Dog Articles

Bedtime Stories: Dog Beds

Does Your Dog Need A Dog Bed?

Even if your dog is allowed to sleep with you in your human bed, every dog should have a bed of their own.
There are plenty of benefits to having dog beds. They can be used for napping during the day and sleeping in at night.

Unlike the floor, a bed will keep your dog warm, support arthritic joints, and prevent calluses. And unlike a couch or human bed, dog beds are spaces that pups can have all to themselves. Dog beds can also be taken with you when you travel
so that your dog feels comfortable and is able to sleep somewhere familiar. They'll rest easier and feel less anxiety.
Dog beds are also usually easy to wash, which makes life easier if your dog has accidents, gets infested with fleas or mites,
or just rolls in something stinky. A dog bed shouldn't be used as a place for punishment or confinement.
It's a place of security that belongs only to that one dog, and they should always feel safe in it.

Styles Of Dog Beds

  • Flat pads or mats are inexpensive and fit in crates.
  • Nesting/snuggle beds are similar to beanbag chairs and often preferred by smaller dogs who love to curl up.
  • Cuddler/nest beds come in the "traditional" oval bowl shape.
  • Bolsters have one long side with a built-in pillow and are often preferred by large dogs.
  • Donut-shaped beds are circular bolsters with a removable center pillow.
  • Waterproof beds are good for outdoor use or incontinent pets.
  • Orthopedic beds support joints or very large dogs; they usually have medical-grade foam and/or box-spring construction.
  • Cot-style beds keep your dog off the ground and comfortably support joints by distributing the dog's weight evenly.

What Is The Best Bed For Your Dog?

Here are several factors to consider when choosing the best dog bed:

  • A good fit. Beyond finding something within your budget, make sure your dog fits on the bed; heads and limbs shouldn't have to be hanging off the edge.
  • Easy washability. Dogs eat treats, vomit, pass gas, scratch fleas, and wipe ointment-filled eyes and ears on their beds. Some dogs urinate on them - so the ability to throw the bed into the washing machine is a big help, if not downright critical. Dogs with allergies will also benefit from having their bed washed frequently.
  • Safety. Place the bed away from high-traffic areas so no one trips on it or on the dog. If the dog chews it, then get rid of it. Remove any buttons or ribbons the dog could chew, or look for "chew-proof" beds.
  • Stuffing that works for you and your dog. Young, warm, healthy dogs can usually get by with inexpensive foam filling, but your older or arthritic dog will probably prefer more comfort and support. Some orthopedic beds use foam because it's thicker and of higher quality, so it doesn't squash flat.
  • The environment. Some are concerned about using materials that won't harm the earth when it's decided to replace, get rid of, or recycle a dog bed. You can check out eco-friendly dog beds if that's something that factors into your decision.
  • Absorbent pads for dogs who wet the bed. Sick, incontinent, or geriatric dogs can benefit from washable or disposable absorbent pads (technically, you're the one benefiting because you won't have to wash the bed). Note: These flat pads won't fit well in a nesting bed.

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