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Varmint Hunting Tips: Clean a Coyote Hide with Your Washing Machine

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December 31, 2012
Varmint Hunting Tips: Clean a Coyote Hide with Your Washing Machine - 9

I’m a fan of the saying “work smarter, not harder.” With that sentiment, I bring you this photo. It’s easy to prevent getting a hide bloody if you’re a trapper—most of the time. But if you do any predator hunting with a rifle, you know darn well that it’s hard to not end up with bloody hides. I've spent hours washing out coyote hides in five-gallon buckets.

A few weeks ago, I happened by chance to get a crack at a coyote, and shot him in the head with a .17 HMR. I dreaded putting that hide up; the coyote was gushing blood when I dragged him back to the truck.

I’ve grown accustomed—through trapping—to keeping hides clean and not having to wash them in the first place. After thawing him out and skinning him, I spent some time figuring out options to cheat my way out of this less than appealing job. Then it hit me: use a washing machine.

It works surprisingly well, and is one of the easiest and most effective ways to clean a hide. Treat it as you would a load of laundry. Bloody, messy hides come out perfectly clean, and I think it makes them look better once they dry because the detergent cleans out all of the dirt and grime in the fur. This trick works well for cleaning beaver and other greasy hides after fleshing. It doesn't really matter what kind of detergent you use, and about one cup is enough to get the job done.

If you can get away with it, give it a try the next time you get a messy one. However, I will not be held accountable for angry wives who find hides in their washing machines.

Comments (9)

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from codyg88 wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

did you have to use the gentle cycle or was normal ok? It seems like it would be hard on them, I believe that it works, just curious if you had any future problems with hair falling out

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bob Hansen wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Hi...

Hey, why not...??

That's the same method that many taxidermists use to clean up hides and furs for tanning ...!! (Although maybe not in their home washer).

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Maybe you could buy one of those old washing machines that you spin by hand.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Linda Smith wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Hey guys......just find an old washing machine and set it up to wash the hides in!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from 4everAutumn wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

My wife came home once and caught me boiling out some mink skulls and baculum bones on the stove. I can only imagine what she would do to me if she caught me washing a hide in the washer. Who knew a “good” pot became a “bad” pot after contacting mink…parts.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Andy Hahn wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

For married men, this trick definitely does not fit in the "work smarter" category.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntfishtrap wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Come on Tyler, aren't you going to include some advice on how to get one's significant other to agree to let you use her washing machine to clean bloody, stinky coyote hides? I'm sure you know the magic words, right? Right...?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Yeah, cjohnsrud, that would only work once in my home and I'd be living in the garage. Serously, it would probably work great but I'd ahve to find an old beater washer that is used for doing this.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from cjohnsrud wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Ya right. My wife would be washing my hide after she caught me doing that.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment (200 characters or less)

from cjohnsrud wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Ya right. My wife would be washing my hide after she caught me doing that.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Yeah, cjohnsrud, that would only work once in my home and I'd be living in the garage. Serously, it would probably work great but I'd ahve to find an old beater washer that is used for doing this.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Andy Hahn wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

For married men, this trick definitely does not fit in the "work smarter" category.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from 4everAutumn wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

My wife came home once and caught me boiling out some mink skulls and baculum bones on the stove. I can only imagine what she would do to me if she caught me washing a hide in the washer. Who knew a “good” pot became a “bad” pot after contacting mink…parts.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Linda Smith wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Hey guys......just find an old washing machine and set it up to wash the hides in!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntfishtrap wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Come on Tyler, aren't you going to include some advice on how to get one's significant other to agree to let you use her washing machine to clean bloody, stinky coyote hides? I'm sure you know the magic words, right? Right...?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bob Hansen wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Hi...

Hey, why not...??

That's the same method that many taxidermists use to clean up hides and furs for tanning ...!! (Although maybe not in their home washer).

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 15 weeks ago

Maybe you could buy one of those old washing machines that you spin by hand.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from codyg88 wrote 1 year 14 weeks ago

did you have to use the gentle cycle or was normal ok? It seems like it would be hard on them, I believe that it works, just curious if you had any future problems with hair falling out

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment (200 characters or less)

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