The Best Dog Beds
Unless your dog shares your bed, which has both pros and cons, a good dog bed can make all the difference in your pet’s sleep health. In fact, given that dogs sleep on average 12-14 hours a day, your dog likely spends way more time in its bed than you do. That means all of the things you’d look for in a mattress for yourself--comfort, support, materials, temperature regulation, and more--are just as important to consider when it comes to your furry friend’s sleeping environment, if not more so.
Since dogs come in all shapes, sizes, and breeds, what makes for a good dog bed depends on the individual needs of your dog and its sleeping habits, as well as any health conditions it has. In this guide, we’ll break down the different types of dog beds, what to look for when shopping for a dog bed, and share our picks for the best dog beds of 2019.
Our Top Picks
|Dog Bed||Bagel bed, natural and eco-friendly, chew-resistant||See Best Price|
|Dog Bed||Orthopedic, multi-layer foam, moisture-resistant and anti-tear/chew, hypoallergenic and antimicrobial||See Best Price|
|Dog Bed||Orthopedic meets bagel, multi-layer foam, anti-tear/chew cover, won’t sink or sag||See Best Price|
|Griffith Pet Bed||Orthopedic, multi-layer foam, certified foam, waterproof, anti-scratch||See Best Price|
|Orthopedic Dog Bed||Orthopedic, water-resistant liner, anti-tear cover, poly-fill cushioning||See Best Price|
Nest Bedding Dog Bed
Why we like it:
- Orthopedic bagel bed design
- Natural, eco-friendly materials
- Durable enough to chew
- Two-year warranty; 100-night trial
Although it’s designed by a mattress company, Nest’s Bolstered Pet Bed sets itself apart from the other dog beds on this list by being a traditional bagel bed, rather than an orthopedic bed made out of “human-grade” materials. In fact, its interior and exterior both contain ingredients you won’t find in a mattress: the cover is made out of a natural cotton canvas, while the eco-friendly filling is made from 100% recycled plastic.
This doesn’t mean it compromises on orthopedic support. Rather, the bed’s bolstered border is designed specifically for pressure point relief, making it a top choice for older dogs, dogs who sleep curled up, and others who need more support and cushioning. Additionally, its materials make it non-toxic, durable enough to chew, machine-washable, non-absorbent, and breathable inside and out.
It comes with a 100-night trial, so you can have your dog test it out before making a final choice, as well as a two-year warranty.
Purple Dog Bed
Why we like it:
- Orthopedic multi-layer foam design
- Moisture-resistant and anti-tear/chew
- Hypoallergenic and antimicrobial
- One-year warranty; 100-night trial
Purple’s Pet Bed is essentially a dog-sized version of its high-tech flagship mattress. Rare for a dog bed, it’s made out of three layers: a high-density support layer made out of certified poly foam, a plush comfort/transitional layer made out of certified poly foam, and Purple’s signature Smart Comfort Grid made out of Hyper-Elastic Polymer. Not only does this provide your dog with plenty of support and pressure relief, but it’s also non-toxic, hypoallergenic, and vegan. Additionally, it comes inside a machine-washable cover that resists moisture, tearing and chewing, bacteria build-up, stains, and odor.
This makes it an excellent choice for a wide range of dogs, especially those with special needs. Older dogs, larger dogs, dogs with orthopedic conditions, dogs prone to wetting the bed, and dogs who tear and chew at their beds will all find this versatile enough to suit their needs. (Since it’s flat and temperature-regulated, anxious dogs and those who sleep cold will probably be better off with something more bolstered and warm.)
It comes with a 100-night trial, so you can have your dog test it out before making a final decision, as well as a one-year warranty.
Casper Dog Bed
Why we like it:
- Orthopedic bagel bed design
- “Impenetrable” nylon cover designed for digging
- Won’t sink or sag
- One-year warranty; 30-night trial
Casper’s Dog Bed combines the benefits of an orthopedic, multi-layer foam bed with those of a bagel bed. The comfort layer of memory foam will conform to your dog’s body and weight for pressure point relief, while the base layer of poly support foam will provide your dog with the support and spinal alignment it needs. Surrounding all of this is a bolstered border made of more supportive foam, and the whole thing is encased in an “impenetrable” nylon, designed specifically to encourage digging, that simulates the feeling of “loose earth.”
