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How to clean a fur rug

Fur rugs are luxurious, comfortable accents for today’s homes. Whether the rug is pure sheepskin or faux fur, there are special ways to care for the rug to ensure it stays clean and comfortable. While it is important to look at your rug’s specific care instructions, these guidelines will also serve to help you care for your fur or faux fur rug.

Learn More About Cleaning Fur Rugs

  1. How to Clean a Fur Rug
  2. Tools and Materials Needed for Cleaning a Fur Rug
  3. Step-by-Step Guide for Cleaning a Fur Rug
  4. Deep Cleaning a Fur Rug
  5. Additional Tips for Maintaining a Fur Rug

How to Clean a Fur Rug

Like any other rug, it is vital to regularly care for your rug with intentionality and discretion. If you clean your rug with the improper vacuum head or cleaning detergent, you may risk damaging the rug’s surface fibers and staining the rug. Natural sheepskin rugs may also develop matted sections over time that need careful brushing with a wool comb or slicker brush to remove the tangles. 

Whether the rug is a faux fur or genuine article, the first step in cleaning the rug is to shake out any loose dirt and debris. After that, vacuum the rug using the suction function. Attachments with beaters or revolving bars shouldn’t be used on fur, since they can cause the fibers to tangle. Use the vacuum in the direction of the hair to further avoid tangling the fibers. 

When spot-cleaning a rug, be sure that the cleaner is specifically approved for your rug’s material. Even in these scenarios, we recommend testing the cleaner on a hidden portion of the rug to test the rug’s color fastness and reaction to the detergent. After using the treatment, allow the rug to thoroughly dry before putting it back in its previous place or under any furniture.

Tools and Materials Needed for Cleaning a Fur Rug

To help you clean your fur rug, we recommend having the following tools on hand.

Vacuum: Your vacuum should be used with its suction-mode only, since beater bars and other attachments may damage the rug’s fibers. There is also a danger of the incorrect vacuum attachment tangling the fur and creating deep, matted surfaces. 

Slicker Brush or Wool Comb: If your rug has deep tangles or mattes, these two brushes can be used to remove those clumps and restore the rug to its former glory. Keep in mind that these tools are used in slow, steady ways that require patience and a gentle hand. 

Soft-Bristled Brush: If you are spot-cleaning your rug, you may use a soft-bristled brush to work your cleaner into the rug’s deeper fibers. Once again, because of the nature of the fur, choose a brush that is soft and gently scrub the area. Alternatively, a rag can be used to spread the cleaner throughout the rug. 

Mild Detergent: In the case of authentic wool fur rugs, be sure to choose a detergent that is approved for wool. Faux fur rugs can be treated with mild detergents and solutions to remove surface-level stains or deeper stains.

Queen Size Runner Rug

Step-by-Step Guide for Cleaning a Fur Rug

  • Prepare Your Rug
    Whether your rug is large or small, take a moment to shake out any loose dirt and debris. Large fur rugs can be draped over a washline and beaten. This will remove loose and even deeper dirt from the rug. 
  • Vacuum Your Rug
    Even if you are certain you knocked out all the dirt in the previous step, vacuum your rug. Shaking the rug likely brought even more dust to the surface that your vacuum cleaner can pick up more easily now. When using the vacuum, use a suction-only attachment or configuration. Bars and beaters often catch the fur and cause tangles or damage, so it is vital to vacuum the rug intentionally and in the direction of the hair. 
  • Spot Clean Your Rug With Solution
    Faux fur rugs are commonly treated with a mixture of liquid soap and warm water. Two tablespoons of liquid soap combined with six cups of warm water can be mixed in a bucket and then applied to the rug with a dry cloth or soft-bristled brush. Dab the rug with some pressure 2-3 times per spot and avoid scrubbing, since this can damage the fur. 

Step-by-Step Guide for Cleaning a Fur Rug (continued)

  • Rinse Your Rug
    An important part of the process is thoroughly rinsing your rug to remove any lingering detergent. Fill a small bucket with cold water and then apply the water to the rug with a fresh cloth and soft dabbing. Doing so will remove the soap from the carpet and draw out any remaining stain. 
  • Dry Your Rug
    You may allow your rug to air-dry with natural airflow or fans. Larger rugs that are very wet can also be hung outside on washlines to expedite the process. Make sure the rug is completely dry before moving it back to its proper spot or under furniture; any lingering moisture may damage the rug and cause unsightly water stains. 
Round rug for queen size bed

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Queen Size Runner Rug

Deep Cleaning A Fur Rug

If you are cleaning the entire rug, you may use the method detailed above along with the recommended cleaning solution or an approved commercial detergent. However, we recommend cleaning the rug outdoors to give you more room to work and avoid damaging the flooring beneath the rug with water. Place your rug on a clean outdoor surface like a patio or balcony where it won’t be exposed to soil, mud, or loose stones.

Additional Tips for Maintaining a Fur Rug

Regular maintenance is a crucial part of caring for your fur rug. Regular brushing will break up any matting or tangles before they can become widespread or noticeable problems. Vacuuming will also help reinvigorate the rug’s fibers and keep them from gathering dust. 

As a part of your care, it is important to know what sort of damage your rug may be susceptible to. Consider if the rug can handle direct sunlight or heavy traffic. This will help you decide on the best placement for your rug and give you the motivation to rotate it so no single portion of the rug is worn down by foot traffic.

Round rug for queen size bed

Fur rugs are a stunning accent for today’s homes. Whether it is placed in a well-traveled room like a living room or a secluded bedroom, it is vital to care for your rug consistently and intentionally to keep the rug soft, comfortable, and beautiful. With the cleaning methods detailed above, you now have the knowledge to care for your fur or faux fur area rug.


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