How to Clean Cat Beds
How to Clean Cat Beds
Keeping your cat’s bed clean benefits the health, hygiene, and appearance of your pet and your home. Cleaning your cat’s bed is especially important as a way to reduce bacterial growth and possible flea infestations. Regularly remove extra hair, wash the cover, and clean the mattress or pad to keep your cat’s bed clean. You can also take measures to remove fleas and their eggs while you wash the bed.
Removing Extra Hair
Loosen the hair.Shake the cat bed to loosen the hair. You can also try lightly beating the bed with your fist to get the hair loose. Next, put on a rubber glove and grab all the loose hair you can. Immediately throw the extra hair in the trash. Loosening the hair will make your vacuuming and other hair removal more effective.
Vacuum the cat bed.Use the crevice tool on your vacuum to remove hair and dirt from the nooks and crannies of the cat bed. After using the crevice tool, go over the entire bed with a mini motorized tool or a vacuum hose to remove any remaining hair and dirt. Try wetting the bed first, letting the water dry, then vacuuming to more effectively remove the hair.
- Sprinkle baking soda on the cat bed first to remove any odors.
- Vacuum around the cat bed to remove hair from the floor.
- You can also remove flea eggs by thoroughly vacuuming the bed and surrounding floor.
- Flea eggs can live in the vacuum bag, so dispose of the dust very carefully. Use gloves and take the bag directly to the dumpster outside, getting it out of your house as quickly as you can.
Use a lint brush.Rub the bed with a lint brush to remove any hair that the vacuum didn’t catch. Or use a lint roller that has disposable sticky tape to make it easier and cleaner to throw the hair away. Alternatively, brush the bed with a stiff-bristled brush to remove the extra hair. Carefully and completely dispose of all loose hair in the trash.
Washing the Cover
Remove extra debris.Check the cover all over to look for stains, large pieces of debris, vomit, or fecal matter. Use a stiff-bristled brush to rub off dried debris, vomit or feces into the trash can. Dry wet vomit or feces by sprinkling baking soda on them.
Wash the cover in the washing machine.Remove the cover from the cat bed. Use a pet-safe pre-stain treatment on any stains if you wish. Wash it on a cold cycle using a pet-safe detergent or an unscented, dye-free detergent.
- Wash your cat bed separately from other clothing or household laundry.
- Run it through two wash cycles if it is especially dirty.
Kill fleas in the wash.Wash the cover in hot water if you suspect there are fleas. Leave the cover to soak for an hour in the hot water if you see many fleas. Discourage fleas by adding a cup (240 mL) of white vinegar to the rinse cycle.
- Add a cup of vinegar to the washer whenever you clean the cat bed cover even if you don’t see or suspect fleas. The vinegar will help remove extra odors and kill bacteria.
Dry the cover.Put a dryer-safe cover in the dryer on a low setting. Throw one or two pet-safe dryer sheets in with the cover to remove any extra hair. Keep in mind the dryer will still remove extra hair without the dryer sheets, but the sheets are extra effective. Air dry a cover that cannot be put in the dryer.
- Try drying the cover outside for a nice outdoors scent that cats enjoy.
Cleaning the Mattress
Shake out the mattress.Once the cover is removed, shake any loose hairs or debris free from the cat bed’s mattress or pad. You can also carefully vacuum the mattress to remove debris. Use your fingers to remove large pieces of debris, and try using a rubber glove to grab any hair that is stuck on the mattress.
Wash the mattress.Put the mattress or pad into the washing machine with the cat bed cover, if it is washing machine-safe and if it is small enough to go in the washer. Otherwise, fill your tub with warm water and three tablespoons (44.36 mL) of detergent. Mix the soap and water to make it sudsy. Add the the mattress or pad to the tub and gently wash it in the sudsy water.
Rinse the mattress or pad.Remove the mattress from the tub and drain the tub. Refill the tub with clean water, and put the mattress back in to rinse the mattress. Gently squeeze the mattress and continue rinsing until there aren’t any suds in the water.
Dry the mattress.Take the mattress or pad outside if the weather allows and put it on a towel in a safe place to let it air dry. If you can’t dry it outside, put the mattress or pad on a towel in an airy place in your home to let it dry. Don’t let the cat or other pets near the drying mattress.
- Make sure both the mattress or pad and the cover are completely dry before you reassemble the cat bed.
Video: The Trick to Cleaning a Pet Bed - Martha Stewart
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