All Posts by Eloisa Thomas

How Much Food to Feed A Dog? The Complete Guide

How Much Food To Feed A Dog - A Puppy To Adult Canine Feeding Guide

Many new dog owners wonder how much food to feed a dog.

Depending on their size, age and activity level, your pup will need more or less food, several times a day. Unfortunately, your dog’s feeding needs depend on many factors and it isn’t possible to give a blanket answer that will work for everyone.

However, there are some simple guidelines you can follow to ensure your dog is getting enough food.


How Much Should I Feed My Dog?

If you’re wondering how much to feed a dog per day by weight, you’re in the right track. While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer, starting with their weight is usually your best option.

In general, the amount you need to feed a dog is related both to their age and their ideal weight. In all cases, you should try to offer your pup the best dog food adapted to their needs. High-quality dog food has all the nutrients your friend needs to stay healthy and happy.

"Your dog should eat according to their size, weight, activity level, age and the type of food you’re feeding them."

As a rule of thumb, dogs need about 1/3 cup of dry food per day for every 5 kilograms of weight. Keep in mind puppies could need 2x or even 3x as much, depending on the breed and age.

A good starting point is reading the label of your chosen food. Weigh your dog and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for a couple of days. If you see your dog leaves food on their bowl, or seems hungry even after eating, adjust the quantities as needed.

How much should you feed a small dog?

Toy and small dogs eat less food than their larger counterparts. If you have a chihuahua, shit tzu or Pekingese, these are considered “toy” or “mini” breeds. In contrast, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, small Poodles, Boston Terriers and French Bulldogs are all “small” dogs.

Here are some general guidelines on how much food you should give your small dog [1]:

  • Mini breeds under 1.5 kilograms need about 1/3 cup or 140 calories per day
  • Small dogs around 5 kilograms need around ¾ cup or 340 calories per day.
  • Dogs that are about 10 kilograms will need 1 ½ cup of dry food per day.

PRO TIP: Small and toy breed poppies are prone to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels). If left untreated, your puppy will show lethargy, weakness and even seizures. It’s very important you offer your small breed puppy several small meals a day to keep their sugar stable. When in doubt, offer a small energy-dense treat like a piece of fruit (bananas work well).

How much should you feed a large or giant dog?

Medium, large and giant dogs eat a lot of food. However, you should be careful and avoid overfeeding. Your pup will be much healthier if they stay at a healthy bodyweight. According to PetMD, here’s how much you should feed your dog:

  • Medium dogs, 15 kilograms: 1 ¾ cups of dry food per day, or around 780 calories.
  • Medium dogs, 25 kilograms: 2 ½ cups of dry food per day, or around 1100 calories.
  • Large dogs, 30 kilograms: 3 ½ cups of dry food, or around 1300 calories.
  • Giant breeds, 40 kilograms or more: 4 to 4 ½ cups of dry food per day, or around 1800 calories.

“Keep in mind your dog’s calorie needs may vary as much as 25% more or less than the recommended amount” – Jennifer Coates, DVM [1]

cute puppy eating

How Often Should You Feed A Dog?

In general, veterinarians recommend that adult dogs eat 2 meals a day. Larger and giant breeds that are prone to bloat do better eating several meals a day, so in that case a third meal might be the best option.

The amounts showed above are the total food and calories a dog should have per day. However, you can break that in as many meals as you’d like or as advised by your vet.

Of course, keep in mind that puppies eat more frequently than adult dogs.

PRO TIP: To keep messes at bay, place a plastic dog feeding mat to catch crumbs and debris. Your floors will thank you!


Should Large & Small Breeds Eat The Same Food?

Not really.

Large and small breeds have different metabolism and health needs. As such, high- quality dog food for their size offers proper nutrition adapted to those requirements.

Small breed dogs have a fast metabolism and need a diet that’s slightly high in calories. On top of that, small dogs have significantly smaller jaws and their kibble should fit their mouths. Just imagine having to eat food the size of a brussels sprout, all in one bite! That’s how a small dog feels when you offer “regular” kibble.

Large and small dog breeds have different metabolism and need specific food adapted to their energy needs.

On the other hand, large breed dogs tend to have joint issues and are more prone to bloat. As such, they need food with extra supplements (like glucosamine) and specific calcium levels. Large dog food is a little less energy dense than small-dog food, to fit the slower metabolism of large and giant breeds.

