Do you find it challenging to keep the hygiene inside of your pet’s crate? Besides their messy tendencies, dogs actually love a tidy and clean home.
Instinct and training make them extremely hesitant to perform bodily functions inside the cage. However, even the most behaved canines could make some mess. There is no guarantee you won’t find a nasty surprise one day.
If you’re owner who like to use plastic, metal or soft sided dog crate we are going to show you how to clean your canines kennel properly, and make it shiny and spotless again.
Recommended reading: How to Stop a Dog from Pooping in a Crate?
What to Clean Dog Crate With?
Cleaning dog crate with vinegar is one of the ways to ensure your pooch has a pleasant and sterile environment. If you make the solution properly, then it won’t leave residue or smell.
In one spray bottle, mix half a cup of white vinegar and one gallon of water. Spray the cage and let it sit for a couple of minutes. This should remove even the most hard-core stains and leave the kennel spotless.
When using bleach, there are a couple of things to consider. The majority of canines can handle this type of a cleaning solution, as long as the cage is dry once they use it again.
Bleach has a similar smell to urine, which may encourage your pooch to pee inside. Therefore, make sure the crate is dry before you let your pet in.
To make a bleach solution, you will need half a cup of bleach and one gallon of water. Mix the ingredients in the spray bottle and apply it to the affected areas.
- Baking Soda
Baking soda is the best kennel odor eliminator. You can simply add one box of baking soda to the washing machine, and it will do the trick.
The unpleasant smell will disappear, leaving your pet’s kennel odor-free. If soft sided crate can’t go into a washing machine, then use cold water.
Cleaning Soft Sided Dog Crates
- Disassemble the Parts
First of all, you have to be aware that each kennel contains necessary parts, which make the constriction sturdy. In most cases, soft-sided crates feature metal or plastic tubes, which can be removed.
Once you remove the tubes, the cage is ready for the cleaning process. Additionally, keep in mind that this type of carrier has zipped doors, so unzip all entries before you start washing the kennel.
Also, don’t forget to remove the wheels, if your pet’s cage has ones.
- Carefully Wash the Cover
Without a doubt, soft crates are easier to scrub than any other enclosure. Since all sides can easily be folded, they don’t take a lot of space and can fit almost any sink or washing machine.
If you want to avoid any harsh chemicals, then apply some of the cleaning solutions we mentioned before. Additionally, you can use dish soap and scrub the entire cover with it, using a sponge. That’s how we cleaned our elitefield soft dog crate.
Make sure to check on manufacturer’s website whether the cover can be washed in a washing machine. For bigger crate, you’ll have to use a bathtub, or rinse it off using a garden hose.
- Wash & Dry the Mat
The canvas dog crate often comes with a mat included, and it’s the part of the kennel that is dirty more often than not. You just remove the fabric and put it into a washing machine. The same rule applies to the mat, and if it’s removable, you don’t have to cleanse the entire unit. But make sure it’s dry thoroughly before you put it back again.
Of course, there are some disadvantages, and compared to rubber mat for dog crate, the soft-sided one will demand more of your time and hygiene.
- Clean the Frame
Luckily, with fabric cages, the frame is made of tubes which hold the entire construction. They can be metal or plastic ones, so it’s quite easy to clean.
For plastic tubes, you can use regular dish soap and water, while metal ones may require a bit of your time. Pet’s urine can cause corrosion; therefore, you will need some solution to get rid of the rust.
The best way to remove the rust is to use WD 40 spray, and then hot water and dish soap to scrub everything off. Don’t forget to disinfect the tubes before you put them back together.
Using alcohol will be enough to remove all the bacteria and grime. Finally, let tubes dry completely, preferably on sunlight.
- Reassemble the Parts
Once you have everything nice and clean, it’s time to reassemble all the parts. For the majority of pet parents, this is probably the easiest step.
However, before you proceed, make sure that all features are dry enough. Otherwise, you are risking the health of your pooch, and also the condition of the fabric and the frame.
How to Clean Metal Dog Cages?
When it comes to heavy-duty crates, they are a bit tricky to maintain. However, the vast majority of them has a pull-out tray, which makes the cleaning process slightly more comfortable. But, here are a couple of steps to make metal cage polished:
- Prepare the kennel
Remove the blanket and all the toys your pet may have. Put the mat or cushion into the washing machines, while wiping down the toys. If they are stuffed, they can go along with the blanket.
You can wash metal enclosure indoors or outdoors, depending on weather conditions. If it’s cold outside, line the tub with a thin towel and place the cage into a bathtub. Use the head shower to spray the unit and then fill the bucket with warm water and one tablespoon of dish soap. Use a scrub brush to apply the solution to the crate, making sure to scrub the rusty areas.
Wash away all the soap thoroughly because it can cause stomach issues in dogs.
- Eliminate bacteria
You can either buy a disinfecting product in pet care shop or rub the alcohol over the entire construction.
- Remove Odor
If you have issues with odor, use a vinegar mixture we mentioned previously. With a spray bottle, apply a generous amount and then rinse it off after 15 minutes. The water & vinegar mix should stop the unpleasant smell.
- Dry the kennel
Before you let your pooch inside, use a towel to soak up all the moisture. Once the crate is entirely dry, it’s ready for your dog again.
Rusty Dog Crate Clean
If your kennel is in pretty bad condition, then it requires a lot of work to restore its previous glory. First of all, wire brush it to remove all the rust, then prime and paint it with the non-toxic spray. Refurbishing will ensure durability and protect the metal cage from further damage.
Clen Dog Crate Pad
Pad is the most natural part to clean. Make sure the pad is washing machine approved, and pop it inside. You don’t have to wash the entire unit, to clean the dog’s mat. Remove the pad and clean it whenever it’s necessary.
How to Disinfect Plastic Crates?
Plastic carriers are among the easiest ones to clean, but this entire process can pose a challenge for many pet parents. You might require to get rid of the dirt, stains, odor, and other unpleasant surprises.
Whatever the case is, it can be done in a couple of simple steps.
- Break the cage apart
If you are looking for an easy way to scrub the plastic kennel, then start by breaking it apart. Hinged closures connect most cages, or they are linked with screws and plastic nuts. Once you remove the top, the cleaning doesn’t require too much time.
- Hose out the waste
Take a pair of gloves to protect your hands from pollutants and then take out the cage outside. House out all the traces of solid or liquid waste and then pick everything with paper towels into a trash bag.
- Clean the inside
There are plenty of dog cleaning products on the market, and many pet shops retail non-toxic cleaning solutions. However, you can always make a home-made mix to disinfect and polish the cage.
You only need two ingredients, bleach, and water. Remove all the animals and provide a lot of ventilation while you’re cleaning the crate. Apply the mixture to the plastic and let it sit for 15 minutes, and then rinse it away with water.
Do not mix any other solution with bleach because you’ll create a chemical reaction which can damage the kennel. This solution will be enough to remove all the dirt and odor while disinfecting the entire unit.
- Don’t forget about the exterior
Due to a rough surface, the exterior is equally challenging to clean. However, even here, you can use bleach or vinegar to remove all the dirt or purchase some spray in a pet show.
What’s the Easiest Dog Crate to Clean?
Now that you know how to clean pet carriers, it’s time to decide what kennel is most comfortable to maintain. All three of them have some things in common, but when we compare the effort, products, and time, we would say that the winner is soft sided dog crates.
In this case, you only remove the fabric and put it into a washing machine, and it’s done, while other cages require a lot of scrubbing.
We hope our tips will help you keep your pet’s carrier spotless, regardless of which one you use.