Best Enzyme Cleaner for Cat Urine (Top 5 Reviews & Buying Guide)

By Debbie Short     Last Updated January 18, 2022

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Nearly every cat owner will run into a problem with cat urine soaking into their carpeting due to accidents or marking, and this can create a smelly problem with strong odors. The best enzyme cleaner for cat urine can effectively remove the ammonia crystals that cause that strong cat pee scent.

It can be very difficult to find a good enzymatic cleaner that does the job without leaving behind a chemical smell, and there are hundreds of different brands to choose between. This is why we rounded up the top five enzymatic cleaners and reviewed them, and we're also going to give you a short buying guide.

Our Top Picks for the Best Enzyme Cleaner for Cat Urine

Why is Cat Urine So Difficult to Remove?

Cat waiting for cat urine to be removed from carpet

Cat urine has a unique makeup that makes it exceedingly difficult to remove from carpet or fabrics, much to every cat owner's dismay. Bacteria, urea, ammonia, and other substances give cat urine that distinctively strong odor that sinks into your carpet all of the ways through to the padding.

If you're struggling with getting rid of the smell of cat urine, you need a specialized cleaner to destroy all of the substances in the cat's urine to get rid of the smell. This is where an enzymatic cleaner comes in, and there are dozens to choose from when you start to shop.

Enzymatic Cleaner vs. Oxidizing Cleaner

One of the most popular types of cleaner for stubborn cat urine stains is the enzymatic cleaner. But, how does this cleaner compare to an oxidizing cleaner?

Enzymatic Cleaner
Cat urine contains uric acid, and this acid has strong bonds that cling tightly to whatever it should come into contact with, like carpet or fabric fibers. You can't remove it with baking soda, vinegar, soap, or peroxide because they don't break down the odor-releasing uric acid.

The uric acid will linger and continue to produce a lingering ammonia odor, and it takes an enzymatic cleaner to break down the uric acid's bonds. Enzymatic cleaners contain a type of bacteria that breaks down the uric acid bonds on contact, and then you can clean the rest of the urine stain like normal.

Oxidizing Cleaner
The second type of cleaner that is popular with cat urine stains is an oxidizing cleaner that uses oxidation to try and remove the urine stains and uric acid from carpeting. However, the oxidation does not break down the uric acid bonds, and this means that it's relatively ineffective for treating the ammonia odors.

It's useful if you only have very light stains that your cat doesn't come back to time and time again. For more set-in stains, you'll need an enzymatic cleaner to get rid of the stains and the odors effectively.

How to Use an Enzymatic Cleaner to Get Rid of Cat Urine Stains and Smells

If you've never used an enzymatic cleaner before, you may be surprised at the cleaning process itself. Enzymatic cleaners take time to work, and most of them recommend that you let the cleaner sit on the stain for hours before you clean it up.

Step One - Find Places Your Cat Urinates
Depending on how old the stain is, finding the exact areas where your cat urinated can be difficult. You can follow your eyes and nose to find the biggest spots, but you may want to use a black light to make sure you get all of the spots. Mark them once you find them.

Step Two - Blot up Any Wet Areas
If the stains are fresh and wet, you want to use a clean towel to blot up as much of the spots possible until you get it as dry as you can. This may take a few paper towels or rags, and you should put weight on them to pull out as much moisture as possible.

Step Three - Soak the Area
You want to soak the area or areas with the enzymatic cleaner, and you should put enough on that it sinks into your carpet to the padding layer. Drench the area several inches around the actual stain, and cover the area, so your cat doesn't come back and pee in the same spot while the cleaner goes to work.

Step Four - Let it Sit
Time is the key with an enzymatic cleaner, and you want to let it sit on the stained area for at least 10 to 15 minutes. If it's possible, let it sit several hours or even overnight to start breaking down the uric acid bonds and removing the odor.

Step Five - Air Dry
After the initial period, let the area air dry because this allows the cleaner to continue working until it dries out completely. If the odor is still there after one application, apply a second coat, and repeat the process again.

