Cleaning a cat-peed leather jacket?
October 26, 2009 1:10 PM   Subscribe

Cleaning a cat-peed leather jacket?

I just returned home from a Scrabble tournament to find my leather jacket on the floor. My fears were confirmed when I picked it up and noticed a certain... waft to it.

How can I clean this without ruining the jacket? There are no tags on the inside with cleaning suggestions. If possible, I'd love to avoid sending it to a dry cleaners (I was quoted 50$). If I have to go that route, will they get the stench out?
posted by iftheaccidentwill to Home & Garden (10 answers total)
I would start with some vinegar, but you will probably want to get one of those enzymatic odor removers from a pet store. Test under the arm or on the back of a pocket flap or some other hidden area first to make sure it doesn't stain.
posted by caddis at 1:19 PM on October 26, 2009

I had a leather jacket that was peed on by a cat. NOTHING worked. Not pet waste cleaners guaranteed to remove the odor, not leather cleaners, not baking soda, not bleach (i got desperate). I ended up having to throw it out. BUT ymmv, it was at least 16 years old, and the leather had worn out quite a bit, rendering it even more porous than regular leather. Best of luck to you!
posted by lodie6 at 1:26 PM on October 26, 2009

I tried everything to remove cat pee odor from one of my coats. For me it was impossible.
posted by at the crossroads at 1:43 PM on October 26, 2009

Nature's Miracle is an enzyme based cleaner that works reasonably well on carpeting. I've never tried it on leather, but it's pretty gentle. I'd try a really small quantity in a discrete part of the jacket to make sure it plays nice before doing a full cleaning.

It's also handy to have a bit around in case the cats have other out-of-box accidents. It's not perfect, but it's better than anything else I've found.
posted by quin at 2:19 PM on October 26, 2009

I agree with caddis, try the cleaners that use enzymes to break down the smell. I used a product called Odor Mute on a very, very bad apartment carpet a few years ago. Someone laid down new carpet without cleaning the concrete pad underneath - which was saturated. Sprayed the back of the new carpet + pad with a concentrated blend of the stuff (not much water) and then literally slopped it onto the concrete itself. Left overnight and returned to zero smell. It completely broke it down.

I've never used it on leather before, but it's the first thing I'd try.
posted by empyrean at 2:24 PM on October 26, 2009

We've tried Nature's Miracle, too, will varying success. It's ok, but some cat pee just can't be defeated.

For a leather jacket, I would highly recommend you seek the assistance of the best professional cleaner you can find, preferably a shop that specializes in leather cleaning and care.
posted by Thorzdad at 2:26 PM on October 26, 2009

I cleaned cat pee from a (not super fancy or expensive) leather jacket with Nature's Miracle last year. I sort of figured the jacket was ruined anyway, so why not give it a go. I basically saturated it and let it dry, which took a while. I expected it to change the color or texture of the leather in an obvious way, and was pleased to find it didn't. If this is a very precious or pricey piece, I'd probably take it to a leather specialist dry cleaner; otherwise, Nature's Miracle worked well for me.
posted by mostlymartha at 2:32 PM on October 26, 2009

When our cat peed on my beloved leather jacket, I just cleaned it off and let it air out for a few days. The smell was still there, but I couldn't bring myself to throw it out, so I just left it hanging. Not sure why I did that, I guess I was in the denial stage of my grief.

Anyway, 6 months later the smell was barely detectable, even with your nose pressed up against the jacket, and a year later it was totally gone!

The moral of this story? Pretending that a problem doesn't exist makes it go away.
posted by AlsoMike at 6:05 PM on October 26, 2009

Cat pee on leather? If it doesn't involve solvent-accelerated fire in a 55 gallon drum, it won't work.
posted by bz at 9:20 PM on October 26, 2009

My cat peed on a leather bag (thin, soft, brown leather with a silky lining) and I immediately flushed it with water for 10 minutes, then rinsed well and let dry. Once it was dry, it didn't smell at all. The cat is a spayed female and it was pee, not "spray", and I had the thing in water within minutes of the peeing. Sometimes cats sniff my bag with added interest, but to human noses there is no smell or stain. So it's not always a death sentence for the leather item.
posted by twistofrhyme at 9:56 PM on October 26, 2009

« Older Wag more bark less baffles me.   |   Who would you see at The Fest 8? (Punk/Ska music... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.