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As dog owners, we’re bound to experience all the chasing and keeping up with our active and hyper-energetic pets. And just like us, they also deserve the best sleeping nook where they can rest on and get all their energy back. After all, they had a long day of running and barking at every sound they hear and everything they see. While they can simply snuggle and lay down throughout the house, your dog needs to have its own napping and resting space to get the best rest.
On average, a dog can sleep up to 14 hours a day. During a hot summer afternoon, he may just lay down on the floor or on the carpet to take a nap. Dogs can basically sleep anywhere; however, as their moms and dads, we’d want to give them a better place to nap, ideally not on the hard and cold floor. Moreover, even if you invite your dog up on your bed and share the space to sleep at night, he still needs to have a place he can claim as his own, and that’s where a dog bed will come into the picture.
Sleeping on a dog bed will give your dog a sense of comfort and security, and peaceful, uninterrupted sleep. It may seem overwhelming to choose among the endless kinds of dog beds, but fret not, we at The Furry Companion are here to help you decide on the best dog beds for your dog’s best rest!
The Best Dog Beds Will Match Your Dog’s Conditions
Before buying a dog bed, there are questions you should ask and variables you have to consider depending on your dog’s needs. It is essential to know your dog’s condition before swiping your card. Personality, health condition, age—these are just some of the things that you should take into account when choosing the right dog bed. While your dog cannot complain and suggest what he prefers, you can get an idea by observing his behavior and evaluating every detail about your dog.
Observe your dog’s sleeping style. Knowing how your dog sleeps, as well as his sleeping habits, is a crucial part of choosing the right bed. If your dog fully stretches his body when sleeping, he might need a huge bed. Meanwhile, a dog that curls and compresses itself when sleeping might need a small bed with sides he can lean on.
If your dog tends to chew, you might want to consider going for a simpler bed. Chewing and clawing is a common habit for most dogs, and it can destroy things, including the place where he sleeps. Buy a bed without additional features like temperature pads or anything that will cost you extra money to replace.
Choose the best dog bed that matches your dog’s size. Measure your dog while he’s sleeping or lazing around. The perfect bed would have a size that will give the dog a big enough space to move around and be comfortable. Our tip is to pick a size that’s a little bigger—not too big, though—instead of buying one with barely any space for your dog to move.
How do you measure your dog? The rule is to measure your dog’s body from its nose up to its tail, and then add not less than 8 inches or not more than 12 inches to estimate the size of the bed.
For puppies or dogs that are not yet fully-grown, opt for a bigger bed than the measurement you calculated so that you don’t have to immediately replace the bed once your pet grows. If you buy a larger bed for your puppy, you can add layers of padding to keep it comfortable and not too big for him.
On the other hand, older dogs may start experiencing muscle degeneration, pain, and chronic inflammation. At this tender age, the best you can do for them is to make sure that their pain will be less and controlled. You want them to get the most comfortable rest and sleep as much as possible.
Your dog’s health condition can also be a factor when choosing a bed. Orthopedic dog beds are the type of mattress for dogs suffering from muscle and joint problems such as arthritis. Effectively managing your dog’s lifestyle and making adjustments for their condition can help control the pain and illnesses that they experience. If the place where they sleep is not appropriate for their health, it can result in more pain and discomfort.
Temperature and Physical Build
Observe how your dog breathes while sleeping. This factor can be helpful when deciding which among the best dog beds to choose. Some dog beds can help regulate the dog’s temperature with heating or cooling pads.
Dog beds that come with cooling pads and allow the body to breathe are best for dogs with long or thick hair. These dog beds are also ideal if you’re living in a tropical climate. Overheating is prominent in dogs with thick fur, especially while they are sleeping. In contrast, it will be best to opt for a bed that comes with a heating pad for dogs with short hair or small dogs because they are more prone to cold and freezing.
Different Types of Dog Beds
After considering the factors above, it’s time to choose among the endless types of best dog beds out there. To help you out, here is an extensive list of the best dog bed types:
For starters, mats are an excellent choice for dogs that tend to sleep anywhere and everywhere. It is typically used for protection from hard floors to offer warmth. It’s also used for crate bottoms if your dog sleeps in a crate or a dog house to increase the comfort and softness of their sleeping area. Mats can be added as a layer on top of upholstery and bedding and be used to cover and prevent damage to couch and furniture.
