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How often should I wash my dog’s bed?

Approx. 3 minutes read

Dog beds are one of the few items in a dog’s life that might only get replaced once or twice, so it’s important to take proper care of your dog’s bed. Keeping it nice and clean means maintaining a healthy bed for your pooch and ensuring the bed maintains its structural support and cosy feel. So when it comes to washing your dog’s bed, how often should you do it?

Hygienically speaking…

An unwashed dog bed eventually begins to smell bad. This is because your furry pup sheds on it, sweats on it, steps on it, and also eventually compacts the mattress. Bacteria get into the cover and into the bed itself, so it’s important to keep a handle on cleanliness and wash your dog’s bed at least as often as you bath your dog. If Snuggles gets a wash and groom every week, then wash the bed every week. If he’s more of a monthly kind of dog, then wash his bed every couple of weeks.

If a machine wash (we’ll get to this in a mo’) feels like too much to do on a fortnightly basis, then at the very least give your dog’s bed some regular care in between machine washes.

Dog bed care routine

Whether your dog sheds fur, flea eggs, tapeworm eggs or any other microscropic passengers onto his bed, those little critters will need to be cleaned up ASAP. You can’t see them, so just assume they’re there. The first port of call is to brush your dog’s bed/bed cover daily. Take his bed outside and give it a quick once-over with a dustpan brush.

Machine wash

If your dog’s bed has a removable cover, just whip it off and give it a good shake. Every two weeks, after you’ve shaken it out, pop the cover in the washing machine with a gentle (dog-friendly) detergent and give it a wash. Check the care label on the dog bed itself to determine the temperature at which the cover can be washed. If the dog bed itself is machine washable, then follow the same steps above.

Spot clean

If your dog’s bed isn’t machine washable, now would be a good time to vacuum it. Attach the upholstery nozzle and give the bed a good, deep vacuum. If there are any dirty marks on the bed inner/mattress, give it a spot clean with a cloth or sponge and leave it in the sun to dry.

Sun clean

Most dog beds with removable covers have a waterproof cover on the mattress/inner itself. While this helps to keep the inner fibres clean, your dog’s use of the mattress will eventually compress the inner material and make it less puffy and a little hard. Fortunately, leaving the mattress/inner in the sunshine will help to puff it up once more, but it helps to do this regularly from the time you first get the dog bed. Flip it over as you would your own mattress – this will extend its life and keep your pup comfy for years to come.

The secret is in the purchase

The easiest way to easily clean a dog bed is to get a dog bed that’s easy to clean. Fortunately, the dog care market gives dog pawrents plenty of choice in terms of dog beds, so you can choose one with the most convenient features for your lifestyle. Find a bed that suits your pampered little princess or your ruff-and-tumble outdoorsy pal. The more adventurous the dog, the more durable the dog bed should be.

Look for specifications that include things like ‘removable cover’, ‘machine washable’ and/or ‘reversible’. Some manufacturers will also specify whether the dog bed is specially made for indoor or outdoor use. If you find a dog bed your furry friend will like, but it doesn’t have a removable cover or isn’t machine washable, then you can easily improvise by buying an extra blanket to use as a dog bed cover, or simply commit to frequently spot cleaning… and Spot cleaning!

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