How to Care and Clean for Cedar Dog Beds

by Deborah Lundin
    Cedar dog beds reduce doggie odor, but cleaning can be time-consuming.

    Cedar dog beds reduce doggie odor, but cleaning can be time-consuming.

    BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images

    Cedar dog beds help to absorb pet odors and repel fleas. They also have a distinct fresh smell. Over time, a cedar dog bed's cover may become dirty or soiled; meanwhile, the cedar shavings will lose their scent. At this point, a good cleaning is necessary, as is the addition of cedar. If you're buying a new bed, look for one with a removable cover to make cleaning easier.

    Removable Cover Bed

    Step 1

    Unzip the bed cover and pour the old cedar chips into a garbage bag for disposal.

    Step 2

    Read the care label on the bed cover and follow directions. Some beds must be hand-washed and air-dried. If you hand-wash, fill a bathtub with warm water, mild laundry soap and 1/4 cup of vinegar for odors. Wash, rinse, and dry as directed. For machine-washing, add mild laundry detergent and 1/4 cup of vinegar.

    Step 3

    Add enough of the new cedar chips to fill the bed as desired. Adding more chips will provide a fluffy cushion for your pooch. Zip the cover closed and your cleaning is complete.

    Non-Removable Cover Bed

    Step 1

    Cut open a small section of the bed seam using a seam ripper or scissors. Pour the cedar chips out into a garbage bag for disposal.

    Step 2

    Wash the outer bed material by hand using mild detergent and ΒΌ cup of vinegar. Rinse well and allow to air dry.

    Step 3

    Fill the bed cover with new cedar chips. Using a needle and thread, sew up the bed opening to secure the cedar chips inside.

    Items You Will Need

    • Garbage bag
    • Mild detergent
    • Vinegar
    • Bag of cedar chips
    • Seam ripper or scissors
    • Needle and thread


    • To reduce cleaning times, cover your cedar bed with a lightweight blanket. Wash the blanket as needed.
    • Wash your dog bed at the same time you bathe your dog. A dirty dog on a clean bed will only speed up the time to the next cleaning.
    • If the cedar chips still give off a strong aroma andy you need to clean just a stain or smell on the outside of the bed, you may get away with not replacing the chips. A good rule of thumb is to replace the chips when the aroma diminishes.


    • Cedar can cause allergic reactions in some dogs. If you notice that your dog is itching on a regular basis, talk with your veterinarian about possible allergies.

    Photo Credits

    • BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Deborah Lundin is a professional writer with more than 20 years of experience in the medical field and as a small business owner. She studied medical science and sociology at Northern Illinois University. Her passions and interests include fitness, health, healthy eating, children and pets.