How To Wash Plush Dog Toys With Squeakers?

|7 min read

As your furry friend chews, drools, and plays with their toys, those items can quickly become dirty and contaminated with bacteria and germs. This is especially true for plush toys for dogs. Keeping your dog's toys squeaky clean is essential for their health and safety.

Now you must be wondering how to wash plush dog toys with squeakers.

We know plush toys with squeakers are tricky to clean, as the squeakers inside can easily get damaged. We are here to help you with that!

This article will discuss tips and tricks for washing dog toys with squeakers without damaging them.

10 Simple Tips For Washing Plush Dog Toys With Squeakers

Washing your dog's squeaky toys differs from washing other dogs' toys. This is because there are some conditions you must work around.

Let's walk you through how to deal with these squeaky dog toys.

1) Check for Instructions

Inspect the tag for washing directions, if and only if your dog hasn't been curious enough to pull the tag off!

If there are no instructions for your dog's toy, adhere to the guidelines below.

2) Remove Loose Dirt

Use a lint roller or soft-bristled brush to remove loose dirt or debris from the dog toy.

3) Use a Non-Scented Gentle Detergent

Laundry and dishwasher detergents made with plant-based ingredients are ideal for washing dog toys. These detergents don't have any color dye additives and are safe for washing dog toys.

4) Prepare for Washing

Once the toy is brushed, place it in a mesh laundry bag. This will help protect it from damage during the wash cycle.

The mesh bag method also helps avoid losing any toy parts.

5) Start a Gentle Wash Cycle

The next step is to machine wash dog toys. Washing most toys, like rope toys and rubber toys, in hot water is advised to disinfect them.

However, when washing a plush toy, it is advised to use cold or lukewarm water. This is because hot water can melt the glue inside the plush toy and damage the squeaker.

Ensure your washing cycle is gentle to clean these dirty dog toys without damaging them.

6) Rinse Thoroughly

Once the washing cycle is complete, remove your pet's toys from the mesh bag and rinse them thoroughly with cold water.

7) Air Dry

Take your dog's toys out of the washer after the final rinse. Gently wring them out to remove any excess water. This will help your dog's toys dry faster. Then hang the toy in a well-ventilated area to dry completely.

Please do not put the toy in the dryer, as the high heat can damage the toy and the squeaker.

Ensure the plush toy is completely dry before handing it to your dog. If it's still wet, there are chances that your dog may ingest the chemicals. The toy can even start to grow mold because of the dampness inside.

8) Hand Wash When Necessary

It's important to understand that some plush toys, especially those with delicate features, cannot withstand a machine wash.

For these toys, it's best to hand wash them with mild detergent and cold water. Don't soak them for long hours because the plush toy can get damaged.

9) Cleaning Toys Exposed to Mites and Viruses 

Suppose your dog's plush toy was exposed to parvo virus. Experts always recommend throwing away the toy exposed to viruses. But for some reason, if disposing of the toy is not an option, you can soak the toys in diluted household bleach. Make sure it's one part bleach and 32 parts water. Once mixed, wash it with detergent in hot water. 

If you or anyone in your home has bed bugs or dust mite allergy, your dog's plush toys must be machine washed with hot water to kill them. Bed bugs and mites love to latch on places like dirty fabrics or dog toys. 

Make sure you wash your dog toys or get rid of them if they are full of germs.

10) Inspect the Dog Toys Thoroughly

It's advised to inspect the plush dog toys before and after washing. This is particularly important for machine-washed toys.

At times, the toy stitching can loosen. So it's better to fix it before handing the plush toy to your dog. This will also increase the life span of your dog's plush toy with squeakers.

Remember, these small little details go a long way in keeping your furry little friend healthy and safe.

How Are Plush Squeakers Different from Other Toys?

Plush toys with squeakers are made from soft materials such as fabric or faux fur.

They are designed to be comforting for pets. They also contain a built-in squeaker, which adds an element of excitement and engagement for dogs.