Additionally, mats can be great for extending the washing period of bed covers. It allows frequent changing to control allergies and for cleanliness.
Best for: Mats are perfect for dogs on the go, or for convenience and comfort when traveling.
Pillow beds feature loose filling, which is suitable for dogs that stretch and move around while sleeping. The extra space offers your pet the freedom to sprawl out and stretch, especially suiting larger dogs. The most common types of fillers are polyester fiber, cotton batting, bean-bag foam beads, and shredded cedar. Pillow beds are one of the most common types of dog beds, but you must keep an eye on it since it may clump or break down within a short time. This, of course, depends on your dog’s behavior.
Note that washing the entire bed causes the deterioration of the stuffing material, removing the padding in some spots. Unless you can remove the cover every time you’ll wash it, you may want to reconsider buying a pillow bed. To keep the bed from breaking down and make sure it stays plump, always check and replace the filler which you can buy in most craft stores.
Best for: Pillow beds are suggested for large dogs or younger dogs, as well as those residing in warmer climates.
As its name suggests, donut beds are round- or oval-shaped beds with raised sides. These are highly-suggested for small dogs who like to curl up while sleeping. It also helps them stay warm while sleeping.
Best for: Donut beds are best for small dogs and for dogs who like to feel secure.
The best dog beds made for cuddling and comfort are nest beds. It helps retain heat, so it is great for dogs who like to stay warm. It also has raised side features like donut beds. A nest bed’s features allow your dog to sink into its soft material, which provides security and comfort. We suggest having a removable center pillow for easy cleaning and maintenance since it can be hard to wash the whole bed regularly.
Best for: Nest beds are best for small and medium-sized dogs and hairless dogs.
A corner bed is an excellent option if you want to save space in your house. This compact dog bed makes use of unused space in any room of the house.
Best for: Corner beds are best for small to medium-sized dogs.
Crib mattresses have spring coils that provide support for your dog’s body. Large dogs are more likely to exhaust and flatten out the bed over time. Nonetheless, a crib mattress can last longer, so you won’t need to buy a replacement multiple times.
Best for: Crib mattress is best for large to extremely large dogs.
Orthopedic Dog Bed
This type is specifically designed to provide support for a dog’s bones and joints. Orthopedic dog beds are recommended as the best dog beds for your fur babies suffering from arthritis and other joint problems. Its memory foam feature reacts to the dog’s weight, providing better support to its body. These are also thicker and provide push back compared to regular dog beds. Most orthopedic beds are also waterproof.
Best for: Orthopedic dog beds are best for older dogs, sick dogs, injured dogs, and active dogs.
For more information, check out our extensive article on why you should make the switch to an orthopedic dog bed.
Cot Style Bed
For dogs that pant and tend to overheat while sleeping, your best choice among all bed dogs would be a cot style bed. On the other hand, the worst beds for these dogs would be the “snuggling” types, since it adds to the amount of heat they experience while sleeping.
Cot style beds are usually made of mesh material with an elevation framework that keeps the bed off the ground. Its features allow your dog’s body to breathe as it provides plenty of air circulation as they sleep.
Best for: Cot style beds are best for thick-furred or long-haired dogs.
Hammock dog beds are similar to the larger hammocks for humans. It’s made of sturdy materials attached to an elevated framework of metal, plastic, or wood. Hammocks are easy to clean but do not offer much padding. It can be useful for dogs who are still in the process of potty training, or dogs experiencing incontinence since the urine will not settle and smell. Meanwhile, it is not ideal for all dogs, as it may cause uneasiness with being elevated while sleeping.
Best for: Hammocks are best for puppies and dogs that are more comfortable off the floor. These are also popular in shelters and boarding kennels since because of their durability, and they require little maintenance to last long.
Bolster Type Bed
Bolster type dog beds are basically like your dog’s own sofa or couch. It has raised edges and is made with durable and sturdier stuffing, the reason why it’s more expensive than regular padded beds. The raised edges provide a measure of security and also a feature wherein your dog can lean. This type of dog bed is bulky and can take up a lot of space.
