If you are a pet owner, at some point you have probably wondered how to wash a dog bed. Some dog beds are really difficult to figure out how to wash. But, in order to protect your pet and keep your home clean, the dog beds needs to be washed regularly. Most vets recommend that you wash your pet’s bedding once a week in order to kill germs, bacteria, dust mites and other unsavory things that you don’t want your pet sleeping on. Washing your pet’s bedding regularly will also cut down on the allergens in your home and stop pet hair from covering everything in the home. So if you are not sure how to wash a dog bed, use these suggestions from pet owners and vets to make sure that your dog’s bedding gets clean and stays soft and inviting:

Use a gentle soap: Your pet is going to be laying on the dog bed so it’s very important that you don’t use a harsh soap or a soap with a lot of chemical fragrance. Chemicals in harsh detergents can irritate your dog’s skin and cause rashes or dermatitis. Breathing in chemicals can cause asthma or other respiratory problems. Using a natural detergent like Rockin' Green that doesn’t contain any chemical fragrances or harsh cleaning agents is the best way to make sure your dog doesn’t have a bad reaction to his or her freshly washed bedding.

Wash bedding in hot water: You always wash your own bedding in hot water to kill bacteria and mites, so do the same for your pet. A gentle soap and a lot of hot water will sanitize your dog’s bedding and make it soft and clean naturally. Hot water is a great defense against any germs or even fleas that might be living in your dog’s bedding.

Brush off pet hair first: Dog hair can clog the hoses on your washer and cause problems down the line. Especially if you have an energy efficient front loading washing machine make sure that you get as much dog hair off the bedding as you can before you put it in the wash. An old toothbrush or a shoe brush are both great tools to use to get stubborn, clingy hair off the dog’s bedding before you wash it.

Dry the bedding on the delicate cycle: Washing a dog bed in hot water is necessary to get it clean. But if you dry it on the hottest dryer cycle you may damage the bedding or make the stuffing start to disintegrate. Dry the dog bed on the delicate setting or air dry it by setting it in the sun for a few hours.