How to get rid of the dog gland smell on furniture?

No doubt anal gland in dogs produces a very pungent and fishy-smelling fluid that makes your cuddly dog stinky. However, it’s a natural process. Most dogs produce these fluids in small amounts to mark their territory while some produce them in response to involuntary responses like fear or stress. However, there are times when these glands become full, impacted, or infected and that stink can get stuck on surfaces a dog used to sit on. Whatever the reason, to help you out, I compiled a list of pet-friendly methods to get rid of gland smell on furniture and your dog, too!

Remove all furniture fabrics and machine wash them 

The most important point to remember is that the fabrics and covers of the furniture are the main hubs of smells. As the dogs use to sit on them and leave anal gland fluids on them to mark them as their territories.

How to Get Rid of Dog Gland Smell on Funiture?

To get rid of the dog smell, take off all the covers and items of clothing on your furniture and wash them in a washing machine using a mild detergent. Make sure to use cold water for washing all the fabrics, as hot water causes the smells to set in the fabrics.

Use apple cider vinegar along with detergent 

If the fabrics coming out of the washing machine are still smelling foul, try adding one-quarter cup of apple cider vinegar along with regular detergent. Run the machine on a regular cycle with a cold water setting. 

Mist vinegar spray on furniture to get rid of the dog gland smell 

Grab a water sprayer, and fill it with vinegar and water in a 1:3 ratio. Spray this solution onto the surfaces of your furniture without soaking the fabric and immediately dry it with a washcloth.

Spray vinegar + baking soda solution to eliminate the dog gland smell

Baking soda is a natural deodorizer and an effective odor remover. Mix a 1:1 ratio of white vinegar and water with one-quarter cup of baking soda in a water spray bottle to make an effective homemade solution. Lightly spray this solution onto the furniture that smells bad and let sit for 5 minutes. Then wipe it using a clean dry towel.

Dry cleaning with baking soda 

Sprinkle baking soda in powder form over the surfaces of the furniture producing a fishy smell of dogs gland and let it sit there overnight. Use a vacuum cleaner to remove baking powder from your furniture.


Hydrogen peroxide + dishwashing liquid 

If the fishy smell still persists, then try another effective remedy by using a mixture of hydrogen peroxide in dish soap. Make a thick paste of hydrogen peroxide in the liquid soap and rub it on the fabric of the furniture that smells bad. First sprinkle the powdered baking soda on the effective couch or fabric then using a clean cloth, apply the soapy solution. Gently dab the cloth to work the solution onto the fabric, then wipe out the excess solution using another wet cloth. Let the furniture air dry.

Use pet-friendly enzyme cleaning sprays on furniture

These sprays are non-toxic in nature, safe for pets and kids, plus works well to remove the lingering smell of dog gland that is sometimes hard to remove using homemade baking soda and vinegar sprays.

Spray some air freshener to cover up the dog gland smell

Buy an air freshener that is specially formulated to cover up the pet smell and spray it on the furniture to get rid of the stinky smell. Avoid overusing certain air freshness as some of them contain chemicals that are not good for the health of your dog.

Use fresh air and sun combo to get rid of dog gland smell 

Use the combination of fresh air and sunlight to get the dog smell out of your couches, cushions, and other furniture fabrics. In order to do so, open up the windows, and let the air in. Better to place the blankets, pillows, couches, and other belongings of the dog that smell bad, outdoors in direct sunlight and let the air and sun work to freshen up the fabrics without damaging them.

Put a covering over your furnishings.

Protect your furniture with fabrics that you can easily remove and wash. Slipcovers are a better option that is easily removed and washed. Moreover, provide an effective barrier between the dog’s anal gland and your furniture.

Call a professional carpet cleaner.

If all the above-mentioned tricks won’t produce any fruit and the smelling agents seep deep into couches and other furnishings, then ask for help from professional cleaners. They use machines with an upholstery attachment to clean your sofas, couches, and other bedding. They will use odor-neutralizing solutions and stain removers to help you in getting rid of the dog gland smell.

After all the cleaning procedures, if the fishy dog smell still persists and increases day by day, then you should address the root cause of this smell that are anal glands.

Damp the area around your dog’s butt daily.

Dampen a soft cloth with warm water and a mild, dog-friendly soap. Lift your dog’s tail and wipe away any poop residue you can see, along with the fishy-smelling scent marker residue that you can’t see. Pat your pup’s rear end dry with a soft cloth to avoid trapping moisture under its tail.

Bathe your dog as often as once per week to avoid dog gland smell

Don’t bathe your dog more than once a week, except in the occasional emergency. If they don’t have an odor problem, indoor dogs can go up to a few months between baths.

Keep your dog smelling fresh.

To stop your furniture from smelling like a fishy dog, you’ll want to get at the root of the problem: your smelly dog! Try this method between baths:

  • Mix equal amounts of apple cider vinegar and water.
  • Pour it into a spray bottle and spritz your dog all over.
  • After you’re done, lightly sprinkle the baking powder onto your dog’s fur.
  • Brush everything out, and pat any excess moisture dry.

When to seek medical help?

Anal glands are two scent-producing machines right on the left and right side of the anal opening of every dog. They are covered in sacs by nature. Sometimes, those glands become swollen and start producing an extra amount of fishy-smelling fluid to make your dogs stinky and unbearable. However, there are signs.

  • Watch out if you notice a really fishy odor.
  • Scooting, licking, and other signs of discomfort.
  • Obvious swelling to the left and right of the anal opening. 
  • If you see blood or pus oozing from either anal sac, or if they’re red and noticeably warm to the touch, the sacs may be infected.

Take your dog to the vet in either case. Only a vet can assess whether or not it’s due to an infection.

If you find this article about how to get rid of dog smell on furniture and want to know more about taking care of your pet dog then click on the link.

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