Best for: Bolster type beds are best for leaner dogs, as well as for anxious dogs.
Cave Style Bed
For smaller dogs who like to dig and play hide-and-seek, cave style beds are a great choice. It is also called a tent bed and has a cave-like arch. This semi-covered design is excellent for providing your pet with a warm and cozy sleep.
Best for: Cave style beds are designed for smaller dogs.
More Tips for Choosing a Dog Bed
Finally, evaluate the quality of the type of dog bed that you will choose. Along with your dog’s comfort, also consider its convenience to you as the dog owner. Here are several factors and some tips and tricks for you when it comes to choosing the best dog beds:
One important attribute of all the best dog beds is its washable feature. Choose a dog bed that is easy to clean and maintain. Dog beds need to be cleaned often to control dirt, odors, and fleas. Hence, you must be able to wash the bed or its cover at least weekly or twice a month. A clean dog bed is vital for your dog’s hygiene, as well as to your home’s image. Make sure to read all labels and check the packaging to know whether the dog bed or cover is machine or hand washable.
Beds for smaller dogs are easier to maintain since they can go right into front-load washers. For larger dogs, however, it is more troublesome to find ways to clean their dog beds as these beds might not fit in machines. This could mean less-frequent washing because it’s bulkier and heavier. In this situation, you will need to pack a huge amount of patience and the right cleaning equipment to help you.
Fits Well in Your Home
Choose a dog bed that is not only comfortable for your buddy but also sits perfectly in your home. It is highly suggested to place the new dog bed in a quiet area or corner of the house, where you or your family do not frequently pass by to prevent disturbing to your dog frequently. It will give your dog time for himself when needed. Moreover, set up the dog bed away from places where heat and cold enter, like the doors or windows. Make sure to set it away from any tripping hazards like sockets.
Since you can find a variety of dog bed designs and colors, you can also look for one in a design or color that you can coordinate with your other house furniture.
There are specific materials that can best cater to your dog’s condition, especially when your pet has allergies, particular odors, or frequent shedding. Having a dog bed will reduce the amount of hair and dirt that sticks to your other furniture. Cedar-filled beds, for example, can repel odors and can even transfer its pleasing smell to your dog. Meanwhile, waterproof beds are ideal for all dog breeds and sizes, as it is the easiest type to clean. It is also best for older and incontinent dogs. If the dog bed you bought is not waterproof, you can always buy a waterproof cover to put on top of it.
Choosing the materials for your dog’s bed also requires you to know his allergies or which can irritate his skin. You can buy hypoallergenic dog covers for sensitive dogs and try different bed fillings to evaluate which best fits him.
You can also consider beds that make use of environmentally-friendly materials such as recycled plastic bottles. These days, there are many dog beds and covers made from only organic materials. Natural rubber is the most popular filling for this type of bed. Not only will you reduce waste materials, but environmentally-friendly beds are very durable and can last longer than your regular dog beds.
Price and Your Budget
Determine your budget first before jumping on shopping. It is essential to evaluate early and compare the prices and features of the choice you have in mind. If you buy on impulse or just because you got persuaded in the heat of the moment, you may end up regretting it because it may not be the best fit for your dog. You have many store options when it comes to buying a dog bed, from pet shops to big-box retailers and online stores. You can also access information on all the best dog beds online.
Do not sacrifice your dog’s comfort for an extremely cheap and inappropriate bed. You can find a lot of dog beds with high-quality materials at a fair price. Make sure that you’re investing in a bed that is worth the price you’re paying.
With this wide variety of the best dog beds available and all the factors and characteristics to consider, it may be confusing at first. But with the right research and careful evaluation of your dog’s behavior and condition, you will be able to find the best dog bed for your dog’s best rest. We hope that this guide has helped enlightened your mind on the know-hows of choosing the best dog beds.
Francine is currently a full-time college student. When not lost in the dreamland or busy with academic stuff, you can find her occasionally snuggling with their two house cats, Sese and Snowy and with their resident doggo, Koolet.