PRO TIP: Large breed puppies need to grow slowly to avoid calcium deficiency and ensure their joints stay strong as adults. When in doubt, it’s better to slightly underfeed a giant-breed puppy than offer too much food too soon. Talk to your veterinarian to adjust your puppy’s feeding schedule as needed.

rottweiler chihuahua and food bowl

How Much Should I Feed My Puppy?

Puppies grow fast and their feeding needs change daily. If you have the time, weighing your puppy every day will offer a good starting point to calculate how much food to offer. However, most owners don’t have the time or the proper scale to weigh their little ones.

When they’re very young, puppies should drink their mother’s milk freely. Once the mother starts weaning them, you can offer regular puppy food adapted to their adult size. Below you’ll find how much to feed a puppy based on weight, as advised by veterinarians:

Weight in Kg

Recomended Calories / day

Daily calorie needs of small breed puppies (based on adult weight)

2.5 or less

200

5

340

7

450

10 

460

Daily calorie needs of medium-sized puppies (based on adult weight)

15

750

20

1000

22

1100

Daily calorie needs of large and giant puppies (based on adult weight)

30

1300

40

1750

50

2000


How Often Should You Feed A Puppy?

Wondering whether or not is it ok to feed a puppy twice a day? Here are some general guidelines:

If you have a mama dog with puppies, you can start offering free-grazing puppy food as early as three weeks old [2]. If you feel your puppies are over eating, limit the free-grazing to a couple hours twice a day.

However, once they are weaned, or if you get a puppy that’s 2 months old or older, put food out at regular intervals. In general, four times a day is ideal.

PRO TIP: Stick to regular intervals when feeding puppies. If you’re feeding 4x per day, offer food every 6 hours. That probably means you’ll be feeding puppies late at night and early morning, but it will keep them properly fed and healthy.

When your puppy reaches 4 months old and are starting to teeth, they’ll do great eating 3 times a day. Then, once they’re 6 months old, you can switch them to an adult schedule and offer just 2 meals a day.


How Much Should I Feed A Dog With Specific Health Issues?

These recommendations are general guidelines aimed at healthy dogs. If your pup has other health issues like kidney or liver problems, obesity or gastritis, their meal schedule and food amounts will change.

“As long as the dog food is nutritionally complete and balanced and has the AAFCO [Association of American Feed Control Officials] guidelines on it, you'll be fine.” – Marty Becker, veterinarian at North Idaho Animal Hospital. [3]

In such cases, your best option is consulting with a trusted veterinarian. They will evaluate your dog and recommend a feeding plan suited to their needs.

PRO TIP: If your dog has special health needs, ask your vet about choosing food tailored to their needs instead of regular food. Nowadays you can find specialty foods created to fit weight-loss plans, sensitive stomachs and even low-sodium diets.


FAQ

Should large and small puppies eat the same food? What’s the difference between small and large dog food?

While small breed and large breed puppies can eat the same food, it’s best if they don’t. The difference between small and large dog food goes beyond the size of the kibble.

In fact, small breed dog food is more energy dense created to fuel their fast metabolism. On the other hand, large breed dogs have a slower metabolism and need food with a lower calorie count. If you don’t offer the right food and amounts, your small puppy can be underfed or your large pup will grow too fast.

Offering your dog high-quality food adapted to their size and metabolism is the best way to ensure a healthy life further down the road.

Can puppies and adult dogs eat the same food?

No.

Puppies are growing, and because of that they usually need a calorie-dense diet. If you feed that same food to an adult dog, they will probably gain weight.

In addition, puppies also need more calcium than adult dogs. As such, puppy food has specific nutrients (like calcium and vitamin D) to support the growing body of a normal puppy. In contrast, an adult dog eating too much calcium won’t absorb it and instead, it can cause constipation.

References
  1. Are you feeding your dog the right amount?. PetMD. Available here. https://www.petmd.com/blogs/nutritionnuggets/dr-coates/2015/july/are-you-feeding-your-dog-right-amount-32905
  2. Puppy feeding guide. Nom Nom Now. Available here. https://www.nomnomnow.com/learn/puppy-care/puppy-feeding-guide#puppy-feeding-chart
  3. Interview with Vet Marty Becker, Author 'Your Dog: The Owner's Manual'. AARP. Available here. https://www.aarp.org/relationships/pets/info-05-2011/interview-marty-becker-veterinarian-author-speaks.html

How To Stop A Dog From Chewing The Bed In 3 Simple Steps

How To Stop Dog From Chewing Their Bed  In 3 Simple To Follow Steps

Is your dog destroying their bed?

