Getting the Best Dog Bed for Your Pooch – The Handy Guide
You know that feeling when you first take your furry four-legged friend home, and you just can’t force yourself to separate from it?
Well, if you let your pup sleep in the same bed as you, it might easily get accustomed to that, which can, eventually, have a negative impact on your sleep quality.
Namely, a study released by the Mayo Clinic Sleep Disorders Center found that 53% of the pet owners sleeping in the same room with their dogs or cats said their pets disturbed their sleep in some way nightly.
And while allowing a dog into your bed is perfectly fine, you will sleep much more peaceful if you don’t share your bed with it, and the dog will have more freedom in its own bed. The question that still remains is how to choose the best dog bed on the market?
We’ll help you with that, by giving you some useful buying tips and describing a couple of best products currently on the market.
Best Dog Bed for Your Pooch
What to Look for in Dog Beds
So, what’s a dog bed really? Is it an oversized pillow? A tiny bed? An old discarded coat in the corner of a living room? While your pup can sleep on all of these places, that doesn’t mean it should.
As an owner and dog’s best friend you should provide it with a true dog bed that will allow it to sleep comfortable and peaceful. Such a bed should be characterized with:
- Comfort (soft place for your pooch to rest its bones and joints)
- Ease of maintenance ( a good dog bed should be easy to clean and maintain)
- Size of the dog bed should be enough to support dog’s body when it’s stretched
- Quality (made of durable materials)
- Resistance to fungus, mold and other harmful hazards
Benefits of Dog Beds
Besides giving the dogs a place of their own, dog beds carry a lot of other benefits you should be aware of:
- Hair control (dog bed will discourage your pet from curling up in every part of the house and keep it concentrated in only one area)
- Odor control (similar as hair control, a pet bed will keep the odors in just one area, and it is usually made of materials that are easy to clean)
- Insulation (it will provide a layer of insulation between the bed and the floor)
- Injury prevention (when the pup is sharing the bed with you, it usually jumps to a high bed, which can lead to injuries, while the dog bed is of just the right height for your pooch).
How to Choose?
Now when you see why your pet needs a dog bed, it is time to find out how to choose the right bed, because there are no one-size-fits-all beds. Besides, your dog might have specific needs the bed needs to address.
Based on the size of the dog
Small & Medium Breeds
Smaller and medium-sized dogs will make your dog bed purchase as easy as it can be. There is a wide variety of dog bed offers for this size range since they are more compact.
However, you should keep the bed in proportion with your dog’s size, because purchasing a bed that’s too large for your pup can leave it feeling uncomfortable and insecure.
Because of that and to save space, you should always look for a bed that’s just spacious enough for your dog to stretch out on it.
Nest dog beds are a frequent choice for small and medium-sized breeds. Typically, they’re round or oval with plenty of cushioning and raised sides to help the small pup feel contained and secure. The filling material should be comfy enough to ensure protection from hard surfaces.
Large & Extra Large Breeds
Larger dog breeds like German Shepherd and Golden Retriever will limit your possibilities of finding a quality dog bed. Most of the good dog beds are thick and made of memory foam to give your pet plenty of cushioning and insulation against the hard floor.
However, extremely large dogs sometimes cause the foam to flatten (after some time), so you may need a replacement at some point. You can also choose a crib mattress with spring coils to provide better support over a longer period of time.
Based on the Fur
Hairless or Cold-Natured Dogs
Fur is there to protect the dogs from the cold, but what if your dog has little or no hair? Does it feel cold? This is a frequent concern for owners of hairless dogs or smaller breeds. Simple padded beds are not enough to keep their dogs warm.
If you own such a four-legged friend, consider a bed that allows for burrowing. Nesting beds and slumber beds are good options too because dogs can sink into the softer filling material of the bed, and thus feel warmer and more secure.
Dogs with Long or Thick Fur
Thick-haired or long-haired dogs are prone to overheat, and beds that would feel good to hairless dogs wouldn’t work well for them.
