Easy Remedies to Eliminate the Odor
If you don't have time to clean the carpet thoroughly, there are some easy things that you can do to cut back on the smell. One of the most important things is to make sure that you vacuum thoroughly. A lot of odor causing dirt and bacteria can be lifted just by vacuuming.
Sprinkle baking soda all over the carpet and leave it overnight or at a minimum three to four hours. The hardest part about doing this will be to keep your pets off the carpet while the baking soda is there so they can't track through the rest of the house on their paws and fur. In the morning, vacuum the carpet thoroughly. Baking soda absorbs odors, so given enough time it can help to eliminate the smell in your carpet.
Keep a bottle of vinegar and water in equal parts on hand. This not only comes in handy when dealing with pet accidents, but you can use it on the carpet to help eliminate unwanted odors. Spray the carpet all over, not enough to saturate it, but enough to make the carpet slightly damp. Avoid the carpet until it dries. Vinegar is a natural inexpensive carpet refresher, though it may not seem like it until it dries. Open windows and doors to help get rid of the vinegar smell. When it dries up it will take odors with it.
Deep Cleaning to Remove Odors
At some point you will need to break down and clean the carpets to finally get the smell out. You can rent a carpet cleaner from your local grocery store if you don't own one for the easiest way to clean carpets. Make sure that the carpet cleaning solution you use is pet safe and follow all directions for the carpet cleaner and the solution.
If you would rather save your money and clean the carpet by hand, start by filling a bucket with warm water and adding a scoop of a bleach-free detergent and a cup of white vinegar. Use a sponge or clean cloth to clean the carpet starting at one side of the room and working your way to the other side. "Rinse" the carpet with clean water and a clean sponge and place a fan nearby to circulate air and help the carpet dry.
Keep your pets off of the carpet until the moisture is gone. You can sprinkle baking soda onto the damp carpet to help draw out excess moisture. Once the carpet is fully dry, vacuum it to remove the baking soda and fluff up the pile.