If your dog’s bed is smelly, you’ll naturally want to clean it. And clean it well. But can you use Lysol? Or is this product toxic to dogs? Well, you’ll be pleased you stopped by. Here is why.
So, can I spray Lysol on my dog’s bed’? You should never spray Lysol disinfectant on your dog’s bed (or anywhere else in your home, whether you have a dog or another pet). You can use the company’s specialized non-toxic product line instead (the Daily Cleanser range).
As such, you’ve generally got two options here; seek out a pet-friendly alternative, or opt for the brand’s safer product.
Before I delve into those, let us see why Lysol is inappropriate for use on a dogs bed and what could happen, should you have decided to use it.
Is Lysol Spray Toxic For Dogs?
Nearly all cleaning sprays and products are toxic for dogs, and Lysol is no exception unless you choose the right product from their Daily Cleanser line.
Why Most Cleaning Sprays Are Toxic for Dogs
Most cleaning products will leave behind vapors that are toxic not only to your dog but to you, too.
These products also leave residue behind where they’ve been used – such as on your dog’s bed.
Residue from cleaning products presents extra dangers for dogs because:
- Dogs constantly sniff, lick and chew on things, absorbing toxic residue
- Dogs being lower to the ground than us, they’ll be more susceptible to residue or vapors left behind when you clean their bed, the carpets and flooring, etc.
Many large brand-name cleaners (including Lysol) have harmful ingredients that remain in vapors or residue, such as:
- Glycol ethers
Check the labels when buying cleaning products to choose safer alternatives (see below).
Using The Correct Lysol Product
Lysol has a selection of non-toxic cleaners that are a safer alternative than the usual cleaning products. Lysol’s non-toxic cleaners have only these three ingredients:
- Hypochlorous (a weak acid that forms when you dissolve chlorine in water)
Note: Although chlorine is toxic, hypochlorous is a safer alternative because, unlike chlorine, it won’t leave the same toxic residues behind.
The range of non-toxic Lysol products is called Lysol Daily Cleanser, which the company claims you can use on your dog’s bed, toys, bowls, and other surfaces he comes into contact with.
Lysol’s Daily Cleanser range has ingredients such as:
- Baking soda
- Lemon juice
- Tea tree oil (note that tea tree oil is toxic to dogs: an infinitesimal amount is acceptable)
While you wouldn’t want your dog to drink this product or lick his bed while it’s still wet, the residue from this range of cleansers is less likely to make you or your dog ill.
You will still want to keep him away from wet surfaces until the product has thoroughly dried.
This is the safe Lysol product below, and you can buy them over at Amazon:
- Kills 99.9% of viruses and bacteria
- Contains only 3 ingredients
- No harsh chemical residue
- Suitable for use on food-contact surfaces, toys, baby and pet areas
- No rinse step required
What Happens If A Dog Breathes In Lysol?
If your dog breathes in Lysol, there can be serious consequences. Many ingredients in Lysol are known carcinogens and asthmagens.
Possible Immediate Symptoms
If your dog breathes in Lysol (or other toxic fumes), any of the following can happen:
- Inflamed airways
- Difficulty breathing
- Ulcered, irritated or burned skin, including mucus membranes
- Burned, ulcered or irritated gastrointestinal system
- Irritated, burned, or ulcered eyes
- Excess salivation
What To Do If Your Dog Breathes In Lysol
If you think your dog has inhaled Lysol, you must act fast. Here’s what to do:
- Call your vet or the Pet Poison Helpline at (855) 213-6680. Even if your dog is not showing obvious signs of distress or damage, inflamed airways can cause death within hours.
- Move your dog away from the fumes.
- If your dog has seizures, contain him safely on your way to the vet.
- Keep your dog’s airways open (if needed, put him in the recovery position on his right-hand side. Gently extend his head back to keep his tongue forward and away from the back of his throat).
- Help his breathing, using CPR if needed.
- If you have time, flush your dog’s eyes with fresh water or an eyewash made for dogs.
Once you are at the vet’s, depending on the severity of the poisoning, your vet may do the following:
- Administer fluids.