This makes it an excellent choice for all kinds of dogs, from those with joint issues who need extra pressure point relief and support, to anxious dogs who need to be surrounded by reinforced cushions. If your dog has multiple special needs, then it’s hard to find a more accommodating choice than Casper’s Dog Bed, which has the added benefit of a fortified design that prevents permanent sagging and sinkage. (Because the materials are all synthetic, dogs with sensitive skin may want to look elsewhere to avoid allergic reactions.)
The only downsides are its relatively short 30-night trial, so your dog won’t get as much time to test it out, and the fact that you have to assemble it somewhat when it first arrives.
Brentwood Home Griffith Pet Bed
Why we like it:
- Orthopedic multi-layer foam design
- Certified foam
- Waterproof, anti-scratch, washable cover
- Three-year warranty
Like many other orthopedic dog beds, Brentwood Home’s Griffith Pet Bed is large, flat, and filled with memory foam. Unlike typical offerings in this category, however, it’s made out of two layers of the same foams found in Brentwood Home’s regular mattresses: a high-density memory foam comfort layer and an orthopedic support layer. These certified foams (which are even safe enough to chew) are protected by a waterproof liner, as well as a washable quilted cover that withstands “heavy use and play.”
Although this is a great choice for dogs of any size and age who don’t require enclosed beds or bolstering, Brentwood Home explicitly states it’s designed with dogs who have joint pain and arthritis in mind.
While it lacks the trial period of some other selections in this guide, Brentwood Home’s Griffith Pet Bed more than makes up for it with a three-year warranty. It also offers a choice of four sizes, to most of the other top picks’ three, and sets itself apart with an unusually stylish design rarely found in dog beds.
Friends Forever Orthopedic Dog Bed
Why we like it:
- Water-resistant liner
- Orthopedic mattress foam
- Removable, anti-tear cover
- Poly-fill bolster for extra cushioning
Similar to Casper’s Dog Bed, this Orthopedic Dog Bed by Friends Forever combines the pressure point support of memory foam orthopedic beds with the added cushioning of sofa beds. Unlike the other selections here, however, the memory foam base used isn’t the kind found in regular mattresses, but “baby mattress grade.” This, plus a bagel-shaped bolster filled with polyfiber, makes sure your dog gets both maximum comfort from all the plush cushioning and maximum support for its bones.
Due to its hybrid design, this bed would be suitable for dogs of all sizes and sleeping habits, especially those with multiple health needs. Additionally, its machine washable microsuede cover is anti-tear, and water- and fur-resistant, which makes it a great choice for dogs prone to rough play, accidents, and shedding, but don’t want to compromise on softness.
Although this bed doesn’t come with a trial period, it does have a standard one-year limited warranty. It also has a leg-up over other beds with its wide size selection, which goes up to a 40 by 50 ‘’ XXL size that allows multiple dogs to sleep comfortably at the same time. Additionally, while other beds typically offer one thickness and height option, Friends Forever’s Orthopedic Dog Bed offers a range of thicknesses from 2.5 inches for the small to 5 inches for the XXL.
Dog Bed Buyer’s Guide
Just like people, dogs have different sleeping habits and preferences that require different types of beds. Some have built-in heating features, while others are designed specifically for dogs who burrow. Some are stuffed with cedar shaving, while others are made of the type of memory foam you may prefer in your own bed. Still, others may have additional perks like antimicrobial properties or hypoallergenic bedding, which can be important for keeping your dog’s bed fresh-smelling and allergen-free.
This section will break down dog beds by their sizes, types, inner and outer materials, and additional properties, as well as a list of other things to consider depending on your dog’s needs.
Dog Bed Sizes
Sizing is the most important feature to consider when shopping for your dog’s bed. Just as a correctly sized bed can keep your dog sleeping comfortably throughout the night (and day), an ill-sized bed can lead to not just discomfort, but aggravated health issues. A bed that’s too small to accommodate your dog’s size and weight will inadequately support your dog’s spine, neck, and joints while adding too much strain on its pressure points. This is why you should make sure to measure your dog at its full length when determining the specs for your dog bed, especially if your dog sleeps on its back or on its side with its body stretched out.
|Extra Small||17” or shorter||23” or shorter||Up to 10 lbs.|
|Small||18” to 19”||24” to 29”||Up to 25 lbs.|
|Medium||20” to 22”||30” to 35”||Up to 45 lbs.|
|Large||23” to 27”||36” to 41”||Up to 75 lbs.|
|Extra Large||28” to 29”||42” to 47”||Up to 90 lbs.|
|Extra-Extra Large||30”+||48”+||Up to 120 lbs.|
Types of Dog Beds
The second most important feature when it comes to a bed that accommodates your dog’s sleeping habits and health needs is the type. Some types are best suited for dogs who sleep on their backs or with their legs outstretched, while others are designed with orthopedic conditions or cold sleepers in mind. The type of a dog bed will dictate all aspects of your dog’s sleeping environment, from whether it will rest directly on the ground, to the amount of cushioning provided, to how flat or raised the sides are, so take your time when making this choice.
