How to Wash a Smelly Dog Bed

A Bichon Frisé on a round dog bed in a darkened room
Dog beds give your dogs a comfortable place to sleep and provide a great alternative to sleeping in your bed! However, just like your own bed, dog beds have to be maintained. If not maintained properly, dog beds can create quite the odor! In this blog, we will cover how to clean a dog bed.

Can You Wash a Dog Bed?

Thankfully, the answer to this question is a resounding “yes!” And washing your dog bed is an important regular cleaning task. Most dog beds have a removable cover, making cleaning simple. But even beds without a cover can be vacuumed and spot cleaned.

How to Clean a Dog Bed

  1. Vacuum the bed. Vacuuming your dog’s bed helps to remove dog hair, dirt, and other debris. (If any hairs have been missed, try rolling a lint roller over the bed.) It is very important to get as much dog hair as possible off the bed before washing. Dog hair sticks to wet fabric, so removing hair prior to washing is highly recommended. For best results, try using a vacuum hose and an upholstery attachment. Although your focus should be mainly on the sleeping surface, don’t forget to remove dust and fur from the cover. Try vacuuming the bed between washings to keep it cleaner longer.
  2. Remove and wash the bed cover. Most dog beds have removable covers. (This makes the cleaning process easier!) If the dog bed cover isn’t removable, check the washing instructions. If your dog bed cover is removable, you want to start by removing the cover completely. Load the fabric cover into the washing machine. Wash separately from other laundry. Wash bed covers on a large load setting with cold water. Make sure to use a pet-safe laundry detergent to not irritate your dog’s skin. The fabric cover can be washed more frequently if needed.
  3. Use stain remover. Washing the dog bed may not remove all the stains from the dog bed cover. If there are urine or poop stains, mud, or other deep stains, spray the bed with a stain remover before washing. You should also wash the dog bed in the washing machine. If the dog bed is too large, you can take it to the laundromat to be washed. Load the dog bed cover or the entire bed into a front-load washing machine and wash it in hot water to kill any insects and eggs that may be on the bed. Again, be sure to use a pet-safe laundry detergent to not irritate your dog’s skin. If your dog bed is too large to be washed in a washing machine, you can hand wash it in a bathtub using hot water and pet-safe detergent.
  4. Dry the bed. You can dry your dog bed and cover in your dryer. Tumble dry for about 20 minutes and air fluff the dog bed with a pet-safe dryer sheet to reduce static. This helps separate any remaining pet fur from the bed and avoid shrinking. You can also let dog beds and removable covers air dry. Hang the bedding in a well-ventilated area to dry to prevent mildew and mold from growing.

How to Wash a Dog Bed with Stuffing

Almost all stuffed dog beds will have a removable cover, making cleaning the dog bed as easy as removing and washing the cover in your washing machine. If your stuffed dog bed doesn’t have a cover, consult the tag to check if the entire thing can go into the washing machine.

Get Cleaning Help from Molly Maid

Washing your smelly dog bed will only neutralize the pet odor if your home is just as clean. Molly Maid’s cleaning service will ensure a fresh-smelling home. Request an estimate from your local Molly Maid or call us today!

What ways do you clean your dog bed? Let us know in the comment section below! Molly Maid is a Neighborly company — check out our fellow home repair, maintenance and enhancement service providers.