- Give pain medication.
- Provide anti-inflammatories.
- Prescribe antibiotics.
Your vet will also want to monitor your dog’s renal function to make sure there is no risk of kidney failure.
Toxic Ingredients In Standard Lysol Disinfectant Spray
In addition to water, here are the ingredients in Lysol’s disinfectant spray that are known to be toxic:
- Ethanol. Ethanol (also found in hand sanitizers) is a known carcinogen and can be life-threatening if ingested. Risks include decreased blood pressure, dangerously low body temperature, and low blood sugar
- Alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium saccharinate. This ingredient is also toxic if swallowed and can cause eye damage as well as severe skin burns
- Butane. Butane (also found in lighter fluid) is known for causing severe burns to the stomach, esophagus, mouth, and throat
- Propane. Propane can cause dizziness, diarrhea, fever, headache, convulsions, and death
- Ethanolamine. Ethanolamine is an asthmagen and can cause irritation in the nose, throat, and lungs, as well as coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath
- Ammonium Hydroxide. This chemical is another asthmagen and can cause the same problems as Ethanolamine (see above)
- Butylphenyl Methylpropional. Another substance classified by the EU as being a carcinogen, mutagen, or reproductive toxicant. It can cause birth defects depending on the amount of exposure and stage of pregnancy
- Delta-3-Carene. Another asthmagen which can cause skin, lung, and eye irritation
- Eugenol. Also found in allspice, eugenol is yet another asthmagen that can not only cause breathing problems and irritation, but nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, heart or kidney trauma, and nervous system damage
- t-Butyl Alcohol. In high concentrations, this chemical has caused narcosis in animals (stupor, drowsiness, or unconsciousness)
Given the above list, it’s pretty clear you don’t want your dog anywhere near the classic Lysol disinfectant spray formula!
What Can You Spray On Dog Beds?
If you want to spray something on your dog’s bed to disinfect it, you can use Lysol’s Daily Cleanser spray or another pet-friendly brand. Or, even better, go for baby-safe brands, which are usually safe for both children and pets.
You can spray Lysol’s Daily Cleanser on your dog’s bed.
Just make sure the bed is completely dry before your dog goes near it to avoid him licking up any residue (even if it’s non-toxic).
Other pet-friendly brands for dog bed spray include:
- Common Good
- Better Life
- Eco Me
You can also make your own non-toxic cleaner, which is even better as you’ll know exactly what’s in it.
Here’s how to do it:
- Get an empty glass spray bottle (you don’t want anything with plastic, and glass is safest). Make sure it’s big enough to hold 4 cups of liquid.
- Combine the following together in a bowl with a fork: 2 tablespoons baking soda and 2 tablespoons lemon juice.
- Using a funnel if needed, put the baking soda and lemon juice mixture into the spray bottle.
- Add to your spray bottle 3 cups of hot water (not necessarily boiling, but hot enough to dissolve the other ingredients together).
- Shake the bottle to combine everything, and spray where needed.
- You can use this spray anywhere you’d use disinfectant: not only on your dog’s bed but on countertops, flooring, dog bowls, toys, etc.
Note: Make sure to only use freshly-squeezed lemon juice. Don’t use store-bought, as it won’t work as well. Some recipes have lemon essential oil – or other essential oils known for cleaning, such as tea tree, but these oils are toxic to dogs. Pure, fresh lemon juice is the safest and most effective option.
How Do You Disinfect Dog Bedding?
To disinfect your dog’s bedding, you’ll need to clean it thoroughly and then disinfect it, either using the products described above or with a hot soapy wash (see below).
Get Rid of Excess Hair and Dirt
First, remove any excess hair and dirt from your dog’s bed with a vacuum cleaner.
Most people find the brush attachment especially helpful for reaching corners and under the fabric trim.
Clean the area around his bed, too, as it’s all too easy for dogs to tread on things and bring them into his bed.
This first vacuum sweep will have the added benefit of removing unhatched flea eggs or other pests.
Use a Stain Remover
Do your best to treat any stains on your dog’s bedding. Stains left by dirt, urine, or feces are best dealt with before attempting to disinfect.
