Let’s be honest there’s nothing more relaxing and rejuvenating than a good night’s sleep.
This isn’t only true for us humans but also our four-legged friends who on average spend about 12 to 18 hours a day sleeping so imagine if we slept that much wouldn’t we also want somewhere comfortable to sleep?
There has been many a discussion between my friends, family, and people’s dog’s that I work with and that usually goes a little like this, Do I Really Need To Get My Dog A Dog Bed?, and my answer to them is always the same. How would you like to sleep on a cold hard floor?
There may be times when you find your puppy occasionally or in my case very often snuggled at your side during the middle of the night however dog’s need to have a bed of their own.
That way even when you are not there they have a comfortable spot to sleep and relax, one that’s especially for them.
I don’t let my two dog’s sleep in my bed, so that makes it even more important that when I’m out they have a nice comfortable place did they go to sleep and that comfortable place isn’t on the floor.
However, as you can see in the photo on the left they do have their own beds and an old sofa
A a good dog bed will give your dog not only a space that is comfortable but also supportive and soft.
Just think about how you sleep best, don’t you wake up feeling better from sleeping on a comfy bed with support from a pillow and mattress?
There is a whole variety of different features that make for a great dog bed, and they should always be thought about when shopping for your furry friend.
Do Dogs Need Dog Beds?
These days many dog owners let their dog’s sleep with them in their own beds and this is fine, however every dog should have at least one bed of their own for many reasons of which I go into more detail in an article I recently wrote on Should I Let My Dog Sleep On My Bed? – Why/Why Not?
When a dog has their own bed it gives them somewhere to rest and sleep while you are out or simply awake.
Remember dog’s on average sleep/rest between 16 – 18 hours a day so having their own bed when your bedroom is closed gives them somewhere soft, warm, and comfortable to help promote healthy sleep, support arthritic joints and prevent calluses, all of which are major problems if your dog’s are sleeping on hard floors.
Even if your dog is a 24/7 365 days a year outdoor dog they still need somewhere soft, elevated and comfortable to sleep and if this is the case you should always look at an elevated outdoor dog bed, so as to keep them up off the cold floors.
How Often Should You Change Out Your Dogs Dog Bed?
There really is not set time limit and it will greatly depend on how much you paid and the quality of the bed.
In saying that not all the good quality beds are expensive and you can get a wide range of these types of beds for under $200.
Obviously the more you pay the longer it will last and as a rough guide dog beds should really be replaced every 1 – 5 years depending on the wear and tear, if it is an indoor or outdoor bed, and of course the needs of your dog.
For example as your dog’s grow older they may require an orthopedic or memory foam bed to help relieve joint pain when they sleep.
If your dog’s bed also doubles as a chew toy you may notice holes, tears and loose stitching, this is definitely a good sign that a new bed could be on the horizon as this has now introduced a choking hazard should doggy swallow some of this!
Some other reasons it maybe time to look at replacing the old dog bed could be:
- The dog’s size, the bed you bought them as that cute adorable puppy no longer works for them other than as a pillow to rest their heads on.
- Your dog’s age. As I mentioned earlier, just like us humans as dog’s grow older joint and muscle pain could become something they have to live with so picking out a good quality orthopedic bed will help them immensely.
- Health reasons could also be an issue as in allergies to certain bedding material.
I have always watched my dog’s and they will usually show me when their beds need replacing.
How Do I Choose A Dog Bed That Will Last?
Like most things we buy in the world these days, the old adage you get what you pay for is no different when it comes to buying your four-legged friend their bed.
A cheaper low quality bed ($30 – $40) will need to be replaced far more often than the one that is a little more expensive.
You also want to look for a bed that is made from a durable, waterproof, and chew proof (If your dog is a chewer) material.
The waterproof material is especially good for senior dog’s who can’t always make it up to go to the toilet, puppies that still haven’t been house-trained or it is an outdoor dog bed.
You also want a fabric that is easy to wash, so I always look at either microfiber, vinyl, leather or nylon when I am choosing new beds for my two, pictured above doing some couch time.
I would strongly advice you to avoid materials such as linen, cotton, tweed, velvet, or silk as these are a nightmare to keep clean and are flea breeding grounds!
How Can I Get The Longest Life From My Dog Bed?
A really good, well-made dog bed can be an expensive thing, however if it is well looked after and maintained properly can last really well for 5 – 6 years.
Other than regularly washing your dog bed cover, you should also make sure that the surrounding areas are always swept clean and disinfected as this will also give your dog bed a longer life.
When it comes to the washing of your dog bed cover, I religiously wash Saffrons and Narlas every week as I do for my own bedding.
The below is how I get the longest life from my dog bed:
- I have a Chom Chom dog hair removal brush which I firstly run over their beds. It is quick and easy and removes all the loose hair from their bed.
- Once I have removed all the loose hair I put it in an old dryer I got for $50 from a flea market (Excuse the pun LOL) for between 5 – 10 minutes on tumble only which helps to soften the cover and blankets and loosens up any of the remaining dog hairs.
- After this, I put half a cup of white vinegar into the washing machine (Again I got this from a flea market for $30) set it on the normal warm wash cycle. What this does is remove any stinky odors and loosens any really stubborn dog hairs.
- Finally I will dry the bedding as per the manufacturers instructions.
How Big Is Too Big For A Dog Bed?
OK, so how do I know if my dog bed is too big for a dog bed?
What you will need to do is grab yourself a tape measure and your partner and measure from the tip of their nose to the tip of the tail (This is where the partner comes in, they hold the tail out!)
The length that it measures is the minimum length your dog bed should be.
Just like us, dog’s like to move around in their beds trying to find that perfect comfortable position so you need to make sure you add on that extra space when buying that new bed.
Ideally your new dog bed should have ample space for them to chew toys, relax and lounge around in on those lazy days and of course for a comfortable nights sleep.
My best advice would be to always go bigger rather than smaller, unless of course you have one of those dog’s that just love to curl up when they are sleeping.
A bigger than required dog bed is also handy if you have a puppy as it gives them years of growing into, or perhaps you have two dog’s that both like to sleeping or lounging together.
I own a giant breed who’s name is Saffron and she is a two-year-old Mastiff.
These breeds are harder to shop for as many pet bed manufacturers don’t really specialize in this size dog bed.
These beds are a lot bigger than your normal bed and are either memory foam or orthopedic.
Because all giant breeds are prone to hip and joint problems this is a must for them and if you own or are thinking of buying one of these types of dog’s I highly recommend you have a look at a company called Big Barker before you make any decisions on what type of bed you will get.
So if you are still asking yourself do I need to get my dog a dog bed, I hope what I have said here today helps you to understand why ALL dog’s need their own dog bed.
For me a dog’s life is far to short and I want to make sure that while they are with me I do everything I can to make sure that life is the best one possible, and for me that all starts with a comfy place to rest.
Whether your dog’s are inside or outside pets, there are beds that will ensure your dog gets a good nights sleep.
I hope you have enjoyed reading this article on do I need to get my dog a new dog bed and if you have any questions or recommendations on dog beds please leave them in the comments below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
As always, “May Your Home Be Filled With Love And Dog Hair”
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Founder of Our Dogs World 101