Dog Bed Considerations
In addition to size and type, your dog’s comfort will depend largely on the material inside its bed. Some types of filling, like memory foam, focus on support and heat responsiveness, while others, like cedar shaving, emphasize their pest deterrent and odor repellent qualities. This is an especially important feature to consider if your dog has orthopedic conditions, as not all materials may provide adequate cushioning.
- Cedar Filling: What cedar fillings lack in softness, they make up for in their excellent abilities to keep your dog bed pest-free and fresh-smelling. That said, their strong smell may not be a good idea for dogs who need to retain a keen sense of smell, and you should make sure the cedar chips aren’t uncomfortably poking your dog or escaping out of the bed.
- Memory Foam: Just like the material used in mattresses for people, dog beds filled with memory foam conform to the sleeper’s body. Soft and pliable, they’re famous for providing a “hugging” feel that supports the heaviest points of the body. That makes them a great choice for older dogs and those with orthopedic conditions.
- Polyfiber: A fluffy, synthetic filling that’s frequently made out of recycled material, polyfiber is great for dog beds that have bolstered edges, such as bagel beds. They provide lots of cushioning, but some types may shift inside the dog bed and get lumpy over time. That means they may not be a good choice for big dogs, those with orthopedic conditions, or other dogs who need consistent support.
- Support Foam: Made at a higher density than memory foam, this material is usually used in the support layers of memory foam mattresses and doesn’t “hug” the body the way memory foam does. While a solid choice for larger dogs, they may not be a good idea for dogs who need responsive contouring and targeted support, such as older dogs and those with joint and neck pain.
Not only will different fabrics determine how easy it is to regularly freshen your dog bed cover, but they’ll also contribute to the bed’s temperature control, softness, and durability. It’s best to pick a fabric that can be cleaned regularly enough to maintain good hygiene without eroding its surface or changing its texture.
- Synthetic Material: Synthetic materials include anything from nylon to vinyl to faux fur. Depending on the specific materials, these may trigger allergic reactions in certain dogs, so it may not be suitable for pets with sensitive skin. On the other hand, chew-resistant and waterproof dog bed covers are usually synthetic, so if your dog is prone to tearing or wetting its bed, this is something to keep in mind.
- Suede/Faux Suede: Dog beds labeled “suede” or usually made out of faux or microfiber suede instead. That means their covers have all the softness of real suede, but can be removed and tossed in the washing machine for easy and regular maintenance. Suede covers are great for comfort and easily vacuumed, and are a great complement to plusher fillings.
- Polyester: Polyester is a synthetic fiber that is soft, durable, and machine-washable. Dog bed covers made out of this material are great for comfort and warmth, but may not be the best choice for dogs who tend to overheat.
- Cotton: Cotton dog bed covers are an excellent, affordable choice for dogs who need something that’s natural, soft, breathable, and not prone to trapping heat. Hypoallergenic covers are usually made out of this material, so it could be a good idea for dogs with sensitive skin. That said, cotton does tend to run thin, so it may not be a good idea for dogs who get cold easily or those who tear at their beds.
- Fleece: Most dog beds labeled “fleece” are actually made out of synthetic fleece. Soft, thick, warm, and comfortable, these are ideal covers for dogs who get cold easily. Because of the textured material, though, fleece dog beds can be easily stainable and harder to clean. Plus, they’re not a great idea for dogs who shed, because dog hairs can get stuck on the fabric.
Features to Look for in a Dog Bed
Aside from the aforementioned essentials, some dog beds come with additional properties that you may find important for you and your dog’s specific needs. For example, some dogs shed excessively, while others may have sensitive skin that can be irritated by certain types of materials. Before making a final purchase, you should consider whether your dog will need a bed that repels moisture, kills bacteria, doesn’t contain materials your dog is allergic to, and more, as not all dog beds are designed with these features in mind.
