Out Spot's Damn Spot

By Nicole Duncan

Tail between his legs, and shamefully cowering in the corner, your pup’s eyes convey his apologies and embarrassment about his accident. Oops. You give him a reassuring scratch on the head and let him outside while you clean up his mess. But the cleaner you are about to use is most likely packed with harsh chemicals such as sodium hypochlorite or bleach, not to mention the entire hormone-disrupting glycol ether family. Most pet-stain removers rely on petroleum-based surfactants—the harsh cleansing agents that separate and lift the nasty remnants from your carpet. Specifically avoid diethylene glycol, nonylphenol ethoxylate, and butyl cellosolve.

Protect your four-legged loved one from carcinogens, hormone disruptors, and skin irritants by using our favorite natural spot and odor removers to attack urine, vomit, and poop.

Earth Friendly Products Natumate Stain & Odor Remover ($5.99, 22 oz; www.ecos.com) cleans with a fresh, lemon scent and is free of chlorine, sodium lauryl sulfate, and petroleum-based surfactants.

Earth Friendly Products Powdered Pick-up Sponge ($5, 8.75 oz; www.ecos.com) transforms tough-to-clean liquid messes into solids with its absorbent sawdust and ground corncobs.

Biokleen Bac-Out Stain & Odor Eliminator ($8.50, 32 oz; www.biokleenhome.com) not only masks odors, it actually eliminates them with the natural cleansing power of citrus lime.