3 Things to Consider When Buying an Enzyme Cleaner

There are a few things you want to keep in mind when you're buying an enzymatic cleaner. They include:

  • Concentration - How concentrated is your cleaner? If you don't pay attention to the application instructions, you could end up with an overpowering odor or bleached carpet and fabrics.
  • Effectiveness - Take a look at the reviews of each product and keep an eye on the effectiveness. You want something that works with one or two applications at a maximum. It should also completely get rid of the odor.
  • Safety - The Carpet and Rug Institute certifies enzymatic cleaners for safety. This will ensure it's safe to use around your pets and family.

Our Top Five Picks for the Best Enzyme Cleaner for Cat Urine

1. Rocco & Roxie Professional Strength Stain & Odor Eliminator

Rocco & Roxie Professional Stain and Odor Remover

This cleaner removes cat and dog odors, stains, residue, feces, urine, vomit, and organic spills from deep within in the carpet and padding to eave you with a clean area that looks like new. The enzymatic cleaner contains activated and natural enzymatic bacteria.

These bacteria activate when they come into contact with biological spills and odors, and they begin feeding on the ammonia crystals in your cat's urine until they eliminate them completely. It's color-safe, certified safe fro all carpets, and chlorine-free, and this makes it safe to use around your children and pets.

The Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) gave this cleaner their stamp of approval, and you can easily use it on floors, carpets, clothing, furniture, kennels, litter boxes, carriers, and pet sleep areas. You'll get a 100% satisfaction guarantee every time you buy this product, and the company will refund your money if you're not happy.

Cat parents who bought this enzymatic cleaner liked that it came with a light and natural smell that lingered for days after they used it to clean their cat urine stains. They did note that this cleaner is slightly more expensive, and it takes up to 24 hours to work.

Things We Liked
  • Available in different sizes
  • Certified by the Carpet and Rug Institute as safe
  • Breaks down cat urine stains to the carpet padding
Things We Didn't Like
  • Slightly more expensive
  • Can take up to 24 hours to work from the initial application
  • Might take more than one treatment to completely lift the stain

2. Angry Orange Pet Odor Eliminator for Dog and Cat Urine

Angry Orange Pet Odor Eliminator

This enzymatic cleaner is a commercial-grade cleaning product that is extremely concentrated and makes up to a gallon of cleaning solution per bottle. It's safe, biodegradable, and non-toxic because the bulk of the formula comes from orange peel oil, and this acid helps break down the urine stains.

The strong citrus scent is pleasant and lingers in the fibers after you use it to clean the cat's urine. You can use this enzymatic cleaner on tile, carpets, kennels, yard surfaces, litter boxes, and furniture or anywhere you have methane and ammonia odors from bodily spills.

You'll get a powerful orange scent when you spray this cleaner, and it goes to work in minutes, breaking down the ammonia crystals in the cat urine. All you do is steam clean it or soak it up, let it dry completely, and the stains and odors should be gone with one or two applications.

Cat parents who bought this product were surprised at how little of this cleaner they needed to use to get a clean scent that lingered for days after they initially sprayed it. Cat parents were not happy that it could take multiple applications over the span of several days for stubborn urine stains.

Things We Liked
  • Has a lasting scent
  • Each bottle makes a gallon of cleaner
  • Easy to use and safe for multiple surfaces
Things We Didn't Like
  • May overwhelm you with smell if you don't dilute it properly
  • Might take several applications to work
  • Only use on color-safe fabrics

3. Sunny and Honey Pet Stain & Odor Miracle

Sunny and Honey Pet Stain Odor Miracle

Sunny and Honey's enzymatic cleaner comes in three scents that includes fall spice, spring mint, and fragrance free, and this cleaner works on cat urine, feces, vomit, and drool to effectively lift it out of the carpet. You can use this cleaner on car upholstery, carpet, crates, furniture, hardwood, leather, pet beds, and rugs without worrying about it damaging the fabric.

You'll get two sizes when you order this cleaner, and you can use it by itself or add it to your steam cleaner and use it that way without a problem. This product comes made in the United States, and 10% of the profits from every bottle sold gets donated to animal shelters and animal rescues.