The squeaker inside the dog toy can encourage your furry friend to engage with the sound. This can help improve their cognitive abilities and keep their minds active in the long run.

Like any toy, plush squeaker toys also have their cons. They can be easily destroyed by dogs that are vigorous chewers. Moreover, the squeaker inside the toy can pose a choking hazard if swallowed.

This is why it's essential to supervise your dogs while they play with plush squeaker toys to ensure their safety and well-being.

Why Should You Clean Plush Squeaky Dog Toys?

We just answered your query how to wash dog toys. Now comes the second part - why you should clean plush dog toys.

The first and foremost reason for cleaning plush squeaky dog toys is that it can help protect your pet's health. Over time, dog toys can accumulate dirt, dust, and bacteria, leading to skin irritation, allergies, and infections.

Your furry friend can get puppy acne if squeaky plush toys are left uncleaned. Bacteria and dirt usually settle in the pores and hair follicles of your dog's cute face. When bacteria and dirt gets trapped, it can cause irritation. Such bacteria can cause small red bumps and even pustules: puppy acne.

Additionally, plush toys can become a breeding ground for mold, especially if they are left in damp or humid areas and covered in drool.

Regularly cleaning your dog's plush toys can help prevent these health issues and keep your pet healthy and happy.

Another reason to clean plush squeaky dog toys is to extend their lifespan.

With time, dirt and grime can build up on the surface of the toy. Your dog might not care about it, but it is an unpleasant and unhealthy sight.

Additionally, dirt and debris can get trapped in the fabric's fibers, making removal more difficult after a while. Periodically cleaning your squeaky plush dog toys can help keep them looking and feeling new.

Extending toys' lifespan can keep your pet obsessing over them!

When To Throw Out Dog Toys VS Cleaning Them

You want to keep your dog happy and healthy. This includes providing them with toys to play with.

However, these toys can become dirty, damaged, or even dangerous over time. So it's essential to know when to throw them out and when to clean them.

Knowing when to clean dog toys and when to throw them away is a call you have to make consciously by inspecting the following factors:


If a toy is damaged, it's time to throw it out. Broken toys can pose a choking hazard, cause injury to your dog's mouth, and even cause death in extreme scenarios.

Wear and Tear

Even if you see no visible wear and tear, it is essential to let go of a toy if it is too worn out.

It can break apart at any time and be a hazard. So, keeping an eye on your dog's toys and replacing them when they show signs of wear and tear is essential.


If the toy grosses you out because it is too dirty or smelly to clean, it's probably time to throw it out. This is often required for soft, plush toys that absorb bacteria and other germs.


Cleaning your dog's dirty squeaker toys is essential for pet care. If not taken care of in time, your dogs can become exposed to kennel cough or canine parvovirus. Not only that, certain diseases can be transmitted to humans as well. These include Brucellosis, Campylobacteriosis, Leptospirosis, Rabies, and Ringworm.

Regular washing can help remove harmful bacteria and dirt, making playtime safer for your pet so that your pup can have the time of his life.

Following the tips highlighted in this blog, you can quickly and safely wash your dog's dirty toys with squeakers, thus ensuring that they remain fun and safe for your furry friend.


Washing dog toys with baking soda. Does it work?

If the toys are very smelly, place them in a bag and sprinkle baking soda. Then shake the bag, and let it sit for about an hour. Some of the odor will be absorbed by the baking soda.

Once that is done, run a typical wash cycle with them as instructed in the article above. Sometimes you will have to repeat the rinse cycle to ensure that all the dirt is removed.

Can you wash dog toys with laundry detergent?

Be sure to use pet-friendly laundry detergent. Usually, scent-free variations are advised. Add a cup of white vinegar or non-chlorine bleach to the water to increase the effectiveness of your detergent.

Once washed, make sure you let the toys dry completely. Wet toys have a higher chance of developing mold, which is unsafe for dogs. The best option is to let them air dry completely.

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