If your pup is making you invest in a new bed several times a year, especially if it's one of the best dog bed options, you might have a problem on your hands. To know how to stop a dog from chewing on their bed, you need to understand why they do it. 

In today’s article, we’ll explore the reasons behind that bed-destroying behavior, and exactly what you should do to stop it.


Why Does My Dog Chew Their Bed?

Not all dogs chew on their beds for the same reasons. Because of that, understanding why they’re chewing will make it easier to stop that nasty habit. Here are some of the reasons why your dog could be acting out:

Separation Anxiety

This is one of the most common reasons for dogs chewing on their bed. If your pup isn’t accustomed to staying alone for long periods of time, they might chew to calm themselves. If your dog chews the bed in their crate, they could suffer from anxiety.

In those cases, your best bet is to slowly train them to stay more time on their own. You can do this by crate training them: that way your dog will think of their crate as a safe place where they can play and sleep.

“Separation anxiety can cause your dog stress and unhappiness. To avoid it, train them to stay at home starting a few minutes at a time.”

If you don’t want to lock your dog in a crate for several hours, you can also leave them on a secure room with a baby gate. This will limit their roaming around the house and they’ll feel less stressed because they have more space to move.

Whatever the method you choose, it’s important to start doing exercises where the dog spends progressively more time alone. The first day, you can do 1 minute, the next day 5 and so on. You should bump the time up only when your dog stays calm for the entire duration of the exercise.

Some dogs are very sensitive and might need to start with you going on the next room instead of leaving the house. Others might be fine for short periods of time but need training to stay alone for several hours. Think about your dog’s needs and train accordingly.

PRO TIP: If you work out of the home and your dog will be alone for several hours every day, keep this in mind before adopting a new pup. Try to time the adoption with a vacation, summer break or some down time at work. That way, you’ll have time to train them to stay at home without feeling stressed.

Teething

Are you wondering how to stop your puppy from chewing the dog bed? If they are between 3 and 7 months, they’re probably teething. Just like babies, when your puppy is changing teeth their gums itch. For around two months, your little one will want to chew on anything to feel better.

In those cases, you just need to offer a nicer chewing alternative. There are freezable toys that will alleviate the itch, or you can also offer tug-type ropes to help their gums. Just offer the toy when you see them start to chew their bed.

Hunger

Sometimes dogs chew on their beds because they want food. To know if this is the reason, try to think if there’s a pattern to when your dog chews on their bed.

If your dog only chews around meal time, and never after eating, hunger might be the cause. To fix this, try breaking up their daily food into several portions instead of one single meal.

Boredom

Dogs that don’t exercise or play often enough will usually develop unwanted behaviors. This can be anything from barking all day, to overeating and chewing on their bed.

You can usually blame boredom if your four-legged friend doesn’t go on walks and also has other destroying tendencies.

In general, this is one of the easiest causes to treat. You should take your dog on longer, more frequent walks and also offer mental stimulation. The latter can be in the form of extra training: teaching your dog new tricks, or enrolling in obedience or agility classes.

Stress and frustration

For many rescue dogs, chewing on their beds might be a way to express frustration. This is common among dogs that are locked up on a kennel for most of their day, as well as dogs that haven’t learned to reign in their excitement.

In this case, owners should take the time to understand the reason of that frustration. Is it that they want to play? Extra attention? Food? Whatever that is, offer it before they get frustrated, and train them to ask nicely.

For example, a dog that chews on the bed when their owners get home as way to control their barking, might do well with a new routine. Maybe you train them to sit quietly when someone enters the house. This will redirect their energy and keep their bed safe.

Compulsive behaviors (fabric sucking)

Dogs, like humans and other animals, can develop compulsions. This is especially common among dogs that have lived traumas like abandonment or violence, as well as puppies that lost their moms when they were very young.

In those cases, sucking can become a way to self-soothe, but also a compulsive behavior. Dogs with compulsive behaviors don’t know how to stop even if they hurt themselves. That’s why a puppy that compulsively sucks on fabric will stay hours doing it, and even make their gums raw.

