Home » How To Clean Up Cat Vomit From Hardwood? (Step By Step Guide)

How To Clean Up Cat Vomit From Hardwood? (Step By Step Guide)

If you have hardwood floors, you are likely aware of how delicate they are and how careful you must clean the surface. This can pose a severe problem when you have cats because, like all pets, they sometimes leave their bodily fluids in places you would rather them not.

Luckily, there are a few ways to clean messes left behind by your furry friends without damaging your precious floors. In this article, we will tell you how to clean up cat vomit from hardwood flooring and prevent odors and stains that could be left behind.

Tools You’ll Need

  • Paper Towels
  • Vinegar
  • Kitty Litter
  • Baking Soda
  • Dish Soap
  • Hardwood floor cleaner

How To Clean Up Cat Vomit From Hardwood

When cleaning hardwood flooring, there are precautions you must take. Hardwood flooring can easily be damaged by certain cleaners, like bleach or other all-purpose cleaners, because they can destroy the finish.

However, if done correctly, you can clean up messes quickly and easily without damaging your floors. So, if you are a proud cat owner and want to know how to clean up after them and still be able to keep your beautiful flooring intact, you are in the right place!

Here are a few tips and tricks to clean up cat vomit off your hardwood floors!

Step 1: Absorb The Liquid

Absorb The Liquid

The first step to cleaning up cat vomit is to soak it up. You can soak up the vomit a couple of different ways, depending on what you have on hand.

Paper Towels or Rags

Using paper towels is the best and easiest option. Simply lay the paper towel over the vomit and blot it, so the cloth absorbs all of the liquid.

You could also use a rag to accomplish this; however, you will need to wash the rag in an odor-eliminating laundry detergent to rid it of smells unless you are ok with tossing it when you are done.

Make sure you don’t just wipe it up, as this can push the vomit around, and it will seep into the cracks of your flooring and be almost impossible to remove. If there are chunks in the vomit, you will want to scoop these up after the liquid is absorbed.

Kitty Litter

If you are out of paper towels or prefer not to use them, you can also use kitty litter. Kitty litter is very absorbing and will soak up the liquid.

Just pour a small amount of clean litter over the vomit and let it sit for 5-10 minutes, depending on the amount of vomit. Once the vomit is soaked up, simply sweep it up into a dustpan and throw it away. You could also use a vacuum for this if you prefer.

Step 2: Clean Your Floor

Clean Your Floor

After the vomit is absorbed, it is time to clean up what is left behind. Here are a few methods you can use to clean up the vomit residue.

While these methods should be safe on your hardwood floors, I recommend testing them in a small, inconspicuous area before committing to them.

Hardwood floor cleaner

Cleaners made specifically for hardwood floors are your best route when cleaning up any kind of vomit or other messes off your floors. You can use any hardwood floor cleaner. However, I recommend using a hardwood floor cleaner specifically made for pets, such as a pet enzyme cleaner.

You can find pet enzyme cleaners at any pet store and most general merchandise stores. Just make sure the label says it is safe to use on hardwood flooring, as some pet enzyme cleaners are not made for that.

The enzymes found in these specific pet cleaners help to eliminate pet stains and odors that may be left behind after your pet vomits on the surface.

Dish Soap

If you don’t have a cleaner on hand that is suitable for hardwood flooring, you can try dish soap. Most dish soaps are gentle enough that they will not tarnish the finishing on your floors.

Just wet a sponge or paper towel and squirt a pea-sized amount of dish soap on the affected area. Gently scrub the area, then use a dry rag or paper towel to dry the surface.


Vinegar is a great natural cleaning agent, and while full-strength vinegar will damage your floors, diluted vinegar is perfectly safe. Vinegar will also help prevent odors from the vomit from lingering on the surface and smelling up your home.

I recommend diluting a 1/2 cup of vinegar with a quart of water in a spray bottle. Now, just lightly spray the area and let it sit for around 10 minutes. After it has sat for 10 minutes, just wipe the area thoroughly, and you are done.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Another natural option is hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide is a good option as it will help prevent the vomit from staining your floor and help to remove a stain that has already begun to set in.

There’s no need to dilute the hydrogen peroxide first. You can put it in a spray bottle and spray it on the area, or pour it onto a clean rag or paper towel and clean up the residue. I recommend allowing peroxide to sit for around 10 minutes if you are trying to remove a stain.

Baking Soda

Although it isn’t an option to clean the vomit mess, you can use baking soda after the has been cleaned to remove any leftover vomit stains and odors. To use baking soda, simply mix the baking soda with water to form a thin paste.

You don’t want it to be thick as this could scratch the surface of your floors. Apply the baking soda mixture generously over the stain. Cover it with a paper towel and let it sit for a few hours, up to overnight.

When it has had ample time to work its magic, just sweep it up and clean the residue with a wet sponge or paper towel.


Although hardwood floor is delicate, you can easily clean up cat vomit from them without causing them harm. Just remember to test any of the options mentioned above on a small area. We hope you found this article helpful!

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