Choosing a Dog Bed

While dogs are often happy to lay their heads down in a multitude of places throughout your house, including your bed, it is important that your dog has its own space for napping and resting at night. The choices for dog beds can seem endless, however, so it can be overwhelming when you try to pick one out. Think about your dog’s needs before you shop. Consider any health issues, your dog’s age, and its personality when choosing a bed. Additionally, don’t forget your own concerns, such as the bed’s size and price, as well as whether the bed fits with your décor.

Shopping Tips:

Weigh and measure your pet before you shop for pet beds.

Measure your dog while sleeping. You want to give your dog enough space to lay down comfortably at the end of a hard day. A good rule is to measure your dog from its nose to its tail while it is sleeping. Then, add between 8 and 12 inches to determine the length or diameter of the bed you choose.

  • Keep in mind whether your dog is fully grown when measuring. If it isn’t, you may want to select a bigger bed than you need, so you won’t need to replace the bed as quickly.
  • If your dog is a puppy and you don’t want to buy a small bed now and a larger one later, you can add blankets or padding to a larger bed to help your puppy feel secure.

Considering Your Dog’s Needs

You want to give your dog enough space to lay down comfortably at the end of a hard day. A good rule is to measure your dog from its nose to its tail while it is sleeping. Then, add between 8 and 12 inches to determine the length or diameter of the bed you choose.

  • Keep in mind whether your dog is fully grown when measuring. If it isn’t, you may want to select a bigger bed than you need, so you won’t need to replace the bed as quickly.
  • If your dog is a puppy and you don’t want to buy a small bed now and a larger one later, you can add blankets or padding to a larger bed to help your puppy feel secure.

Think about Special needs

Your dog’s age or health issues can play a role in the type of bed you select. Orthopedic beds cater to dogs with sore joints or arthritis, while those with cooling pads can be good for long-haired dogs.

  • Orthopedic beds made of high-density memory foam conform to your dog’s shape and offer comfort and support for easing your dog’s aches and pains.
  • Memory foam tends to hold on to odor, so make sure you cover a memory foam bed with a waterproof, washable cover.
  • For dogs in warmer climates or those with thick fur or long hair, beds that offer a chance to cool off are essential. Long-haired dogs or those with thick fur tend to overheat easily while sleeping. They do well with cots, since they are typically made of mesh, and air flows beneath the dog as it sleeps.
  • Beds with cooling pads are also available if your dog isn’t comfortable sleeping above ground

Choose a bed that is easy to maintain

Perhaps the most important consideration when choosing a bed for your dog is to pick one that can be easily cleaned. Dog beds need to be cleaned often to control odors, fleas, and dirt. The outer cover should be washed every week or two.

Choose the best material

Dog beds are available in a variety of materials that can help you deal with issues such as incontinence, odors, or allergies.

  • Waterproof beds are ideal if your dog is older and incontinent. If your bed isn’t waterproof, such as a mattress-type bed, purchase a waterproof cover to place over it.
  • Cedar-filled beds not only repel odors, but they also can transfer a pleasing scent to your smelly dog. The more your dog rolls around in its cedar bed, the better it will smell in the morning.
  • Hypoallergenic dog covers that you stuff yourself are also a good option if your dog is sensitive. That way, you can try several different fillings to see which works best for your dog.

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