As much as we love our cats, sometimes they do things that really get us fuming—like peeing in our expensive leather shoes. Why couldn’t they have picked something else, anything else? We’ll never know. We just have to get down to the base of the problem and solve it.

So, if your cat oh-so-generously relieved themselves on your favorite boots, let’s quickly get to work. While you can likely save your boots, in some cases, you can’t ever quite get the smell out and maintain the integrity of your leather simultaneously.

Quick Review on Leather: What’s Safe?

Leather can come in many textures and durability can vary depending on many factors. But there are tons of leather-safe cleaners as well as those you can make right out of your medicine cabinet at home.

However, leather can be a temperamental fabric. Sometimes, you shouldn’t get the fabric wet, as it can cause the leather to shrink.

Commercial Cleaners

Commercial cleaners are designed just for leather, so you can ensure you’re getting the right kind of formula. However, some chemicals are pretty harsh, and not all are pet-safe. Make sure you read all labels before applying.

You can find options on sites like Chewy. Remember to read reviews, too!

Image Credit: Piqsels

Natural Solutions

Natural solutions are simple concoctions you can whip up at home—but they are very effective. It tends to be a lot cheaper than commercial options, but caution is advised.

Leather, depending on how it was treated, can be a very delicate material. So, make sure that you never use anything on them that could discolor the leather or make the issue worse.

Fresh Urine on Leather Boots

If you found the urine when it just happened, you might get very lucky. The quicker you can find the urine, the better. The idea is to use as little moisture as possible to protect the integrity of the leather.

Here’s what you will need:

  • White vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • Clean spray bottle
  • Towel or absorbent cloth

Let’s get started!

The 11 Simple Steps for Getting Cat Urine Out of Leather Boots

1. Take a towel or absorbent cloth and soak up as much of the urine as possible, if possible.

2. Mix up a concoction of one part vinegar, one part water.

3. Add a teaspoon of baking soda to remove the odor.

4. Pour the mixture into your spray bottle.

5. Shake the spray bottle vigorously to mix the components.

6. Lightly mist the affected area. Be careful not to over-saturate.

7. Allow the vinegar baking soda to sit for 15 minutes.

8. Gently blot off the mixture.

9. Take a fresh damp cloth and gently remove the mixture fully.

10. Allow the boots to dry.

11. If the boots still smell of urine, repeat.


*Additional Tip: If you need extra cleaning power, you can add a few drops of lemon juice to your mixture to help take care of both odors and stains.

It’s Not Always Possible to Save Leather Boots

If the urine is dry, you might have to rely on something more potent, like a chemical-based commercial cleaner designed for the task.

If you try another method, like hydrogen peroxide, it might work, but it also risks discoloring the leather. But if you choose to take these measures, make sure to test an inconspicuous part of your leather to see if it keeps its shade without fading.

Cat Spray vs. Cat Urine

Cat spraying is usually less volume than urinating, coming in small sprays. While there might be less to clean up, it is even more potent smelling than urine. Both are ways for cats to communicate and mark territory.

Cat spray contains all sorts of messages—telling other males to back off, telling potential mates they are ready for a partner.

Spraying can be prevented if you spay or neuter a cat before they reach the age of sexual maturity around six months of age. If a cat starts marking, there’s no guarantee that it will stop after the surgery.

If you suspect your cat is spraying, there are certain deterrents you can buy or make yourself that could stop the problem.



You can save those shoes you love so much. Leather is a fantastic material that lasts for years. With the proper steps, you can eliminate any nasty odors related to pungent cat urine once and for all.

Our hearts go out to you if you can’t save your leather boots. Cat urine is extremely strong, but with the proper enzymatic formula, you should be able to make your favorites wearable again.

Featured Image Credit: Tatyana Vyc, Shutterstock