A Guide on How to Clean Your Dog’s Bed

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As humans, ​it’s long been taught that we should try to change our bed sheets once a week. What about our four-legged friends and their beds? While they might not have sheets to change, their bed needs a scheduled cleaning of its own. When you want to know how to clean a dog bed, here are the different ways you can keep ​it as clean as your own.

​How to Clean a Dog Bed

Dogs shed, get dirty from being outside, and often take food into their pet bed. These factors create a dirty environment for bacteria to thrive and grow in. Depending on how much your dog sheds, you may want to wash the dog bed twice a week.

When you skip washes, the pet hair, dander, and dirt can build up. This makes it difficult for your washer to remove it all. Using a weekly or twice a week schedule helps remove the debris before it builds up too much.

Dog bed cleaning washing dog bed

​Quick Clean

For a quick clean of your dog’s bed, run your vacuum over it. The best way is to use an attachment, such as an extender wand, on the bed and run it over in even lines. This way you can see where you have vacuumed and where you still need to vacuum.

Vacuuming can remove unhatched flea eggs, hair, small insects, and pet dander. Make sure you take time to maneuver the bed around and vacuum in the corners. They are the perfect pocket areas for hair and dirt to accumulate.

Certain vacuums are specially designed for pet hair. These have added suction power and special filtration systems. While they can be more expensive, they can also save you a lot of headache.

You should vacuum in-between weekly washes to help control the hair and dander, especially during shedding season.

​How to Wash a Dog Bed

If you ask if you can wash a dog bed, you first need to consider the size of the dog bed versus the size of your washer. If you are dealing with a large dog bed that doesn’t have a removable cover, then you can easily wash the dog bed in your bath tub.

  1. Spot clean your pet’s bed before you wash it​.
  2. Then, put it into the washer.
  3. If there are any stains or dirty looking areas, you will want to spray those with ​the ​TriNova Natural Pet Stain and Odor Remover Eliminator. This will go to work on the stain before you begin washing.
  4. ​Adhere to the directions on the bottle and then toss your dog bed or dog bed cover into the washer. Make sure you are ​avoiding using detergents and bleaches that are harmful to your dog​. If you are unsure about your current detergent, you can check out some pet safe cleaners at your local pet shop.
  5. When the washer is finished, look over your dog bed to make sure the dirt and hair has been removed. If the dog bed is really dirty, you may want to run it through the washer a second time.
  6. Dry the bed completely in the dryer. If your dog bed is too large, put it outside in the warm sun. Make sure the dog bed is fully dry. That way mold will not develop.
Cleaning a dirty dog bed

To extend the life of your pet’s bed between washings, you can lay a blanket over the bed to protect it. This way you only need to wash the blanket instead of the entire bed. You can also spritz the pet bed with a vinegar-based, odor eliminating, pet safe mixture.

​How to Wash a Dog Bed with Urine

If your puppy has an accident on the bed, you can get it out and restore its freshness with a few extra steps.  Spray the area with a stain-fighting product or make your own ​vinegar-based cleaner at home​.

  1. You will want to blot up as much of the pee as you can.
  2. Spray the area with a stain-fighting product or make your own ​vinegar-based cleaner at home​
  3. ​When you wash the bed, make sure you use hot water. Using hot water will kill the bacteria, germs, insects, and flea eggs hiding in your dog’s bed.
  4. Use the same drying instructions as earlier stated. Your pet can enjoy their clean bed again.

Knowing how to clean dog beds when urine is involved will save you from dealing with the potent smell and will kill the bacteria that can make you or your dog sick.

Consider chemical free steam cleaning: ​Certain brands make steam cleaners that don’t use chemicals, which have several benefits. ​The SteamMachine uses nothing but distilled water, making it much more safe for a pet to be around. Secondly, as mentioned above, some dog beds can be too big and cumbersome to throw in the washing machine, which makes using steam a great alternative!

​How to Clean Dog Urine from Carpet

When your pet doesn’t make it outside to go potty and instead uses your carpet, it is important to know how to clean urine from carpet. The quicker you can get to the stain and clean it, the better the overall results are.

dog on dog bed resting dirty bed
  1. The first step is to blot up as much of the pee as possible. Use a rag or an absorbent paper towel. Do not rub the area as this will spread the urine further from the original spot.
  2. Next you will want to use a pet-safe cleaner. ​It is important to use pet-safe cleaners​ on carpets and other areas in your home because your pets sit, lay, and run around these areas. Even the fumes after the chemical has been used and dried can come back to harm your pet’s lungs or agitate their skin.
  3. ​Spray your preferred cleaner on the carpet and let it sit for five to ten minutes.​ Blot the cleaner up with a rag that has been dipped in warm water. This will flush out the cleaner.
  4. ​Use a clean dry rag or paper towels to finish blotting up the moisture. It is important to get up as much of the moisture as you can. If water is soaked through the carpet it can reach the carpet pad and soak down to the floor beneath. A dark covered and moisture-soaked area like this is the perfect breeding ground for mold.
  5. ​Let the carpet finish air drying and then vacuum over it to restore the texture. If you still have a stain in your carpet, you can try a few different stain-removing products.


Now that you have learned how to clean a dog bed in many different ways, you can make sure your pet knows the joy of sleeping in a freshly cleaned bed.

Lauren Moldvay is a freelance writer from Virginia and the mother of one (not always) sweet little girl. She specializes in trying to help others find easier ways to clean, manage the home and save money with DIY projects.