Instead of emphasizing “snuggling”, dogs with thick or long fur should sleep on beds that are allowing plenty of air circulation, such as a cot style bed. This style usually features a mesh material where the dog lays and in addition to legs that elevate the bed off the ground.
These beds are also useful for older dogs with incontinence issues because of the ease of cleaning.
Based on specific needs and concerns
Having Troubles with Dog Odor?
If you have an especially smelly dog or just dislike any kind of dog odor in your house, consider getting a cedar-filled bed. These beds are very odorous and can significantly cut down or disguise the dog’s odor in your house — and even reduce your dog’s own body odor.
However, cedar-filled beds aren’t as comfy as cotton-filled beds since they don’t provide as much padding. Also, certain dog allergies can worsen with these beds.
Is Your Dog Elderly with Arthritis or Joint Pain?
Elderly dogs and in general dogs that have joint problems need beds that are supportive. Their beds should be thick and provide plenty of support without sinking or relocating filling.
Orthopedic memory foam bed usually covers those demands, but if along with joint problems, your elderly dog also experiences bladder leakage, look for a waterproof orthopedic bed or a waterproof cover.
Does Your Dog Have Allergie Problems?
If the answer is “Yes”, we know that your decision-making process can be longer and more difficult, since you can’t just pick a nice-looking dog bead and get on with it.
The best advice in this case is to be informed about your dog’s allergies and try to avoid clasic fillers used in these products.
For example, cedar provokes irritation on many breeds. One practical solution might be a hypoallergenic cover, but some dogs are too sensitive and might still have issues. Be careful.
What is the Best Material?
One of the best and most comfortable fillings is memory foam. It provides good support for dog's weight and it can last for years without changing shape. As if that is not enough, it is very affordable.
Another good choice is cedar filling that fights odor and repels bugs. A big downside of cedar filling is that it can’t be washed, but since it is not expensive, it is simple to replace. Cotton batting is very popular, but it is also known for losing its shape over time.
Can they be washed?
Ease of maintenance is an important factor when choosing the dog bed material. You see, while cedar chips need to be replaced when they lose their freshness. However, most of the dog beds, regardless of the filling have washable covers.
Now it’s the time to review some of the current popular dog beads on the market.
Let’s check them out and see how they cope on our standards:
1. Furhaven Pet Ultra Plush Deluxe Orthopedic Mattress
The first thing that can be said about this dog bed is that it is very large (36" x 27" x 3.5"), so it can fit a larger dog breed with no problems.
Also, it is important to note that it is made of orthopedic foam which, according to the manufacturer, soothes pressure points and provides support for the joints, enabling deeper, more relaxed sleep.
The sleep surface is plush, which makes it soft for paws and nose, and gives a sense of luxurious sleep to your four-legged friend.
This bed also features a water-resistant poly-canvas base and easy step-on mat design for older, smaller, or disabled pets. The removable cover is machine washable while the foam core is safe for hand washing.
However, although the bed is great for the first couple of weeks, it can’t brag around with longevity. The foam filling is prone to peeling and deteriorating.
Also, although there are some beautifully designed covers, there is no option of replacing one when the one you bought is torn or the zipper is broken.
- The cover design is really stylish
- The bed supports large breeds of dogs
- The step-on mat design is really convenient
- The water-resistant poly-canvas base is another nice addition.
- The foam is not very durable
- The cover zipper is not of great quality
2. MidWest Deluxe Bolster Pet Bed
The MidWest Deluxe Bolster comes in various sizes ranging from 18" to 54", so if you really like this pet bed and you have two different-sized dogs, you can purchase two of the same beds, just choose different sizes.
At the very first look, it is possible to notice that this dog bed looks very comfy and snuggly. That is because of the ultra soft sheepskin fleece cover and comfortable padded polyester bolster cushion.
It can serve as a stand-alone dog bed, but also it is ideal for dog carriers, dog crates, and dog houses. The Deluxe Bolster is advertised machine washable and dryer friendly, so it should be easy to maintain and built to last.