- Antimicrobial Properties: Bacteria, mold, and mildew that gets trapped in your dog’s bed will not only make it smell bad but could make your dog sick. It’s a good idea to choose a dog bed with antimicrobial properties that fight the growth of such bacteria and keeps things smelling fresh.
- Hypoallergenic: Make sure the bed you purchase is made out of materials that won’t trigger an allergic reaction in your dog, or simply irritate your dog’s sensitive skin. Since allergies and sensitivities are individual to each dog, you’ll have to contact your vet, do your research, and watch out for any signs of an allergic reaction like excessive itching or runny eyes. That said, there are hypoallergenic dog beds, which are typically made out of natural materials and prevent the build-up of allergens such as dust and mites.
- Moisture-Resistant: A moisture-resistant or even waterproof bed is a good idea for puppies who are still going through house training, elderly dogs with incontinence issues, and other dogs who may simply have an issue with peeing in their beds. These beds have covers or liners that prevent urine from soaking into the filling. You should keep in mind that moisture-resistant means it’s not entirely waterproof and may be unable to keep large amounts of urine out of the filling.
- Machine-Washable Cover: For hygiene and health purposes, it’s very important to buy a dog bed with a cover that can be regularly cleaned. For most dogs and lifestyles, that means a machine-washable cover. If you do opt for a bed without a removable, machine-washable cover, make sure you purchase one that can be regularly cleaned and disinfected in another way, such as through spot cleaning or hand-washing.
- Style and Design: As we outlined in the “types” section, the style and design of a dog bed is the second-most important feature to consider when shopping. Since every dog has different sleep needs, it’s a good idea to look in the product descriptions for beds that are designed specifically for dogs like yours. You’ll also want to look for reviews by owners whose dogs share similarities with your pets.
What Else Should I Consider When Purchasing a Dog Bed?
Since every dog has unique needs, you’ll want to make sure you’re meeting all of those specific to your dog before finalizing your purchase. At the same time, you’ll also want to find one that is well within your budget and space requirements. To make sure you haven’t missed anything, we’ve created a checklist of frequently asked questions to consider when choosing the best bed for your dog.
- How much do you want to spend? Dog beds can range anywhere from around $20 to well over $1000 for luxury models, but generally speaking, you can find a high-quality, long-lasting option that accommodates most sizes, sleeping habits, and preferences for around $75-125.
- Does your dog shed? If your dog is prone to shedding, you may want to consider a dog bed that doesn’t trap hair and can be regularly cleaned. That means covers made out of textured materials like fleece, covers that aren’t vacuumable or machine-washable, and beds with too many tufts and hard-to-reach nooks and crannies, are all things to avoid.
- How old is your pet? If your dog is getting older, it’s a good idea to invest in a bed that can accommodate and alleviate aging-related health conditions, even if they haven’t begun to manifest. Meanwhile, if your dog is a puppy or at an age where it’s still growing, you may want to start off with a big bed. If not, you should keep in mind that you’ll have to size up later.
- Does your pet have health problems? Make sure the bed you choose for your dog will relieve your dog’s health conditions and not make them worse when it’s sleeping and resting. For example, that means paying attention to supportive and cushioning materials for dogs with joint problems or opting for heated or burrowing beds for dogs who sleep cold. You’ll want to consult your vet and extensively research these capabilities when shopping because the wrong type of bed could seriously injure your dog.
- How big is the room where you plan to keep the dog bed? Before going shopping, it’s important to jot down the measurements of the room where you plan to keep the dog bed. If it’s a bed with a frame, make sure it can fit through the doorframe or be assembled inside. If it’s a soft bed, make sure there’s no hard furniture surrounding it so your dog can stretch out comfortably without injury.
- Does your dog sleep outside? The vast majority of dog beds are made for dogs who sleep inside and are a bad idea for outside use. Therefore, if you do have an outdoor-sleeping dog, you’ll want to make sure the bed is specifically designed for this purpose, and won’t get too cold or hot with temperature changes. In inclement weather, such as heatwaves and rainstorms, you should take your dog inside.
- Is your dog anxious? If your dog has anxiety, you’ll want to buy a bed that can help make it less anxious. Good options are burrowing beds, bagel beds, or other types of beds with raised backs that will make it feel more secure.
- Does the dog bed contain certified foam? Certified foam, or foam that meets
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