How to Wash a Dog Bed

Dogs may love getting their paws dirty, but most pet parents feel differently—especially when the mess gets tracked inside. Want to help your furry friend stay clean?

If you’ve never washed dog bedding before, there are a few laundry methods to be aware of. Let’s get you up to speed on how to wash a dog bed safely.

1. Prepping Your Dog Bed

To effectively clean a dog bed, there are a few steps to take before washing:

  1. For smelly dog beds, sprinkle a layer of baking soda and let it soak up the smell for at least an hour.

  2. Remove excess fur from the surface of the dog bed. Try using both a vacuum and a good hand-shaking session outside. This should also get rid of any extra baking soda.

  3. Treat any stains with a mild detergent or stain remover.

Any hair or stains left on the dog bed will cling and stick to the fabric during a wash cycle. Removing them pre-wash is essential!

2. Dog Bed Machine and Hand-Washing Methods

Now that you’re ready for washing, start by assessing whether your dog’s bed has a removable cover. If the cover is removable and the label lists machine washing as a safe method, you’re in luck!

  1. Simply toss the cover in a machine, select the highest temperature, and use a gentle, pet-safe detergent.

  2. Because pets are sensitive to soaps, we recommend washing it a second time with just water.

  3. Put it in the dryer at low heat without dryer sheets.

Unfortunately, the dog bed itself and beds without a removable will need to be washed by hand and here is how:

  1. Fill a bathtub or wash basin with warm water.

  2. Submerge the dog bed, then add a pet-safe detergent.

  3. Soak the bed for at least 10 minutes while gently swishing it back and forth.

  4. For especially soiled beds, go in with a baking soda and scrub brush or toothbrush.

  5. Rinse the dog bed until the water runs clear and free of suds.

If you’re hesitant about using your usual detergent, you can always make your own concoction!

How to Dry a Wet Dog Bed

A low-heat dryer cycle works well for a dog bed cover, but the fluffy part of the bed should be air-dried on a drying rack.

Make sure to leave it in a sunny spot, and spread it out for even drying. Be sure to check on it every few hours and flip it over as needed.

If the weather is in your favor, it can also be hung over a strong clothing line. This method is also great for dog beds with a lingering odor.

Once you learn how to wash a dog bed, your furry friend is sure to thank you with extra snuggles and tail wags!

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