dealing with smells that have lingered in your home for a while, spraying air fresheners or deodorizers may not be enough. 

In such cases, clean the couch, carpet, and other furniture before spraying deodorizers in your home. Using deodorizers to simply cover up the smell can actually make the problem worse, causing a cloying smell that’s a mixture of smelly dogs and perfume.

By cleaning your house and furniture first, you will be able to deal with the root of the problem while also making your house smell clean and fresh.

4. Deodorize With DIY Solutions

Often, it’s furniture items like the couch and carpet where odors tend to linger. If you want to deal with specific pieces of furniture, you can use DIY deodorizing solutions with items easily found in your kitchen. These include:

close up of natural DIY cleaners for dog gland smell like vinegar, baking soda, salt, lemon
Eco-friendly natural cleaners. Vinegar, baking soda, salt, lemon and cloth. Homemade green cleaning.

Baking Soda Solution 

To make and use baking soda solution: 

  1. Mix baking soda and water in a spray bottle, making sure that the baking soda has completely dissolved. 
  2. Spray a thin layer on your couch and carpet and leave it on. 
  3. Once the solution has dried, vacuum thoroughly.

Vinegar Solution

To make and use this solution:

  1. Mix white vinegar and water in a spray bottle and spritz on furniture. 
  2. When spraying the solution, hold the spray bottle a considerable distance from your couch so that only light mists get in contact with the material.

These solutions can be pretty strong, though and may damage the material of your furniture if you’re not careful. To check whether your furniture can handle it, spray on a small inconspicuous spot first and see what happens.

5. Use Washable Covers

To prevent odors from settling in your couch and pillows, make sure to cover them with removable, washable sheets. This way, every time you detect an unpleasant odor, you can very easily replace the covers with clean ones, and voila! Your house will smell fresh and clean again.

When washing couch covers and pillow cases, do so with a mixture of detergent and apple cider vinegar, especially if you have not been able to replace them for some time. The added apple cider vinegar will completely eliminate strong odors that detergent might fail to get rid of.

You can also use this mixture when washing blankets, bed sheets, and carpets for that extra cleaning and deodorizing effect.

6. Vacuum Thoroughly

Vacuum your home and soft furniture such as cushions, couches, carpets, and pillows thoroughly. This will help get rid of pet dander, dust, and other debris that may be causing your house to smell.

Be mindful of doing a thorough vacuum of these pieces of furniture as well as the corners in your house before doing any deodorizing. Get in those hidden areas, like underneath couches or behind appliances. This helps to give you a clean slate and prevents dirt from accumulating, making cleaning easier and quicker every time.

7. Groom Your Dogs Regularly

Another thing you can do to prevent your dogs from becoming smelly (and making your house smelly in turn) is grooming them regularly. It’s advisable to bathe dogs once or twice a month. However, you can bathe them more frequently if they’re more active or whenever they are obviously dirty, like after they’ve been playing in the mud.

Extra hairy breeds will also benefit from regular trimming so that their fur doesn’t collect too much dirt. Also, don’t neglect your dog’s dental hygiene – remember to brush their teeth.

If you’re not sure how to properly groom your dog, you can go to a groomer and ask for their advice.

8. Schedule a Professional Cleaning Service

If you think your furniture needs some deep cleaning that’s beyond your skills, don’t hesitate to seek help. Schedule a professional cleaning service that can deep-clean not only extremely dirty and smelly couches, but even your entire house, should you feel the need for it.

One indicator that your carpet or your couch needs the attention of a professional cleaner is if it makes your skin itchy or irritated whenever you sit on it or touch it. Another indicator is if the smell just won’t go away even after you’ve tried deodorizers or washing the slipcovers.

9. Check for and Treat Anal Sac Disease

There are tolerable dog smells, and then there are fishy smells that sometimes come from dogs. A nasty smell can be an indicator that your dog is suffering from anal sac disease and involuntarily releasing stinky fluid from its anal sac.

Problems with the anal sac in dogs can either be due to inflammation, an abscess or infection, anal sac tumors, or impactions. Aside from the telltale fishy odor, dogs with anal sac disease may also drag their bottoms in an attempt to relieve their discomfort.

If you notice any of these signs, take your dog to the vet right away.


It’s possible for your beloved dogs to lounge about in the house without leaving your furniture stinking. If you’ve been suffering from a smelly house, try these easy tips, and you’ll soon start coming home to a clean, fresh-smelling house!

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