There is no animal testing with this enzymatic cleaner, and you get a 60-day money-back guarantee if you're not completely satisfied with the results. It's also safe to use around your pets and animals without any negative effects.

People who purchased this cleaner for their cat urine liked that it came with a few different fragrance choices that included no smell. Cat parents did say that this cleaner was on the more expensive side for the amount you had to put on the stains to make them go away.

Things We Liked
  • Has a few scent choices
  • Comes in two different size choices
  • Uses no animal testing
Things We Didn't Like
  • The scented versions can be very overpowering
  • Slightly more expensive than other options
  • May not work well on heavily soiled areas

4. BUBBAS Super Strength Commercial Enzyme Cleaner

Bubba's Super Strength Commercial Enzyme Cleaner

You get either a 32-ounce bottle or a full gallon bottle when you purchase this enzymatic cleaner, and it comes scientifically formulated to permanently destroy pet enzyme odors and stains on area rugs, upholstery, flooring, and carpets. The formula has natural dormant bacteria that activate when they hit the ammonia crystals in your cat's urine to clean down to the carpet pad.

You can also use this cleaner to remove shoe odors, set-in stains on clothing, auto carpet stains, in your kitchen, laundry room, litter box, and bathroom without a problem. It comes certified by the Carpet and Rug Institute as being a powerful but safe formula to use around your family and pets.

This cleaner comes with a money-back guarantee, and they'll refund your purchase costs is you're not totally satisfied with how this enzymatic cleaner works on your cat urine stains. It works in just five minutes, and you can apply it directly to the stain or put it in your carpet scrubber.

People who purchased this cleaner to get rid of their cat urine stains liked that they could choose from two sizes, and they liked that the Carpet and Rug Institute certified it. People did not like that it had a strong chemical scent associated with it that lingered for days.

Things We Liked
  • Comes in two sizes
  • Has a quick working process
  • Certified by the Carpet and Rug Institute as effective and safe
Things We Didn't Like
  • Has a strong scent that lingers
  • Might not prevent marking again
  • Might need more than one application

5. Emmy's Best Powerful Pet Odor Remover Enzymatic Carpet Cleaner

Emmy's Best Pet Odor and Urine Eliminator

This cleaner features a triple action formula that comes designed erase urine, feces, organic odors, feces and other stains while neutralizing the odors that can cause repeat soiling. This cleaner sinks down to the padding layer of your carpet to soak and destroy and lingering ammonia crystals.

There is a light lavender scent that lingers in the air after you clean with it, and you can either apply it directly to the stained area or dilute it and put it in your carpet scrubber. You can use this cleaner on carpets, upholstery, tile, wood flooring, concrete, litter boxes, garbage cans, and laundry baskets without worrying about damaging the fabric.

It's easy to use this enzymatic cleaner, and you can soak it up with a white cloth after 10 to 15 minutes of it sitting on the stains and starting to break them down. For best results, let the cleaner sit overnight on the stains before soaking it up because this allows it to reach the padding.

People who bought this product to get rid of the cat urine stains in their homes liked that it came with a light lavender scent that could calm their cats and prevent re-marking in the same area. They did say that the cleaner worked best after it sat for hours, and this made it time-consuming.

Things We Liked
  • Comes with a light lavender scent
  • Has two size options available
  • Safe to use around your pets and kids
Things We Didn't Like
  • Can take hours to work properly
  • Might have to treat two or three times
  • More expensive for the amount you get

What's the Best Enzymatic Cleaner for Cat Urine?

Our pick for the best enzymatic cleaner for cat urine is Rocco & Roxie Professional Strength Stain & Odor Eliminator because it's able to get rid of odors, stains, residue, feces, urine, vomit, and organic spills in your carpet and the padding. The natural enzymatic bacteria activates when it hits the ammonia crystals, so it doesn't waste any.

We also chose it because it came color-certified and safe to use on all carpet materials without worrying about bleaching or dying it. Finally, the 100% guarantee with full refund opportunities was a nice touch for anyone who wanted to try it.