Dogs love their toys. Whether it is playing catch or chewing a fake animal, toys are a surefire way to get a dog excited. However, it can be a drag if you’re constantly replacing dog toys. There is no need to throw away and replace dog toys just because they are dirty. Keeping toys clean and well-maintained will ensure that they are around for a long time.
Scrape off visible dirt and debris.
Use a toothbrush to brush away any dirt, leaves, grass, or food particles. Getting the big pieces off is the first step before you try to disinfect the toy of any microbes or smaller bacteria.
Soak hard and rubber dog toys in warm, soapy water.
Fill the sink with hot water and add a squirt of liquid dish soap. Hold each toy under the running water and scrub it with a sponge or by hand. Be sure to wash away any food that may be stuck in stuff-able chew toys, and rub out grass stains, dirt stains and other noticeable imperfections.
You can also soak the dog toys in one part water and one part white vinegar if you are uncomfortable with the idea of your dog ingesting soap.
It’s not a good idea to wash items like dog bones or pig ears that dogs eat.
Rinse the dog toys under cold running water.
Squeeze excess water out of the toys, particularly the squeaky or rubber toys. Lay them on a towel to air dry.
Sanitize dog toys by running them through the dishwasher.
Place the toys on the top rack of the dishwasher, and run the machine on a hot cycle, without any detergent.This method will use very hot water and strong water pressure to ensure the toys are sterilized. Allow soft and stuffed toys to air dry after the dishwasher cycle is complete.
Washing dog toys frequently and keeping them germ-free is a good way to keep them in good shape. You don’t need to clean the toy every day or even every week, but a few times a month you should repeat this process. The dog toys will stay in better condition and your animal will be able to enjoy them for longer.
Clear off dirt and debris.
Use a wire comb or a toothbrush to try to get rid of any dirt, food, and other crud on the dog toy. A wire comb is good for getting this type of debris out of dog toys that have fake fur on them.
Wash the toys in the washing machine.
The washing machine is probably the best way to clean a soft dog toy. Check the tags on stuffed animals to ensure they can be put in the washing machine. Wash them on a gentle cycle with a mild detergent or no detergent at all. Once the washing machine has finished you can run the toys through the dryer on low heat for about 30 minutes. You also could allow them to air dry.
It’s okay to throw tennis balls in the wash. Keep in mind that new tennis balls actually aren’t good for dogs, so throw the ball in the dirt a few times before giving it back to your dog. That way the chemicals from the packaging won’t irritate their throat.
Microwave the soft and stuffed toys.
Try to remove as much excess crud as possible before you put the toy in the microwave. The heat from the microwave will do the rest to kill the bacteria and germs on the toy. Make sure you start by soaking the toys in water, ringing them out, and then placing them in the microwave. Run the microwave for 1 minute, keeping an eye on the toys while they heat. Be careful removing toys from the microwave, as they might be hot.
Do not microwave a toy if it has any metal on it.
Microwaving is a great idea for rope toys.
Put dirty rope toys in the dishwasher.
Although it isn’t a good idea to put stuffed animal toys or anything with plastic inside of it in the dishwasher, rope toys are fine. If you don’t have a microwave and you want to clean a rope toy you can easily throw it in a dishwasher with no detergent.
The more often you clean the toy the better condition it will stay in. If you want to use the toy for longer, take good care of it.
Do not use bleach.
You could kill your animal this way and it isn’t worth the risk. The ASPCA says that using watered down bleach on non-porous toys is alright, but you should just stick with another cleaning solution that won’t endanger your dog.
Categories: Pets and Animals