However, the washing it in a machine can make the stuffing fall out and it is not very suitable for dogs who suffer separation anxiety since they are prone to chewing.
Since it is not made of memory foam it doesn’t provide with very good support so it is not suitable for dogs with joint problems.
- The sheepskin cover is incredibly soft
- It is a perfect fit for dog crates and carriers
- The price is ok
- It does not promise longevity
- It doesn’t provide with joint support
- It can be damaged by washing machine and chew
3. AKC Casablanca Round Solid Pet Bed
This soft and cozy bed for smaller dogs (21x6'' ) is created by the American Kennel Club. It comes in six nice colors, so it is easy to fit into every room in your house, regardless of its décor style.
It is constructed from 100% polyester and it offers no-hassle maintenance. Even though there is no removable washable cover, you can throw the bed in the washing maschine when you want to clean it, and on a tumble dry setting in the dryer.
Just remember to use cold setting on your washer.This dog bed is also environmentally-friendly since the cushioning at the bottom is made from ultra-plushy recycled fiber that holds together firmly by the fabric that surrounds it.
Although it looks very soft and cozy, this bed doesn’t have much cushioning at the bottom, and the bottom is more like a pad.
- Good value for the money
- It can be used in cars and carriers too
- It is eco-friendly
- The lack of cushioning on the bottom
- It doesn't provide good insulation
- It is good only for small breeds
- It’s not suitable for heavy chewers
4. BRINDLE Soft Memory Foam Dog Bed
This bed is ideal for medium-sized breeds, such as French bulldog and Corgi. It is filled with 3" layer of orthopedic shredded memory foam that is supposed to eliminate pressure points and increase breathability.
It is a great choice for elderly dogs with achy joints, arthritis and hip dysplasia.
Another big advantage of this dog bed is its soft micro-suede cover that will provide our pooch with ultimate rest, and rid you of unnecessary hand washing since it can be removed and laundered in machine wash (cold to hot with bedding on gentle cycle) and dried in a drier.
On the other side, although it meets most of the needs of elderly dogs, it doesn’t consider the need for water-resistant cover for dogs with bladder issues.
- The bed is both breathable and supportive
- The cover is really soft
- The cover is washable in a machine
- Great for elderly dogs
- The cover is not water-resistant
- It still offers less support than solid memory foam
5. Coolaroo Elevated Pet Bed
In our buying guide, we've already mentioned that raised beds are great for dogs with thick or long fur that are prone to overheating.
Coolaroo offers one such model, with the special focus on keeping your dog cool, by allowing the air to flow under the bed.
Additionally, the fabric is made out of a breathable high-density polyethylene (HDPE) that contributes to the elimination of hot spots. Since it is mold, mildew and mite resistant, it can be used outdoors too.
The steel frame is very well-built and durable and the entire structure is easy to maintain. The bed is very portable and can be assembled in a couple of minutes. It is also eco-friendly.
Coolaroo comes in three different sizes: small (22.75" x 34.75" x 8"), medium (25.5" x 42" x 8"), and large (31.5" x 51" x 8") so it can be used for small, medium and large pets.
Obviously, this bed is not for the dogs that love to snuggle up, since it doesn't feature a soft topper.
- Breathable and enables air flow under the bed
- Resistant to elements and mold and mildew
- Great for elderly animals with joint issues
- Built to last
- The bed isn’t very soft
- Depending on your proficiency, it can be tricky to assemble
The Best Dog Bed For You Is…
While all of these pet beds are very different and suit different dogs, it is not hard to see, that if we would look for the most obvious winner in the best dog bed category, we would have to choose the Coolaroo Elevated Pet Bed.
It is an investment that pays off since it is built to last. At the same time, this bed provides your dog with comfort, both indoor and outdoor, and protects it from overheating.
Comparing to these benefits, the facts that the bed isn't very soft and that it can be a bit tricky to assemble are very irrelevant.
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