If you think your dog might have compulsive behaviors, it’s important to talk to your vet. They will be able to asses your pup and also prescribe special meds if needed. For many dogs with compulsion and trauma, meds are the only way to make training easier.

Anxious dog next to a hole she just chewed in a sofa

How To Stop A Dog From Chewing Up Their Bed

Once your dog keeps chewing on their bed constantly, it becomes a habit. In fact, constant chewing will destroy their bed and also get it nasty! Cleaning a dog bed can be tiresome, so it’s better to avoid the chewing altogether. In order to break this habit, you need to re-train them to chew something else.

What you need:

  • A dog bed
  • Different toy options your dog can chew on
  • Patience

Now that you’re ready to start, here’s our simple guide:

1. Watch your dog

The first step is knowing your dog: what they chew, and when they do it. That way you’ll understand their telltale signs, preferences and for how long they want to chew their bed.

2. Get a proper chewing toy (or more)

Now that you know what your dog is chewing, it’s time to pick toys that you’ll actually let them chew on. This is key: you can’t eliminate bad behavior without offering a better option. In the beginning, pick up an assortment of toys. Your dog will usually have a couple of favorites among those. It’s important to offer attractive toys that your dog will enjoy chewing. Then, once you need more, try to pick new toys similar to the ones they liked the best.

PRO TIP: Choose a toy that mimics the bed you want them to stop chewing on. For example, if they only chew on the plastic side of the bed, pick a firm toy. If they’d rather chew on the canvas part, try a stuffed toy or another type of canvas toy.

3. When your dog chews their bed, interrupt them

Now that you have the new toys, keep an eye on your dog but don’t offer the new toys yet. Once you see them chewing on their bed, call their name. If you see they’re focused on you, praise them and offer the new toy.

4. Redirect their behavior

Substituting the bed with an approved toy is called redirection. This is an easy technique based on consistency. Every time they try to chew their bed, get their attention and offer the toy instead. You should do this always or it won’t work. If you have more people in the house, instruct them to do the same.

5. Praise them for chewing their toy

Thanks to the redirection, your dog will quickly understand that chewing on the toy is allowed. Now you want them to see that you enjoy it when they chew on their toy. That way, they’ll do it more often and it will become a new habit.

Every time you see your dog chewing on their toy (even if it’s not the exact toy you used to train them with), praise them and give them attention. This will reinforce that chewing on toys is allowed, but chewing on beds isn’t.

PRO TIP: Once your dog makes the connection that chewing toys is good and chewing beds is bad, you can start telling them “no” with a firm voice every time they want to chew the bed. In those cases, one correction will suffice. After you tell them no, offer the toy instead.

Little Pit Bull Terrier puppy chewing toy

Expert Tricks To Control Destructive Chewing In Dogs

  • Offer plenty of chewable toys and edible snacks: You don’t have to stuff your house with toys, but do offer your dog different options. Just like kids, their favorites change with time and they will probably destroy some toys. This is normal and it’s always better than them chewing on their bed!
  • Supervise your dog: This is essential when you’re redirecting bad behavior. Try to ensure that every time they do the forbidden habit you correct them. Keep in mind that, even if you aren’t always watching your dog, they know when you’re in the room. If you forget to correct the behavior, they’ll believe you no longer think it’s important and you’ll be back to square one. Keep training consistent and you’ll see results in no time.
  • Exercise: A bored dog will show destructive behaviors. Luckily, that’s one of the easiest things to fix. Keep your pup mentally stimulated and tired and you’ll never see them chewing on their bed again.

PRO TIP: If you and your dog aren’t used to heavy exercise, don’t start with long, intense workouts. This can be harmful to their health! Try shorter walks around the block and gradually boost the intensity and length.


My Dog Is Chewing Their Bed: What NOT To Do

Don’t punish your dog

Negative punishment like yelling, hitting or slapping, is never effective to manage you dog’s behavior. As we already covered, most of the reasons that lead your dog to chew their bed are beyond their control or directly your fault as an owner (i.e.. Lack of exercise).

“Never physically punish a dog for chewing their bed. This will only cause anxiety and stress.”

PRO TIP: Avoid muzzling your dog to prevent chewing. Although muzzling can be done safely, it will do nothing to prevent chewing once the muzzle is off and your dog will associate negative emotions with the muzzle.

