A smiling beagle sitting in a gray dog bed

Tips for Cleaning Your Dog Beds

How to Clean Your Dog Beds

If you’re like most people who’ve chosen to share your heart and home with a canine companion, you undoubtedly want your new household resident to be comfortable, healthy, and happy. You’ve probably already stocked up on all the necessities and some of the frills involved in owning a dog, such as food, odor-removing dog shampoo, treats, and toys as well as purchased a bed to provide your new friend with its own place to sleep. You probably also want to keep your home clean and smelling fresh despite there being a dog in residence — after all, you’ve probably visited at least one home where your nose told you immediately that there was a dog nearby. 

One of the most important things you can do to maintain a home that doesn’t smell like your dog is to regularly clean your pet’s bed. Here’s what you need to know about cleaning a dog bed. 

Ways to Clean Dog Bed Without Washing

It isn’t always possible to simply toss your dog’s bed into the washing machine, so it’s essential to know how to keep it clean between washings. Puppies in particular tend to be messy and sloppy in their eagerness to play and otherwise explore the miracle of life, and if you’ve decided to adopt an older dog, incontinence may be part of the picture. Cleaning dog beds of urine between washings may be necessary to keep your home interior smelling nice and clean. 

Vacuum Your Dog Bed

Vacuuming your dog bed on a regular basis is essential for keeping the space clean and minimizing odors. Vacuuming removes stray hairs, dirt and dust that may have come in from the outdoors on the dog’s coat, and pet dander. How often you will need to vacuum depends on your dog — some breeds tend to shed far less than others, and dogs that tend seasonally tend to do so only during spring and autumn. 

For small breeds that don’t shed much, you can probably get away with using a hand-held vacuum once or twice a week. If you have a dog with lots of fur that sheds a lot, there are specialty vacuums just for pet owners that you can purchase. During shedding season, you may have to vacuum once per day to keep your home pristine. However, you’ll be glad that you did — trying to clean up a buildup of pet hair, dander, and dust is much more difficult than doing a quick clean each day. 

Remove Any Stains

One of the reasons odors, dog hair, and assorted debris tend to build up in pet areas, including dog beds, is that people put off doing a full clean because they’re short on time. It doesn’t have to be this way, though — spot cleaning works wonders to keep pet beds fresh until you have time to thoroughly clean them. Inspect the bed carefully for any buildup of odor-causing materials, carefully spot-clean them, and allow the item to dry. Consider placing dog beds and blankets outdoors to dry after spot cleaning them. Not only will they dry more quickly, but they’ll also develop that nice, sunshine-fresh scent that comes with drying fabric outdoors. 

Spray Your Dog Bed With an Odor Eliminator

Once you’ve finished spot-cleaning your dog’s bed and allowed it to thoroughly dry, you may notice that it still has some residual odors. If this is the case, use Fresh Wave Odor Removing Spray for a final layer of protection against unpleasant smells between washings. Fresh Wave comes in pleasant scents such as Orange and Lemon that won’t overwhelm your indoor living space. This spray can also be used on your dog’s blanket, and if you allow your pet to sleep on your household furniture, Fresh wave also helps keep your upholstered chairs and sofas from smelling like a dog lives there. 

Tips for Cleaning Your Dog Bed

The type of dog bed that you buy will make all the difference in how you clean it. Here’s what you need to know: 

Cleaning Dog Beds with Removable Covers

Highly recommended for those with new puppies, dog beds with removable covers are probably the most convenient when it comes to keeping them clean. Cleaning these typically involves removing the cover and running it through your household washing machine. Be sure to use the hot setting to help remove odors and to add a little Fresh Wave Odor Eliminating Laundry Booster to the wash cycle. If the bed is soiled, doing some spot cleaning before putting it in your washing machine will yield the cleanest results. You can either toss it in the dryer or take it outdoors to dry for that sunshine-fresh scent. 

Cleaning Hand-Washable Dog Beds

Cleaning a dog bed that needs to be hand-washed takes a bit more effort. Usually, this type of bed is reserved for small or toy breeds. Thoroughly vacuum the bed first to remove dog hair, dander, and assorted debris and fill the sink with warm, soapy water and add a half cup to a cup of white vinegar to help eliminate odors. If the dog bed is too large to fit into a standard sink, you may have to use the bathtub, or, in a pinch, your children’s backyard wading pool. 

Gently knead and squeeze the bed until you’ve removed all traces of loose fur, dirt, and grime and rinse until the water runs clear. Wring it out as much as you can to remove excess water, but be careful not to wring it so hard that it loses its shape. Place it flat to dry. Direct sunlight is best for drying disposable dog beds, but if the weather isn’t cooperating, find a flat surface indoors where it can air dry undisturbed. 

No matter what kind of dog you have or what type of dog bed you choose to buy, odors and messes are simply a part of pet ownership. The Fresh Waves line of pet odor eliminator products helps keep this part to a minimum, so don’t hesitate to pick some up today.