If you prefer a store-bought cleaner, try using an enzyme-powered stain remover – making sure it’s pet-safe, of course.
If you see stains on your dog’s bed, such as those left by feces, urine, or dirt, use an enzyme-powered stain remover.
Follow the directions on your stain remover (make sure it’s suitable for use with pets).
Note: Make sure your chosen stain remover is free from harsh chemicals (such as those listed above).
Homemade Stain Removers
To be extra safe, you can use these homemade remedies for removing stains, according to the cause.
- First, sprinkle a good amount of baking soda onto the stain. Let it sit for a few minutes (at least 5) to soak up the urine.
- Next, mix more baking soda with equal amounts of water and distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle. Spray the solution onto the stain and let the mixture sit for at least 10 minutes.
- Blot the stain with a cloth, and use a urine detector to check the area to make sure you’ve gotten all of the stain. If needed, repeat the spraying and blotting steps until the area is clear.
- Remove the feces and apply equal amounts of cold water and distilled white vinegar to the stain.
- Using a cloth, blot the entire area, or scrub with a soft bristle brush. Repeat until the liquid is absorbed and the stain has vanished.
- Sprinkle baking soda over the bed and let it dry overnight (without your dog in it!) Vacuum up the baking soda when it’s dry.
- Let the mud dry if it’s a fresh stain. If it’s old and caked dry, bend or twist the part of your dog’s bedding that will break up the mud. Use a vacuum to remove as much loose dirt as you can.
- Moisten a cloth with cold water. Wipe away the stain. If you need to, put your dog’s bedding back in the washing machine. Otherwise, wait till the mud dries and crack the stain and vacuum, as before.
- For wet blood stains, soak the area right away using cold water (warm or hot water will only set the stain).
- Using a wet cloth, blot the stain gently to remove as much of it as possible.
- In a spray bottle, combine baking soda, distilled white vinegar, and cold water together (as above, but make sure the water is cold). Spray the area and let it set for thirty minutes.
- Blot the area using a wet cloth. If the bloodstain is still visible, repeat the above process.
- If you find the stain is very difficult to remove, consider finishing up with an enzyme-based stain remover or a bit of hydrogen peroxide.
Disinfecting Different Types of Dog Bedding
Depending on the type of dog bedding you have, there are some things to remember for cleaning and disinfecting.
If Your Dog Bedding is Hand-Wash Only
You can still vacuum and scrub the bed with water, of course, but if you need to wash the whole bed, try this:
- Put the bedding in a sink, bathtub, or outdoor children’s pool.
- Fill the container with warm water, along with some pet-friendly laundry detergent (you can make your own if you wish) and a cup of distilled white vinegar.
- Knead and squeeze the bed in the soapy water, then empty the container and rinse the bed. Lay the bedding flat to let it air dry.
If Your Dog Bedding Has a Removable Cover
- Vacuum the cover, treating the stains as in the above methods.
- To kill germs, machine wash the bedding and cover separately on the hottest setting, with pet-friendly laundry detergent and one half-cup of white wine vinegar per load.
- Rinse and allow to dry.
For Memory-Foam Bedding
- Use a handheld vacuum with the brush attachment to get into the crevices of the memory foam.
- In a spray bottle, use a mixture of water and ½ cup of pet-friendly laundry detergent to spray the bed, but don’t soak it.
- Liberally sprinkle the bed with baking soda and let it sit for a few hours.
- Vacuum up the baking soda.
- Flip the bed over and do the other side in the same way.
So, in summary.
Lysol disinfectant spray = toxic. You should not use it.
Lysol Daily Cleaner = an option. And safe to use.
Otherwise, you may want to seek out some other dog bed cleaning alternatives. Those specifically designed for such purpose. Just be sure to do your research and due diligence first.
Other guides you may want to check out:
I am an experienced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets, from traditional pets like dogs and cats, to the more exotic like reptiles and rodents. I currently own a Cockapoo (pictured) called Bailey. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site dedicated to sharing evidence-based insights and guidance, based on my vast pet ownership knowledge, experience, and extensive research.