Don’t take it personal

Have you ever thought “I think my dog chew that out of spite”? Well, that’s never the case. Your dog isn’t anxious “out of spite” and them chewing your laptop’s cables wasn’t because “they knew those were important”. If your dog chews something you didn’t want to, it’s on you as the owner because you didn’t puppy-proof your home.

Just like with kids, dogs can and will get into anything they have access to. To prevent this, make sure any dangerous or valuable items are stored out of their reach. This is especially important if you’ll be leaving your dog at home by themselves. If you can’t make sure you’ve picked up everything, keep your dog on a secure space closed by a baby gate or in a spacious crate.

PRO TIP: If you’ll be putting your dog on their crate for long periods of time (1+ hours) it’s very important to provide plenty of exercise and positive attention through play time once you get home. If not, your bored pup will misbehave every time you leave the house.

Don’t chase them

If your dog is chewing something they shouldn’t or that could be dangerous to their health, your first instinct might be to lounge after them. However, this could be counter effective: your pup will either get scared or think you want to play.  In both cases they won’t release the item. A better way is to offer a replacement object, like a toy. Praise them once they let go.

PRO TIP: While you offer a chewable toy, use a command in a firm voice. This can be anything, but it should be short and easy to remember. “Release” should work well. Eventually, your dog will associate the word with “letting go”. That way, you’ll be able to use it even when you don’t have a toy to offer.


Chew-Proof Dog Beds: How To Choose The Right Bed

Looking for an anti-chew dog bed? While there isn’t a single bed that will once and for all make your dog stop chewing it, mouthy dogs respond better to some beds than others. Here’s what you should look out for:

  • Avoid zippers: Because they raise the fabric and are firm, many dogs chew on their bed’s zippers. If your dog does this, try to find a bed with Velcro covers. This could be the only change needed to keep your dog from chewing their bed!
  • Go for all-fabric: If your dog is chewing plastic, it can be very dangerous for their health! Stick to canvas beds: your dog will have a harder time chewing them because there are no hard corners. Plus, they might get entirely discouraged by the texture.
  • Choose a plush, soft bed: In line with the trick above, it’s better to choose plush, soft beds without stiff edges, like the othopedic dog bed options. This means picking canvas beds without piping on the edges and no plastic parts.

PRO TIP: Make sure your dog has some “chewable” toys in or around their bed. That way they’ll remember to focus on the approved toys and not on their crate.


Final Thoughts

If your puppy is chewing their bed, it might seem difficult to get them to stop. However, redirecting chewing behavior is easier than you’d think! We hope our simple tricks will help your pup stop destroying their bed in no time. Let us know your experiences down below!


FAQ

Should I apply chewing deterrent on my dog’s bed?

This is common advice, but we don’t recommend it. Chewing deterrent has smells and tastes that make chewing unappealing. This is useful for dogs chewing on items that they weren’t supposed to get into.

However, you want your dog to like their bed and stay in it. If you spray it with chewing deterrent, this might stop the chewing, but they won’t use their bed anymore.

Because of this, we recommend redirecting the chewing behavior and avoiding chemicals as much as possible.

How To Wash A Dog Bed In 6 Simple Steps

How To Clean A Dog Bed In 6 Really Simple Steps

You've done the hard work already and found the best dog bed for your precious pooch, however if your dog’s bed hasn’t been washed since the day you bought it… it’s time for a deep cleaning, otherwise it will need to be replaced in no time. 

Just like your own, your dog’s sleeping quarters need some regular maintenance. If not, they could develop skin allergies, or even get fleas! Avoid the nasty smell and keep your pup feeling clean with our ultimate guide to cleaning your dog’s bed.


Dog Bed Cleaning: What You’ll need

Of course, you’ll need a dirty dog bed to start with. But you’ll also have to get these basic supplies to ensure your pup’s bed ends up sparkling clean. Here’s a quick list:

  • Pet-safe laundry detergent
  • Enzyme stain removal
  • Optional: pet-friendly dryer sheets

It’s important to carefully choose any product you use on your dog’s bed and covers. Human products can be toxic to pets, so make sure any detergent or chemical won’t harm your furry friend. Here’s how to make the best choice for every item:

Pet-Safe Laundry Detergent

This is very important. If you choose the wrong product your dog could have allergies, itchy skin and rashes! Unfortunately, many chemicals found in regular household items are very toxic to dogs.

