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Ask Dr. Laundry

Ask Dr. Laundry

Old Pet Stain

By Dr. Laundry April 13, 2012

Q:  I just found an old dried in stain from my puppy on my comforter.  How can I get this stain out without having to throw away the comforter?

A:  Congratulations on the new member of your family, dogs are a wonderful addition!  If the comforter is white and made with synthetic fill, simply wash it in hot water using detergent and ¾ cup Clorox® Regular-Bleach.  If it’s colored, you still may be able to bleach it depending on what dye was used.  You can check for colorfastness with a quick bleachability test.  To do this, add 2 teaspoons bleach to ¼ cup water and apply a drop of the solution to a hidden part of the comforter (be sure to test all colors).  Wait 1 minute, then blot dry.  No color change means the item can be safely bleached, and you can wash it as described above. 

However, if the comforter is down-filled, or the fabric does not pass the bleachability test, then you can wash the comforter with Clorox2® Stain Fighter and Color Booster.  Begin by pretreating the stain with a little liquid Clorox2® – apply it directly to the stain and rub in, allow it to sit for 5 minutes and then wash in hot water using detergent and more Clorox2®.  Air dry and check for success—repeat the treatment if necessary.  Air drying is good if you can—the cover should dry faster than the fill so just let it air dry long enough to make sure the stain is out, and then finish drying the comforter in a hot dryer (this is important to avoid the comforter mildewing). 

Another great tip is to include some clean tennis balls when transferring the comforter into the dryer.  This helps bounce the loft back into the comforter!  You may also want to consider taking the comforter to a launder mat for drying if your dryer is small and won’t allow it to fluff all the way out. 

Does anyone else have puppy or kitten stain that need to be removed?