PRO TIP: Avoid detergents with chlorine, ammonia, formaldehyde, phenols, and isopropyl alcohol. In general, find the softest detergent available and try it out.

Stain Removal Products

If you want to give your dog’s bed a true facelift, it might be worth it to try to get the stains out. However, many dog-related stains are very hard to lift because they’re organic. Choose a delicate enzyme stain remover without any of the ingredients mentioned above.

PRO TIP: Hydrogen peroxide works amazingly well at lifting organic stains (like mud, pee or poop) from dog beds, while also being reasonably harmless if you rinse it well.

Optional: Dryer Sheets or Dryer Balls

Pet-safe dryer sheets can be expensive, and still give allergic reactions to your pup. Whenever possible, let your dog’s bed air dry, or just pop it in the dryer on its own.

PRO TIP: Avoid the chemical-laden dryer sheets and use natural alternatives to soften your dog’s covers. A ball of aluminum foil in the dryer will take care of the static, while white vinegar or baking soda added to the wash cycle will soften your dog’s bedding.

dog bed cleaning products

How To Clean The Different Types Of Dog Beds

The first step is knowing what you’re up against. Does the dog bed have a removable cover? Is it made with foam? Can you use it on the washing machine? All these answers should be on the original packaging, official site, or even your Amazon order.

Then, once you’ve determined what type of bed you have, you need to start working:

How To Clean A Dog Bed With A Removable Cover

If you have removable covers, you’re golden. It will be easier and faster than with other beds.

Remove the covers

Covers make cleaning your dog’s bed an easy process. If your pup’s bed has removable covers, start by finding the zipper and removing them completely.

PRO TIP: Vacuum the dog bed before getting the covers off or starting any in-depth cleaning. That way, you’ll avoid spreading the dog hair and dandruff all over your living room.

Soak your dog bed

Once you have taken them off, soak the removable cover and the dog bed in lukewarm soapy water. Remember to use pet-friendly detergent! Let the bed soak for 30 minutes to an hour. You can pre-soak everything right on your washing machine to avoid making a mess.

PRO TIP: If the care instructions on your dog bed allow it, use the hottest water temperature in your washing machine. This will kill any unwanted insects and eggs that might be on your dog’s bed.

Wash the bed in the washing machine

This isn’t the time for the delicate cycle. Use the “jeans” cycle or any other “deep cleaning” option your washing machine offers.

Rinse your doggy bed

After the washing is done, it’s especially important to rinse all the detergent off. Even if it isn’t toxic to pets, leaving traces of detergent can cause skin allergies and even intoxication.

PRO TIP: Add a second rinse cycle to your washing program. This will ensure no residue is left on your pooch’s bed.

Dry the bed & covers

You can let them air dry or you can use the dryer. Whatever you choose, it’s essential you make sure your dog’s bed is completely dry before putting

 them back. Leaving the interior even slightly wet could lead to fungal issues that will make your pup uncomfortable and might even get serious skin conditions. In general, I prefer letting it air dry and giving them 10 to 15 minutes on the dryer to really make sure it’s all dry.

PRO TIP: If you really want your dog’s covers to be soft, avoid chemical dryer sheets, and add a bit of baking soda or vinegar to the rinse cycle..


How Do You Wash A Dog Bed Without A Washing Machine? 

Wondering how do you clean a large dog bed? Let’s say your dog’s bed is too large to fit on your regular washer or maybe the instructions specifically state you shouldn’t wash it on a washing machine (this is often the case with orthopedic dog beds).

In both cases, you’ll have to wash it by hand. No worries, it’s easier than it seems. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Start by removing the covers, if at all possible. Since the covers are the dirtiest part of a doggy bed, removing them will make your job easier. You can either throw them on the washer or wash them by hand in a smaller container.
  • Then, fill up your tub with soapy water using pet-friendly detergent. If you don’t have a tub, you can also use a very large bucket, washbowl, or some other type of container.
  • Soak your dog bed in the water. Make sure all the fabric is covered and there’s enough extra water in your tub or container.
  • Let it soak for an hour or two. This will make your job easier later on, and you won’t need to scrub so hard.
  • Wash. Scrub with your hands or with an old brush. Feel free to change the soapy water if it gets too muddy.
  • Rinse. This is key to avoiding skin issues further down the line. Rinse with abundant water, and if possible, do a double rinse. This will rid your dog’s bed of all chemicals.
  • Dry: Either air dry or place it in the drier. It’s important to let it release most of the water on its own: if you put a soggy dog bed in your drier you will damage the machine!

How To Clean A Dog Bed Without A Removable Cover

A machine-washable removable cover makes cleaning your dog bed easier. However, if you can’t do it, you can still deep clean your dog’s bed following these simple steps.

Step One: Vacuum the bed

This is essential to deep cleaning your dog’s bed. If you don’t get as much of the grime and fur out of the bed, no amount of cleaning will get rid of it. In fact, dog hair clings even further to wet fabric, so you’ll want to remove as much hair as possible before getting anything wet.

Step Two: Spot clean

Use a pet-friendly stain remover to help with this step. You should avoid anything with ammonia and chlorine because they can be irritant to your dog’s airways and skin. It’s important to follow your product’s instructions and let it treat the stains for at least a few minutes.

Step Three: Soak (optional)

Once you treat the stains, you can either wash it as is or let the entire bed soak in lukewarm soapy water using pet-friendly detergent. Doing so will loosen the stains and dirt, making it easier to deep clean your dog’s bed.

Step Four: Wash

This can be either on the washing machine or by hand. Either way, you’ll need to use the same pet-friendly detergent as before. If you’re washing by hand, scrub harder on the stains to try and lift them.

PRO TIP: Use an old toothbrush to scrub the stains if you’re not using a washer. It’s easier than doing it entirely by hand!

Step Five: Rinse

This step is especially important because rinsing ensures no detergent comes in contact with your dog’s skin. If possible, rinse twice to really get all the chemicals out.

Step Six: Dry

For this step, you can either let it dry on its own or pop in the dryer. If you decide to use the dryer and add dryer sheets, stick to pet-friendly products that won’t cause allergies.


How To Wash A Dog Bed With Urine?

Urine smells bad and can permanently stain your doggy’s bed. Here’s what you should do if your pup has an accident:

  • Soak it up: If the bed has urine, the first thing you need to do is try to soak it up as soon as possible. You can only do this if the accident is very recent, but it will make a difference when you’re cleaning urine from your dog’s bed. Use paper towels or old t-shirts to soak in as much of the urine as possible.
  • Apply vinegar: Add a generous amount of vinegar to the affected area. Don’t dilute it with water; only pure white vinegar will get rid of the smell. Leave it on for 10-20 minutes.
  • Sprinkle baking soda: Once you’ve soaked in vinegar, sprinkle baking soda liberally over all the affected areas. Let it dry on the bed for at least 8 hours. Overnight would be better.
  • Vacuum: Vacuum the baking soda from the bed.
  • Dry: At this point, the dog bed is probably still damp. Let it dry on the sun to get rid of any lingering smell, or put it on the dryer with an old t-shirt soaked in vinegar. It will eliminate any stink that might be left behind.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, cleaning your dog bed is easier than it looks. In fact, you don’t need to spend a crazy amount of money on professional cleaners, or buying a new bed. Hopefully, these easy tips will make your next spring cleaning a seamless process. Do you have any secret to deep cleaning your dog’s bed? Share with us on the comments below!

FAQ

Is it ok to wash a dog bed in a washing machine?

Yes! In fact, if at all possible, only get dog beds that can be washed and fit in your washing machine.

If it fits in your regular washing machine, give it a go. If your dog is way too large (and their bed as well), get it to the cleaners where they have industrial washing machines.

Of course, check the labels to make sure you won’t ruin your dog’s bed.

How to clean an orthopedic foam dog bed?

This depends on your bed’s specific requirements. However, most orthopedic foam dog beds can’t be soaked in water. To solve this, you should clean an orthopedic dog foam bed as you would a mattress.

Start by vacuuming the entire bed as best as you can. Do it several times until almost all of the visible hair and grime is gone.

Then, spot treat any visible stains with an enzyme cleaner. Let the product do its job and leave the bed alone for around half an hour or as directed on the product’s bottle.

Then, sprinkle a baking soda paste liberally all over the bed. This paste is just 2 tbsp of baking soda to 1 tsp of water. Adjust as needed until you have a “spreadable” paste. Let the baking soda dry overnight.

Vacuum the baking soda off the bed, and let the bed dry on its own. You can also pop it on the dryer if the product specifications allow it. Now you’re done!